OFFSHORE: Not a bad week for the offshore brigade actually. Certainly an improvement on last week. Light to moderate (10 to 15 knot) variable winds dominated most morning sessions and with little or no swell, conditions on the local reefs were more than satisfactory. The afternoon sessions were less inviting, however, with fresh variable northerlies chopping up the waters and making the trip home from the more distant reefs a bit of a chore at times.
Out wide, the Barwon Banks produced jewfish, grass sweetlip and pearl perch on the shallower grounds with local squid, pillies and live bait all working well.. If you are looking for those bigger snapper the back of the banks is where you need to be. Look for areas around the 60-metre mark with good shows.
And a bit closer in there was an even great range of species to target. Double Island Point was particularly productive (and the shelter of the hills a blessing when the winds got up) and those with the bigger boats made the most of it. Report and photos (above) from Trekka 2 skipper Nat Turner... "Hi mate. We fished Double Island Point on Wednesday’s nine hour trip. The fishing was excellent and the conditions were pretty good too. We caught gold band snapper, pearl perch, large mouth nannygai, snapper, tuskfish, amberjack, hussar and moses perch. The current was trickling to the south-east.
And we did a nine hour trip with a bunch of our regular jigging customers (two of them are pictured above) on Sunday. We took advantage of the glorious conditions and headed east of Double Island Point. We opted to drift due to the steady current and the guys kept us busy unhooking fish from start to finish. Quality pearl perch were happy to hit the jigs along with amberjack and an abundance of plate sized snapper, while baits accounted for venus tuskfish, Maori cod, hussar and teraglin jewfish. We also caught a nice little tiger shark which was safely released. Cheers, Nat."
And from Cougar One skipper Mitch Bertacchini... "Hey Bill. We did a nine hour trip on Saturday to Double Island Point. The fishing was quite good with plenty of venus tuskfish, long nose trevally, snapper (as above left), moses perch, gold band snapper, coral bream and pearl perch. And we fished there again on Wednesday. Conditions were nice with a light southerly wind and a relatively flat bar. The fishing was quite good also with plenty of pearlies and tuskies about. (see photo above right). We also caught coral bream, snapper, samson fish, gold band snapper, frypan bream, moses perch and cod."
And back in along the middle reef belt, North Reef proved to be another hot spot. Report and photos (above) from Cougar One skipper Mitch Bertacchini... "We did a five hour trip to North Reef on Thursday morning. Conditions were absolutely beautiful. Flat bar, glass calm ocean and a light trickle of current to the south. We caught red emperor, pearl perch, moses perch, grass emperor, tuskfish and brown stripe sea perch."
Plus this from Trekka 2 skipper Nat Turner... "Hey Bill. Had back to back seven and five hour trips on Saturday in very good conditions. We had a productive morning trip at the top of North Reef catching good grass sweetlip (as above left), some quality pearl perch, gold spot cod, moses perch and tuskfish. The afternoon trip was a tad slow but we still managed to bring home Maori cod, large mouth nannygai, snapper, moses perch and tuskfish. Cheers, Nat."
And we received this from Travis Mcdonald... "Hey guys. Fished Stingrays on Saturday night in hope for some snapper. Landed a few fish then up early to catch the sunrise. After hooking many undersize red emperor - standard procedure, Marley (above right) hooked on to a sizeable one just as the light was up in full swing. Right on high tide with a westerly blowing. Great way to kick off the day. We named it Bob and it's going to be in Marley's belly tonight!"
COASTAL: Rob Bracey, Tackle World Noosa.... The rocks and open beaches were a worthwhile proposition this week with jewfish on the bite between dusk and dawn in the Yaroomba/Coolum area. "From Jesse Woroniuk, below right... "After months of late nights we finally landed our first jewfish! Caught at Coolum on a strip of whiting. Released straight afterwards." Whiting were in good numbers and well spread with the better quality fish coming from Castaways Beach, the northern end of Sunshine Beach (along with flathead) and the top end of 'A' Bay where tarwhine and bream were also on the bite.
Around the corner from there, rat yellowtail kingfish and trevally were active off the rocks at the Fairy Pools while flathead and whiting were biting between the rock groynes on Main Beach and around Teewah village on the Noosa North Shore. Tailor were active from there, up to the rocks at Double Island Point.
ESTUARY: Rob Bracey, Tackle World Noosa.... "Well, if you liked catching flathead you would have been in hogs' heaven this week with heaps of lizards out and about and responding well to all manner of baits and lures. Hot spots were the river mouth on the run-out and (along with whiting) the bottom of the Frying Pan. From Brock Hewitt, below left... "Got this big girl on a live prawn fishing for whiting on 4 pound line. Took a while to get her in but we managed with a pair of fish grips. Fishing the rock wall at the mouth. Released to fight another day... 83cm of pure log! Get the dog!"
Whiting and flathead were also active from the top of the Frying Pan to Goat Island. From Ryan Lukritz, above right... "Good session in the Noosa River on Sunday." And from Lachy Brady, below left... "Hey guys. I was out this morning! Got a good little story behind this one. Fishing the shallows and hooked a small flathead, then 2 seconds later after the first little rattle, bang it upgraded to a much larger model. Hooked myself an 84cm flathead who tried eating the smaller flathead! To my surprise I landed both fish however the smaller flathead was a bit worse for wear! Released to fight another day shortly after."
Still in the lower estuary, mangrove jacks were on the prowl between dusk and dawn around the Sand Bags while trevally were chasing a few baitfish in the Woods Bays. Whiting were also biting around the Munna Flats, off Munna Beach and, together with flathead and bream, in Weyba Creek. From Gerry King... "Hi Guys. My young fella Harry (above right) caught this nice whiting on a live worm off Munna Point."
There were also a few tarwhine in the system. From Dan Bedford... "Hi guys. I picked up some worms on Thursday morning and took my daughter Siena (below left) over to North Shore to fish the river out of the northerly. Was great! Cheers, Dan." There were also a few blue swimmer crabs out and about.
Upriver, flathead were active near the mouth of Lake Doonella and opposite the Council Chambers. There were also a few jacks on the bite there and further up between the lakes. From William Holland, above right... "Hi Bill. We are up at Noosa these holidays. We stopped into Tackle World and We asked Chicko how to get a mangrove jack. Getting a jack had been my dream for two years and I have spent countless hours chasing them. We got some lures that he recommended for jewfish (3" Berkley Power Bait Power Shrimp) and went for an afternoon flick up the river at John’s Landing. We saw some structure and dropped the lures down I hooked what it turned out to be a mangrove jack. I was so excited. I couldn’t believe it I finally landed a jack and it was because of Chicko at Tackle World. The fish, by the way, was safely released and shot off like a bullet. Thanks, William." His colourful catch and release (and even more colourful story) won William this week's $100.00 Tackle World Noosa/ChaseBaits Australia Fish of the Week prize.
From Jimmy Free, Noosa River Fishing Safaris... "Heya Bill. The river has been fishing pretty well and the weather has been kind to us also. The lower estuary is fishing very well for flathead at the moment and the Dog Beach is holding plenty of bream and whiting. The Woods Bays were a little hit and miss and at times we couldn’t fish it due to the amount of jet ski’s zooming past. Hopefully they're less in numbers because I’m running out of snapper leads 😂. Young Lenny (inset above right) caught and released this 83cm flathead while on a private three hour charter with us on Sunday morning. And Percy from Brisbane (above) caught and released this 73cm flathead at the Woods that afternoon. We also caught plenty of small bream and the odd flathead in Weyba."
FRESHWATER: Grant Budd, Northshore Bait and Tackle... "Away from the river the impoundments are firing with some huge bass caught at Borumba. They appear to be out and about on the flats and are taking blades and soft plastics. Having a small range of gear when targeting bass is important. Check out the many options of soft plastics and lures for all occasions. Don’t forget to purchase a SIPS permit for the freshwater which only takes a minute online."