Gi­ant test of en­durance

Plucky broth­ers take turns to reel in feisty mon­ster trevally

Townsville Bulletin - - LIFESTYLE - with Ed­die Rid­dle send us your catch news and photos: email ed­dierid­dle@ fishc­ity. com. au

BROTH­ERS Ed­ward and Sam Rosatto took turns in bat­tle with a thump­ing gi­ant trevally they hooked early this week while fish­ing be­tween the Townsville har­bour and Mag­netic Is­land’s Pic­nic Bay.

Fa­ther Reno Rosatto watched on with quiet pride as his grown sons heaved against an ad­ver­sary de­ter­mined to make good its free­dom among the bar­na­cled py­lons of the ship­ping chan­nel.

The trio had been fish­ing for school or dog­gie mack­erel when the big fish hit, and it was for­tu­nate that the fish’s ini­tial run was deep into the chan­nel where lit­tle struc­ture threat­ened to break the line.

Ed­ward gladly passed the rod to Sam fol­low­ing a tor­tur­ous 10 or so min­utes where a heavy drag set­ting took toll on both an­gler and fish.

Sam was equally de­ter­mined to steer the fish from a path trac­ing a di­rect route to the nav­i­ga­tional py­lons mark­ing the eastern and op­pos­ing edge of the chan­nel.

His brother’s ef­forts were ap­pre­ci­ated by Ed­ward when given back the rod, the fish still surg­ing deep in the bow­els of the chan­nel, but much more pre­dictable and far from the threat­en­ing py­lons.

Pa­tience and skil­ful rod work drew the solid fish to the sur­face where it was duly tailed, lifted aboard for a few pho­to­graphs and gladly given its free­dom.

The Rosat­tos recog­nised the big GT’s sec­ond- rate ta­ble qual­ity hardly com­pared to a mixed bag of fin­ger­mark, mack­erel and gold spot cod al­ready chill­ing in the ice­box. Weather’s off, again THE weather gods are an­gry again and I reckon it’s about time they took a chill pill.

Week­end boating fore­casts are less than ideal for off­shore an­glers and in­shore pun­ters might do well to plan fish­ing within shel­tered wa­ters in­side Cape Cleve­land or close to Mag­gie Is­land.

At least there seems plenty of dog­gie mack­erel at hand in shel­tered and shal­low wa­ters.

Large tides on the back of this evening’s full moon will ren­der many re­gional boat ramps un­us­able dur­ing mid to late af­ter­noon low tide pe­ri­ods of less than half a me­tre ( both days this week­end) and the tidal surge con­sid­ered by many as ex­treme dur­ing the evenings when wa­ters hit 3.7m and 3.6m re­spec­tively.

Land- based an­glers could ben­e­fit from the ex­treme tides when they seek baits in­clud­ing yab­bies and prawn dur­ing the ebb tides be­fore pre­sent­ing them on fine hooks and light lines dur­ing the flood tide.

Whit­ing and flat­head re­main re­li­able catches at Bush­land and Toolakea beaches, while Bur­dekin hotspot Alva Beach is cer­tain to be well fished. A hand­ful of en­ter­pris­ing young an­glers might well be found scour­ing the rock walls dur­ing the low­est of the tides col­lect­ing snagged sinkers and lures lost by those fish­ing dur­ing larger tides.

Ex­posed ground be­low Aplins Weir is a pop­u­lar place for a bit of tackle prospect­ing dur­ing the low­est tides of the lu­nar cy­cle. The goss on span­ish SPAN­ISH mack­erel catches have proven far from con­sis­tent when an­glers drag their baits and lures near pop­u­lar shoal ar­eas wide of both Hal­i­fax and Bowl­ing Green bays; how­ever, they re­main a nearcer­tain catch when an­glers drift baits astern while an­chored near favourite reefs.

Brit­tomart, Bram­ble and Keeper reefs have all given up bag- limit catches to an­glers who might be happy to cast a garfish bait out the back and let it be while con­tin­u­ing to fish for classy ta­ble fish in­clud­ing coral trout and redthroat em­peror.

Some an­glers said they were pre­pared to sac­ri­fice a cou­ple of fish to sharks when they used a lit­tle berley to at­tract the mack­erel to the baits, the sharks of­ten prov­ing the first at the din­ner ta­ble once the berley was dis­pensed.

In­shore mack­erel seem mostly an af­ter­noon propo­si­tion when an­glers fish close to Cape Cleve­land.

Wolf her­ring baits con­tinue to ac­count for the largest mack­erel while garfish and pilchard of­fer­ings are of­ten at­tract­ing less de­sired fare such as queen­fish and trevally.

An­drew Mills said he caught a brace of span­ish mack­erel when he towed baits close to the eastern face of Twenty Foot Rock dur­ing favourable weather con­di­tions early this week.

The fish each weighed about 14kg and fell to wolf her­ring baits pinned to Chin Guards rigs about an hour be­fore dark. Chal­lenge lures an­glers MORE than $ 50,000 in cash and prizes will re­ward suc­cess­ful an­glers com­pet­ing in this year’s Mike Car­ney Toy­ota Bill­fish Chal­lenge.

Hosted by the Townsville Game Fish­ing Club, the pres­ti­gious four­day ( Septem­ber 1- 5) tag and re­lease tour­na­ment is set to at­tract an­glers from across the coun­try in pur­suit of small black mar­lin and sail­fish within fish- rich wa­ters wide of Townsville.

Bowl­ing Green Bay was once a world- renowned bill­fish ground, its hey­day back in the early ’ 80s when hun­dreds of ju­ve­nile mar­lin and pa­cific sail­fish would be en­coun­tered by com­peti­tors dur­ing the tour­na­ment.

Fast for­ward 30- some­thing years and the pop­u­lar game fish­ing grounds con­tinue to give up good num­bers of game fish species, in­clud­ing bill­fish, but un­for­tu­nately not in the ex­cit­ing num­bers of yes­ter­year.

Ac­cu­mu­la­tive points are awarded for bill­fish tagged and re­leased through­out the tour­na­ment, with win­ning an­glers se­cur­ing large cash prizes at tour­na­ment’s end while other game­fish species in­clud­ing mack­erel, tuna and co­bia might be weighed to de­ter­mine daily cash prizes.

Nom­i­na­tion forms and tour­na­ment brochure is avail­able at tgfc. org

BAT­TLE ROYALE: Broth­ers Ed­ward ( left) and Sam Rosatto show off their big catch be­fore re­leas­ing it back into the ship­ping chan­nel.

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