Keep Your Word
As mentioned in last week's column: 'In a small town, word of mou
The incredible run of great weather has allowed boats to travel out wide to fish the grounds along the edge of the continental shelf. This is serious fishing, with most Anglers running electric reels and fishing depths between 70 and 100 plus metres. Reports have filtered in of big Nannygai, Job fish, and some fantastic Red Emperor being caught. There have been similar stories from those fishing the deep-water rubble patches between the reefs, however sharks have been a problem both during the day and at night.
The great run of Coral Trout has continued, with most Anglers who fish the main reefs reporting great catches. The Spearfishermen have also been doing well, catching good numbers of Trout, Blue Tuskers, and Crayfish. It really is paradise when the weather turns it on like this!
The various shoals and rubble patches just outside of the islands and out into the shipping channel have all been fishing reasonably well, with boats reporting reasonable numbers of School, Spotty, and Spanish Mackerel. Trolling lures, floating pilchards, or high-speed spinning have all been working well. Not crazy numbers, however everybody with whom I have talked has been happy with their catch.
I have heard that the Billfish Tournament, which was run out of Lucinda, was a huge success with 5 small Marlin tagged and released and good numbers of Spanish Mackerel weighed in. For those interested, the boats were fishing 30 metre contour lines out to the edge of the inner reefs. There was a lack of bait, however the little blacks were thick once you found a decent bait ball. Congratulations to all the Anglers, especially Pete Mammino and his two young boys, Sam and Joe, who managed to catch and release three Marlin.
The estuaries have been fishing very well, with good numbers of Barra and Mangrove Jacks being caught in the coastal creeks and Hinchinbrook region. Later in the afternoons water temperatures are ideal, getting up over 25 degrees, however it is still possible to find water under 22 degrees early in the morning and higher up in the creeks. (You know where and when I would be fishing). I consider 25 to 28 degrees Celsius the ideal temperature for Barra and Jacks.
Those fishing with the family has been having a ball chasing Bream and Flathead in the creeks. There were also some Fingermark caught from the deep holes in the creeks and along the drop offs in the Hinchinbrook Channel. Most Anglers like more run for Grunter. Despite this, there were still some nice fish caught. This is a great sign for the better tides this weekend.
Social media has photos of some very nice Sooty Grunter and Jungle Perch, which were caught on the weekend. It is definitely a little cold for great fishing, and this just shows that with the right approach, they can be caught at any time of year.
At this early stage of the week, the various weather sites are predicting 15 to 20 knots for this weekend. This will not stop the larger boats travelling out to the closer in Mackerel grounds and fishing for Spotty and Spanish Mackerel.
Most boats, however, will probably be confined to the estuaries. This is not all bad news however, as the tides should offer some great estuary fishing. I like either side of the afternoon low tide for Barra and Jacks. This same incoming tide will also suit those wishing to pump a few yabbies and fish the edge of the sand bars for Whiting, Bream and Flathead.
I like either side of the evening high tide to fish for Grunter in the creeks or along the edge Hinchinbrook flats.
The afternoon low tide will cause access problems at many creek mouths and Port Hinchinbrook.
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