Grab your gear and go for it — it’s barramundi time
THE barramundi closed season ended on Monday, to the delight on keen fisherman in FNQ.
A few storms and plenty of rain over the past few weeks should work their magic to help ensure a strong start to the new season.
Barramundi is one of the prime target fish in the Far North.
As well as being a top, lighttackle sport fish, it is also a favourite table fish.
If you’re just starting out, some reliable spots to chase barra are coastal headlands, run-off creeks, streams and river mouths.
For bait, it might the right time to cast for prawns, which are in abundance with some wet weather predicted – try seeking out mud flats and dirty water.
Take extreme care if cast netting at the moment, it’s been a bumper season for stingers. A full body suit offers the best protection, but if you aren’t planning to get your feet wet, wear a long sleeve shirt and make sure you check your net before putting it over your shoulder, to avoid a potentially nasty sting.
Other good baits to use for barra include live mullet – just remember when it comes to barra bait, the fresher the better.
If you want to try your hand at hooking a barra on a lure, hard bodies are the most popular option.
Try classic Gold Bombers, B52s, Nils Master Spearheads, or Kokodas.
When chasing big barra, I use a bait caster with a 5-8kg rod, spooled with 20-30lb braid and 60lb leader line.
If you’re not having much luck, tighten your gear by running lighter leader line (around 40lb) and using a lure knot instead of a clip.
Soft plastics are now popular – try using a Z-Man or a Slick Rig on 2500 size spin reel and 2-4kg rod.
The hot tip for this week is to remember that fish ovr 95cm will generally be big breeding females – so it’s always best to carefully release them so they can carry on producing this fine species for the region’s keen fishermen to target for years to come.