Gone Fishing Report


The larger boats, which managed to travel out wide to the main reefs over the weekend, found the fishing patchy, but some very good quality Nannygai, Rosy Job fish, and Red Emperor were caught from the deep-water rubble patches. As is often the case, the sharks were a problem, with quality fish being taken before anglers could manage to boat their fish. Unfortunately, the larger fish, which anglers struggle to land, make the easiest targets. There is a new product called shark guard, which can be attached to the line and acts as a deterrent. I have started to use shark guard recently and, so far, it seems to be working. I will keep you posted.


Coral Trout catches certainly seem to be down on previous years, with boats having to do multiple shifts to bring home a decent catch.


The rubble patches in and around the shipping channel have been fishing well for both small and large mouth Nannygai and some thumping big Cobia. The reports, which came in from the weekend, were that the Spanish Mackerel catches from the normally productive rubble patches were poor last weekend. However, those jigging with metals or soft plastics were managing some big Golden Trevally. The Goldens seem to congregate around these areas at this time of year.


Inshore, around the islands and coastal reefs, there has been some incredibly good Coral Trout, Grass Sweet Lip, and Fingermark caught on bait and by jigging soft plastics vibes and micro jigs. The Fingermark, in particular, are starting to be caught in larger numbers. Have a look at the incoming early morning tide this weekend. It will mean an early predawn start; however, it should be worth it.


The Queen Fish have also started to turn up inshore around the islands and headlands, with some also starting to move into the coastal rivers during the larger tides.


The Spanish Mackerel are getting harder to find inshore, however the size has been huge, with some really massive fish caught over the last week. Try drifting a very large live bait or trolling large Wolf Herring.


The estuary fishing has certainly improved, with some particularly good catches of both Barra and Mangrove Jacks over the last week. I managed 6 lovely Jacks in a couple of hours in the heart-break Hull River on Saturday afternoon. I have found the better bite has been during the first few hours of the incoming tide. Try smaller lures than you would for Barra. I prefer 3- or 4-inch paddle tails or prawn style soft plastics.


There have been plenty of reports coming in through the shop of spectacular catches of both Jacks and Grunter in the Hinchinbrook area. Most of the reports were from Missionary Bay and it appears that fresh Herring have been the gun bait. It seems that there has been a lot of Grunter up around the 60cm. mark caught.


Those who are prepared to put in an effort are managing reasonable numbers of mud crabs. The crabs have been a little on the light side but still extremely tasty.


The freshwater reaches of the Johnstone, Liverpool, and Tully are all fishing well for Sooty Grunter, Jungle Perch, and freshwater Barra. The water has warmed up dramatically over the last week, so the better fishing is certainly now around early morning or on dusk. The march flies are a nuisance, so wear light coloured clothing.


Tinaroo Dam is fishing at its best so, if you are on the hunt for a metre plus Barra, now is the time to get your backside up to the dam and have a fish. If you have not fished Tinaroo before, there are a couple of guides who work the area that can put you on track. Try Ian Kukors from Tinaroo Barra Sport fishing, he is a great bloke and knows Tinaroo like the back of his hand.


I am writing this report very early in the week (Monday) and at this stage the various weather sites are predicting light winds for this coming weekend.


This will hopefully allow the larger boats a chance to travel out to the main reefs and deep-water rubble patches.


Either side of the early morning and evening high tide will suit those who wish to fish for Fingermark and Grunter in the local creeks or Hinchinbrook area.


Another option would be to pump a few yabbies during the early afternoon low and fish the incoming tide for Bream, Whiting and Flathead.


Either side of this low would also be the time to chase a Mangrove Jack or a Barra.


Good Fishing

Roly Newton

Tackle World Tully

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