Inshore catches take the bait
ALTHOUGH the water temperature has dropped, the fishing continues to be excellent at the reef. Some moderate conditions allowed a few to venture to the reef over the last week in search of a good feed. Reports of good mixed bags of reefies have been taken. The week ahead is not looking too promising with strong winds forecast.
— Ash Matthews, Sea Fever Sportfishing
ALTHOUGH the conditions weren’t the greatest at the weekend, there have still been some promising reports.
Finding clean water and trolling lures or baits saw some good mackerel caught.
Bait fishing the shallow and fringing reefs is still producing great mixed bags of red throat, sweetlip and coral trout.
Those who managed to fish the deeper water when the conditions allowed were rewarded with some quality nannygai, with the odd jewfish and fingermark being welcome by-catch.
THE crabs have slowed down a touch but what they lack in numbers they make up for in quality.
Trolling 5–8m divers will be the best technique for targeting barra. This will allow you to cover more ground to find active fish. Once found, these fish can be targeted on soft plastics and vibes.
The mouths of the rivers have been producing the best numbers of fish, with good numbers of grunter and salmon being taken on prawn, strip and live baits.
Peter Faust Dam
TROLLING the basin is still producing fish on 8m divers. Keep an eye out on the sounder as finding bait will be the key to success.
Casting shallow diving lures and plastics around the weed beds in the afternoon should see some fish caught as these spots will warm up during the day.
Making the extra effort to find warmer water will also greatly improve your chances of catching a barra.
It’s also a good time to downsize your gear to target sooty grunter.
These fish can be great fun on 10–20lb gear, with smaller barra-style lures and soft plastics. — Ryan Fuller, Whitsunday Fishing World
Hydeaway Bay/Dingo Beach
THE inshore fishing scene is still holding up well, with good numbers of trout and sweetlip being landed in the last week.
They are responding well to both baits and soft plastics. Try using small plastics and let them bounce off the bottom to attract good sweetlip bites.
There have been some big bait schools out in Edgecumbe Bay, bringing on some some good opportunities to surface fish for long-tail tuna and queenfish. Casting metal slices and trolling surface pushers has been undoing these fish.
The beach fishing scene isn’t too bad at the moment either around the Gloucester area.
There are piles of whiting hanging around the shallow sandy patches and there have been reports of good squid being caught during the day off the beaches as well. Try using a lightly weighted jig and target the shallow reefy patches to catch these tasty critters.
— Mick Underwood, Reel
Addiction Sport Fishing
Mike Wilkinson caught this 35kg Spanish mackerel at the reef with Sea Fever Sportfishing.
TOP TROUT: Local Mt Julian angler Hannah Brown caught this 58cm coral trout around the Whitsunday islands on the weekend.
Patricia Vella with a long-tail tuna caught with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.
Jennifer Schacht with her first coral trout landed with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.