Report 9/11/17

Mal McKinlay
malcolmmckinlay0@gmail.com
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Report 9/11/17

Post by subeditor » Thu Nov 09, 2017 4:23 pm

The last Full moon saw some quality fish of every species come from the Maroochy river. By all reports the Mangrove Jack fisherman have started to land some nice fish on lures and bait as the water quality improves upstream. Some very big Flathead have been taking lures and baits all up and down the river. Downstream around Chambers and Goat Island there are exceptional Whiting to be caught up to 40cm in length, but you still must work for them.

My roving reporter Troy almost bagged out on whiting to 36cm on the full moon night tide using both worms and yabbies for bait. He caught most of his fish on the run out tide. I spent a couple of days on the river leading into the full moon and while I caught a dozen nice whiting I had to move around a lot to find them. I fished the run out tide both times using soldier crabs for bait. On the first day I fished for 2 hours without a bite and tried half a dozen different spots around the lower reaches. I was about to move once again when I observed Old Mate had snuck in behind me in his boat. He was fishing closer into the bank and I watched him land a nice fish. I thought to myself maybe they are in closer today. I moved about 5 metres towards shallower water and straight away I had enquiries on both lines. The whiting were biting very timidly but I soon had 6 good fish to 36cm. If I hadn’t observed Old Mate I probably would have went home empty handed. It’s an old habit of mine to keep an eye on my neighbours when I’m fishing, and it quite often pays off.

The next most important thing to me after my bait when I’m fishing, is ice. It is imperative to get your fish into some nice, ice cold water, in an esky as soon as possible after you land it. I make my own ice blocks from Bickford prune juice plastic bottles. I fill them with water and whack them in my freezer. Because they are made from a tough plastic component they can virtually be used over and over forever, and they never crack. I carry 5 of them in my fairly small esky and when I catch a fish I tip a small bucket of water in and throw the fish straight into it. This keeps the fish’s scales moist which makes them so much easier to scale when cleaning. It chills the flesh down quickly and keeps them in prime eating condition. As soon as I have filleted my fish at the ramp they go straight back on the ice till my wife packs them up at home and puts them straight into the freezer. My fish always tastes like it has just come straight out of the ocean even when frozen for a couple of months.

As you are reading this we will be coming into the next lot of neap tides before the Nov New moon. I normally don’t like neaps because slow tides usually mean a slow bite with fish. However, on the Oct neaps I caught some very nice whiting so if the weather is kind I will be out there somewhere chasing them. For all you fisho’s who fish for other species the river has cleaned up immensely since the big rains a month ago, so you should be able to do well even on the neap tides.

Apart from my roving reporter Troy there must be somebody else out there who fishes the Maroochy regularly. I would love to hear from you now and then, so we can share some of your fishing adventures or photos. Please feel free to email me on malcolmmckinlay0@gmail.com any time.

Good Luck
Mal McKinlay

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