Get that win­ning ad­van­tage

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - SPORT - OUT­LOOK Shane Ni­chols

FIN­GERS crossed that the weather out­look of 10-15 knot winds holds for the en­tire week­end.

There’s plenty of tide run at the mo­ment so on the cur­rent weather pat­tern the con­di­tions should suit just about ev­ery­one, whether head­ing off­shore or up the es­tu­ar­ies and streams. “It just de­pends what you want to tar­get, I guess,” said Matt Gra­ham of Brans­fords Dis­count Tackle down in Clifton Beach.

He said there is still plenty of mack­erel, and the small mar­lin, and the big­ger mar­lin are start­ing to turn up also.

In­shore the win­ter river fish species like brim and grunter are still around.

Lure fish­er­men have been do­ing al­right on the bar­ras and jacks since the weather started warm­ing up, Matt said.

“It’s been warm­ing up nicely. That wa­ter tem­per­a­ture was 26deg when I was out there there other day.”

The chang­ing sea­sons and hence chang­ing wa­ter tem­per­a­tures mean fish­er­men pro­vid­ing them­selves with the right data have an edge.

A good qual­ity sounder and trans­ducer can pro­vide read­ings on the tem­per­a­tures of dif­fer­ent lay­ers in the wa­ter col­umn, which has im­pli­ca­tions for what species you might be able to tar­get.

“You’ll see dif­fer­ent tem­per­a­tures on your sounder and usu­ally you’ll see bait fish and preda­tors,” said Matt.

Wonky holes, for ex­am­ple. The cooler, fresh wa­ter com­ing out of these make them a hang out spot for small crea­tures and bait fish, which lures larg­ers ones like fusiliers, and they bring in the big­ger preda­tors.

Matt said if you can use your gear to find these changes in wa­ter tem­per­a­ture where there is usu­ally fish, you can be much more ef­fi­cient on the day. It could save you time and dis­tance.

And that mat­ters be­cause con­trary to what some peo­ple might think, fish aren’t on the bite all day, no more than peo­ple are (well, most peo­ple any­way).

So you have a lim­ited time to hit the tar­get. Hav­ing good gear and be­ing fa­mil­iar with it and pro­fi­cient in its use means a fish­er­man is go­ing to max­imise their chances of suc­cess.

A lit­tle black and white sounder from the ’90s is not go­ing to cut it these days.

It would pay to go and see the ma­rine spe­cial­ists, ask ques­tions and come out weaponised.

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