OFFSHORE: What a wet and windy week! As predicted the heavy rains arrived and with some serious falls across the coast this has seen the river and creeks rise, turn chocolate brown and pump bait and nutrients out into the bay. Although this will quieten some of the estuary species for a while, the offshore should start to fire. This is the time of year where longtail tuna are present and will often come into the bays to feast up, especially after a deluge like this.
We did have a couple quite fishable days before the ordinary weather came through but at best it was still a bit joggly on the exposed reefs so not many boaties ventured much beyond the middle reef belt. By Thursday, however, it was as if it had never happened... with blue skies and almost glassy conditions.
Earlier in the week, though, the bigger boats did their bit. Report and photos (above and below) from Trekka 2 skipper Nat Turner... "Hey Bill. We fished Chardon's and Sunshine Reefs on Friday’s nine hour trip. We opted to stay in close as it was pretty rough early on in the morning. We caught Spanish mackerel, a couple of nice coral trout, gold spot cod, venus tusk fish, pearl perch and grass sweetlip. And we fished Sunshine again on Saturday morning's five hour trip before the wind got up for similar results including more coral trout. The current was steady from the south both trips. Cheers, Nat."
Sunshine Reef was certainly top of the favourites list, for both the pelagics and reef fish. Report and photos (below) from Cougar One skipper Mitch Bertacchini... "Hey Bill. We did a five hour trip to Sunshine Reef on Friday morning. Conditions were a lot better than expected with around 10 knots of southerly breeze and a light current to the north. We caught Spanish mackerel, tusk fish, snapper, grass emperor, coral trout, moses perch and tuna."
Laguna Bay was mostly good for tuna this week with jelly bean mack tuna in close and the bigger longtails further out along Halls Reef and at Jew Shoal.
COASTAL: Mike Sultana, Northshore Bait and Tackle... "On the beaches, the Noosa North Shore will again be the spot to be, or to be more precisely, the stretch between Teewah and Double Island Point. With the full moon phase, bigger tailor have been on the mind of most anglers heading that way. Fresh mullet, pilchards and bonito fillet have all done the job for the bait anglers. Fishing the low light periods or at night has been the most successful.
With the swell on the open beaches dropping off as the rough weather moves on, whiting, bream and dart will be hungry and sure to respond well to prawns, worms and smaller baitfish like hardy heads and whitebait. No need to cast a mile as most of the time they are just about swimming at your feet."
ESTUARY: The estuary system, like offshore, took a bit of a pounding this week with strong winds and heavy rain keeping most anglers indoors from Saturday afternoon until Tuesday night. Come Wednesday morning, though, it was just a memory with mirror like conditions and lots of activity on the water.
It was 'murky as' throughout the system but that's all part of the life cycle in out rivers and creeks. In fact the 'flush' triggered the prawn run, pushed the mullet into the lower estuary and got the mud crabs on the move. Under the circumstances the top of the tide worked best this week with the more resilient species like bream and flathead active down towards the river mouth and, together with the odd trevally, queenfish and mangrove jacks, in the Woods Bays.
Report and photos from Jimmy Free, Noosa River Fishing Safaris... "Hey Bill. This week we caught flathead at the river mouth and (along with golden trevally and bream) in the Woods Bays. Pictured (above) is Fiona from Friday's charter and Mick from Monday's. Fiona's flathead was about 65cm and Micks about 55cm. Both released. There were also lots of barbwire queenfish in the Woods Bays feeding on very small baitfish. The Hilton and Gympie Tce stretch was pretty good early in the morning for schools of GT's harassing the bait schools. Apart from that, we caught flathead and bream up around Tewantin."
And Cristy Uechtritz sent this in on behalf of her son Fynn, who is pictured above... "Early Sunday morning fishing in the Woods Bays. Fishing was a pain with swarming sandflies and the rain. Missed a big flathead earlier but made up for it with this fish, caught and released on the Daiwa Double Clutch."
Before the fresh impacted too seriously, the mangrove jacks were still quite active. From Rob Morris, below right... "Hey fellas. Went out on Thursday night and found a few prawns. Was finally able to convert one to a jack. Was caught on a 15cm live tiger prawn at Lions Park. Kept for the bbq. Went 48cm."
And Deborah Lloyd sent us this brief story... "Caleb and Dex (above left) with a mangrove jack. Caught Friday night on a live winter whiting in the Noosa river. Length 53cm." Short and sweet entry but good enough to win the dynamic duo this week's $100.00 Tackle World Noosa/ChaseBaits Fish of the Week prize.
By the way. For those that enjoy a spot of crabbing, now is the perfect time to put in a few pots out. With the recent rains and cooler temperatures there are more about and they are still full and super sweet. There are many myths about the best bait but the most consistent has been good old fresh mullet.
FRESHWATER: Grant Budd, Northshore Bait and Tackle... "The impoundments have gone quiet after the rain. Lake Macdonald is over 100% and spilling. Big downpours tend to shut things down so have your sounder on and find the fish before you start casting. Use high vibration lures like the Hot Bite Gang Banger V2 spoons and try different retrieves until you crack a pattern that triggers a bite. Borumba is at 78% and, as always, is hard to navigate. The timber is a dangerous place and even experienced anglers have hit trees only a couple of inches below the surface at speed. Use electric motors once beyond the float line and be on the lookout. The bass are deep in the snags right now and the Hot Bite Spectre assists are proving a consistent performing lure.