OFFSHORE: Not one of the better weeks for the offshore boys by any means. Conditions did improve in the latter half of the week, however, when the variable northerlies morphed into southerlies and eased into the 'light to moderate' range. The quality of the catch racked up a notch from the weekend as well. An interesting development at the river mouth saw a second channel option open up on the Main Beach side of the rock groyne. See the video above.
After an average weekend and a strong northerly blow on Monday it was all systems go for the offshore brigade with Double Island Point a firm favourite. Report and photo above from Chicko Vella, Davo's Tackle World... "When you see pictures of red emperor it gets you fired up. Conditions on Tuesday were ideal and Double Island Point was the destination. Along with a good forecast and small tides it was the green light we needed. We've had several attempts before, but this time we hit the jackpot, boating a couple of nice reds each, along with thumping amberjack, tusk fish and moses perch. The fishing was hot from early afternoon until dark. From there we headed south to the mouth and crossed in the morning. Remember, persistence pays off. Cheers, Chicko."
And from Cougar One skipper Nat Turner.... "Hey Bill. We ran a nine hour charter to Double Island Point on Tuesday. Couldn't have asked for much more. We got our bag limit of snapper (as below left), some absolute monster pearl perch (as above right), a few quality scarlet sea perch (as above left), mulloway or jewfish, venus tusk fish and moses perch. We had near perfect conditions too with a light south easterly breeze and almost no current. Cheers, Nat."
And they fished there again on Thursday... "We had glorious conditions with no wind to speak of most of the trip and a very slight current. The fishing was hot and cold but we managed to catch some stonker scarlet sea perch, red emperor (as above right), snapper, tusk fish, moses perch and longtail tuna."
While Trekka 2 worked the middle reef belt... "Hey Bill. We did a seven hour trip to Chardon's Reef on Tuesday. Conditions were great with a light south westerly breeze in the morning before glassing out. Fishing was a bit tough with lots of small fish that always seem to be there but we worked through them a managed some quality ones. We caught tusk fish, moses perch, spotted mackerel and, as above left, pearl perch and Maori cod. And we ran a five hour charter to North Reef on Thursday morning. Conditions were as good as they get with no swell and very light winds. The river is still a bit tricky but the bar is quite deep to the rock groyne side. We caught gold spot cod (above right), pearl perch, grass emperor, tusk fish and moses perch. Cheers, Mitch Bertacchini."
Closer in, Sunshine Reef ran hot and cold but when it fired, it produced moses perch, cobia, venus tusk fish, grass sweetlip and the odd spotty mackerel. From Spud Mumme, above left... "Hey Bill. Snuck out to Sunshine Reef on Saturday morning. Couldn't get a bite until we dropped down to 15 pound gear. Got lucky and landed this cobia which went 130cm. Caught on a squid strip off the bottom. After that the fishing picked up and we got a nice spotty and and a couple of reefies. We also lost a few fish to sharks." And from Medin Taras, above right... "Attention Bill. Caught this solid cobia east of the bar on a float line pilchard on Wednesday." The Hall's Reef stretch seemed to be well patronised later in the week but, apart from good bait schools, there were no reports.
COASTAL: Not much feedback from the open beaches this week but that's life. The only reports were of whiting on the bite at north Sunshine Beach, dart and whiting around Teewah township on the Noosa North Shore and Spanish mackerel (by drone) up towards Double Island Point. Oh, and the odd tailor. From Nic Bosworth, below left... "A few tailor around Double Island Point. Caught this one on Saturday night off the beach on a whole pilly with ganghooks."
ESTUARY: Flathead were still in good numbers and size from the river mouth to Munna Point this week. Merv Reed (below left) caught his 58cm specimen at the mouth earlier in the week. It went for a drifted whole pilchard. And from Michael Duce... "Josh (above right) caught this big flathead in the Noosa River on live bait in the channel, from a boat, in front of Los Rias Resort. Size was 62cm. Caught around 6.45am on Wednesday. One very happy fisherman."
Report from Jimmy Free, Noosa River Fishing Safaris... "Hey mate. Still a couple golden trevally around mainly the smaller specimens but worth a go on the soft plastics and micro jigs, they were mainly around the ocean entrance, Woods Bays and Tewantin. The Woods also fished well for bream and flathead. We caught a lot of shovel nose there this week it was hard to not get them most days. Jesse from Melbourne (above right) caught his on a prawn. It was just over a metre. Quick piccy and it went back. Tewantin held bream trevally and flathead. Early mornings and late afternoon were the most productive."
"And Jenelle Ecroyd and her daughter Lara from Toowoomba (pictured above) were on Wednesday morning's charter which covered the river mouth and the Gympie Terrace stretch. They caught and released flathead to 58cm, bream to 40cm and trevally around 30cm. All fish went for prawn baits."
Weyba Creek was good for whiting and mud crabs while the mangrove jacks were on the prowl in the Woods Bays, the back of the Sound, Makepeace Island at Tewantin and in the stretch between the lakes. Ben McFarlane (above) and a mate were anchored up past Tewantin late on Friday. They were just chatting, rods in rod holders, lazing away the late afternoon when this 45cm mangrove jack tried to run off with Ben's live herring bait. It was the last of the runout. Ben was super excited when he came into Davo's as this was the best fish he'd ever caught in the Noosa River. And he'll be even more excited to find out he won this week's $100.00 Davo's Tackle World/ChaseBaits Fish of the Week prize. Apart from that, big-eye trevally were active in the first ski run at night.
FRESHWATER: There has been a further drop in dam levels as the hot days persist with no rainfall. This will see fish becoming more condensed but also reveal new snags! This is a great time to get out and mark and memorise new areas previously unseen. The new Jackall Squirrels in the 67SP are classics for freshwater use. Simply find the edges and twitch these down with 2-3 sharp jerks and let it sit for 10 seconds or more before repeating. The Lake Macdonald Botanical Gardens ramp is very low now so bigger boat owners should use the ramp across on the scout camp side. Borumba Dam is getting lower, however provisions were made the last time it got very low. Take a trip into the arms at low speed and be sure to try surface lures first up and then move to subsurface as the sun rises. Bass have been smashing surface first light in both areas and also during the last 30 minutes of daylight as the winds drop out.