Have a crack at crab­bing

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - SPORT - OUT­LOOK Gizelle Ghidella

THE winds will be un­for­giv­ing this week­end for those keen to bottom bash on the reef, reach­ing up to 25 knots.

Matt from Brans­fords Tackle at Clifton Beach said there are still plenty of op­tions if you’re keen to get out on the boat.

“If you’re keen you can nip out a few hours be­fore sun­rise and fish around the is­lands and in­shore wrecks then make sure to head back within the first hour of day­light or it’ll be too rough.”

The mack­erel are about with re­ports of peo­ple land­ing both school and Span­ish.

“You don’t have to go a long way out for the dog­gies, they should be around all the lit­tle is­lands like Snap­per or Dou­ble or you can head out to the leeds in Cairns.

“Most of the river fish­er­man will be out in force do­ing their thing, chas­ing those queen­fish and trevally with the odd grunter get­ting around too,” said Matt.

“Lure fish­er­man have been ex­plor­ing up­stream in the fresh wa­ter to tar­get jun­gle perch, sooty grunter, tar­pon and the odd barra or jack.

“A good hard bod­ied div­ing lure or soft plas­tic will work well in th­ese con­di­tions.

“We’re go­ing to move into those flat­ter tides, so there won’t be as much run, which is per­fect for the lure fish­er­man be­cause it’s eas­ier to present the lures,” said Matt.

It be­ing colder the barra are re­luc­tant to bite; they’re still around but their bite win­dow is much smaller.

Live bait should coax the barra out (see Tip).

With con­di­tions less favourable for the reef, fishos have been opt­ing to chase other things.

“When the winds are up, put some crab pots out. I’ve seen a few good mud­dies on those big tides,” said Matt.

Fish­eries are wait­ing for a good week­end – they’re do­ing a mas­sive crack­down on fish­er­men do­ing the wrong thing.

“A lot of peo­ple don’t know is your bag limit means what’s in pos­ses­sion, it counts what’s in your freezer too,” said Matt.

With the weather not favourable for reef fish­ing, now is a great time to study the rules and reg­u­la­tions so you don’t cop a hefty fine.

“Fish­eries have been around and they’ve been warn­ing peo­ple so know your bag and size lim­its and know what you’re legally al­lowed to take,” said Matt.

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