Main menu

2009 Fishing Reports

FISHING REPORT: How to lure a SNAPPER 02/07/2009

HOW TO LURE SNAPPER


Can you believe the year is half over?  Everyone seems busy, busy, busy! The kids are making the most of their holidays by inundating the shopping centers, businesses are madly getting the books in order for the end of financial year audits and anglers coast-wide have been taking advantage of some brilliant flat days on the water.  This is what July is all about!  Last week snapper was the main focus, with bait presentation and best rigs to use featuring.  This week, we'll take a look at best techniques to use and tips when using lures for snapper.

 

Bouncing a 6-8oz snapper lead with two big suicide hooks in a paternoster rig is great for deep water fishing at The Barwon Banks for instance.  If you have never heard of the term ‘paternoster' before, it is any style of hook rig where the leader is tied to a fixed lead/sinker, the hooks then are on droppers above the lead. Usually one to three hooks are used on a paternoster rig depending on the species you are after. The droppers can be either blood loops tied directly in the leader or more often a stop knot, bead, swivel, bead, stop knot arrangement is used. This rig is used around the world on pelagic species where a decent depth is involved. See the picture below for a better idea.

Unfortunately this kind of set-up doesn't really cut it on the local inshore reefs. More finesse is needed to land the big one in the shallows. The fish tend to be much more finicky on the local shallow reefs. Sweetlip, parrot and snapper will often pick at the bait until there isn't any left on the hook when you have heavy lead. You occasionally feel the fish pulling away with the bait in their mouth, but generally once you apply pressure, they drop it. In this situation you either need to be really good at knowing when to strike or change your tackle to a lighter running sinker rig or floater.

 

Floated baits are un-weighted and usually suspend in mid water or slowly sink to the bottom. If the current is strong, then a small ball sinker can be put above the hook to help it get down deeper. Baits generally get smashed on the way down or when the boat jerks up and down with the wave action. Bait runner reels like the Abu Garcia Premium and Freeliner range are ideal for fishing floater style rigs because of their twin drag system. After casting the bait out, you set the bait run bottom drag as light as you can without have major over runs. When the reef fish picks up the bait in its mouth it can swim off without feeling any weight. Once the fish does so, the angler winds the handle and engages the top drag, which is set somewhat tighter and as a result set the hook in the fish's mouth. I use the Freeliner and similar dual drag reels when exclusively chasing snapper and find the hook up rate is much higher than conventional spinning reels.

 

Apart from being hard fighting fish, snapper are one of the best eating fish in the sea. If bled and put in an ice slurry soon after capture snapper fillets are delectable.

The best times for snapper fishing are dawn, dusk and over night and around the bottom or top of the tide. Drifting is a particularly good way to find snapper. Once you get onto a hot bite, anchor and berley up. Otherwise look for a rise in depth and try to anchor so that your bait ends up on the edge of or on top of the rise.

 

Soft plastics: The 4 inch Berkley Power baits and Gulp 5 inch Jerk shads are always a mainstay to have on hand in the tacklebox. The whole range of colours work, but I have found the best to be glow, smelt, nuclear chicken and chartreuse pepper neon. Jig heads with heavy gauge 3/0-5/0 hooks are needed to avoid losing the fish through straightening or crushing of the hook. Jig head weight can vary depending on depth, but in most cases a 3/8 to 1/2 oz will do. Start a berley trail and cast the plastics out as far as you can. Let the plastic work it's was to the bottom then jerk the rod upwards a couple of times, letting the plastic sink back down. If you don't receive a strike then wind it back up and repeat these steps over again. Also try drifting over a rise in the bottom working your plastic up over the bottom in an upward jerking motion.

 

Hard bodied lures:  The use of metal slugs and deep divers are not uncommon in coastal waters.  Trolling along rocky coastline at dawn and dusk can produce good snapper. Close in deep water off the rocks at Coolum, Noosa National Park, Point Cartwright and Caloundra are very productive areas. A range of deep divers made by Halco and RMG in a variety of colours have proven popular over many winter seasons to date. Snapper will feed in mid to deep water, so once you know the depth try to work the lure around half way down and you should be within their strike zone. The Scorpion Crazy Deep by RMG dives to 8 metres and would be perfect for working areas like Currimundi Reef and the Inner Gneerings. Also, try to look for baitfish, structures and spots that show on the sounder and drag your lure past in the hope of hooking up.

 

These big pink knobbies of the sea are well worth a try during the winter months and considering we are already a third through winter - you better get your skates on! So be sure to take the boat outside and chase these fun, tasty fish.


LOCAL FISHING REPORT

Noosa: Coral trout, snapper and long tail tuna from Sunshine Reef. Tailor and good sized dart along north shore. Trevally and tailor in Woods bay.  Luderick form the rock walls at the river mouth. Flathead throughout the lower reaches.

Maroochydore: Cobia to 24kg, snapper and coronation trout from the Barwon Banks. Parrot and snapper from Murphy's reef. Tailor and bream along north shore. Bream, tailor and jew to 89cm in the cod hole. Bream from the lower reaches.

Kawana: Snapper to 3kg, moses perch and parrot from the 12 mile reef. Tarwhine to 1.5kg , bream to 800g and some big dart at dawn and dusk from Kawana Beach. Gar in the sand basin and along La Balsa wall.

Caloundra: Flathead to 68cm on small lures on the north western tip of Bribie Island. Trevally and cod on lure in Pelican Waters. Chopper tailor and bream in the channel out from the boardwalk on the top of the tide.



FISHING REPORT: Snap to it with SNAPPER 25/06/2009

SNAP TO IT WITH SNAPPER FISHING

Snap to it because there’s a cold snap at present which means the snapper will be snapping up our snappy looking baits this weekend! If you haven’t noticed the subtle theme of this report yet – it is all about snapper fishing in the great winter conditions we are experiencing at present.

Now many of you are probably groaning every morning when your lovely warm tootsies hit the cold tiles as you scamper to the bathroom.  But this frosty weather is an aphrodisiac for the snapper on their annual breeding pilgrimage.  These breeding snapper are usually rather hungry and that is just what the snapper fishing fraternity are hoping as they rise before the sun comes up and hit the water in search of a prized ‘knobby’ to bring home for the family.

Pre-winter we featured some of the basic techniques of snapper fishing on local reefs to prepare readers for this year’s snapper season.  Now that we are in the thick of the snapper fishing season, (and strangely as the end of financial year sales come to an end) many of the national tackle companies have decided to bring out new products, many being excellent for chasing snapper.

Fishing the shallow inshore reefs tests an angler’s skills and hard fighting snapper will put tackle to the ultimate test.  Some of the new products I’ve had a sneak peek at this week and coupled together to make ideal snapper rigs include:

If you want to use a Light Spinning rig, consider the Abu Garcia T-Alloy 4500 spooled with 20 lb braid on a 7foot 8-15kg range Wilson’s Live Fibre rod. The next level up is a Medium Spin outfit consisting of an Abu Garcia Cardinal 806 spooled with 30lb braid on a 6foot 6inch 10-15kg range Live Fibre rod. If you prefer overhead outfits, then the Okuma Magsystem reel with 30lb mono on a 7foot 15-24kg range Live Fibre rod is pretty good.

Other tackle which is tried and tested, never letting me down is leader by Shogun or the Surecatch high tensile leader in 50-80lb breaking strain.  Hooks, sinkers and sinkers are also important, to get the best results make sure you have nice sharp hooks or invest in some chemically sharpened ones like the Mustad 5/0-7/0 4200BLN or Gamakatsu 6/0-8/0 Octopus hooks.  Size 2 – 4 rolling swivels and a variety of ball sinkers are necessary as well, just rig the correct size to suit the strength of current.

I use the Mustad 4200BLN hooks over the normal 4200’s because they are chemically sharpened and believe me they are exceptionally sharp!  This is because of the MT point which is designed to be sharp and piercing. These hooks can be ganged or tied on a snook rig as required.  For an added advantage, use about 8cm of 2mm lumino/lumo sleeves above your hook. This not only attracts fish to your bait as they are inquisitive and will minimize the chances of being bitten off. Just add a drop of nail polish to the end of the lumo tube up against the knot to keep it held fast. The tubing increases abrasion resistance and therefore minimizes bust offs.

Bait presentation and quality can mean the difference between a 5kg snapper and a barely legal fish. Big reef fish don’t get to their size by accident. They are efficient at busting off anglers, stealing bait off the hook and become very picky with exactly what bait they will eat. Anglers that want to catch trophy fish go the extra mile with quality well-presented bait.

Fresh bait is the best, but isn’t always readily available. If you can find a school of yakka or slimy mackerel then you should use a bait jig to collect a few, as they are great live or good fresh. Local caught squid can be caught using squid jigs and are about the best bait you can get for big snapper. If these baits are too hard to come by, then pop down to your local bait and tackle shop and buy a few fresh mullet. This is one of the cheaper flesh baits available and it works wonders on wide variety of reef species.

Mullet fillets are as tough as nails and can be cut into what ever shape you like. I find long slender strips of fillet pinned in the top third with the tail section flapping in the current to be very successful. Whole frozen local squid are also excellent bait for big reef fish. Rig them on a set of gangs or snelled hooks so that there is a hook in the point of the fish and one in between the eyes. I prefer to fish with two snelled hooks in whole baits, as it allows them to move more freely and naturally through the water. When you buy bait pick the best quality you can find.

Tackle and bait is the starting point for catching a big knobby.  Temperatures below 10degrees are sublime for snapper fishing, just be sure to rug up to avoid catching a cold!  Next week the focus will be on technique and the use of soft plastics for snapper.  Get out amongst the action or ‘snap to it’ as my wife likes to say when my list of chores is yet to be started!

LOCAL FISHING REPORT

Noosa: Bream to 1kg and dart in good numbers from North Shore.  Tailor from 2 to 3.8kg from the river mouth. Flathea din Weyba Creek and along the Tewantin stretch. Luderick from the rock wall at the river mouth. 

Maroochydore: A 70cm flathead was caught on fresh mullet from the downstream end of Chambers Island. Bream form the mouth and the Coffee Rock along Mudjimba. Big whiting and grunter bream between Chambers Island and the river mouth.  Mud crabs on teh move around Cornmeal Creek entrance.

Kawana: Small snapper and bream from the Kawana Rock wall. Gar in the sand basin and along La Balsa wall. Dart and a few bream off kawana beach. 

Caloundra: Bream and dart along Currimundi Beach. Bream to 1.4kg in the deeper channels in the mornings. Plenty of big flathead between 55 and 70cm around the bar. 

scottholloway
Tasmanian visitors Scott Holloway and Stuart Hill were happy with the 4.5kg and 5kg snapper they caught at North Reef. (photo supplied by www.fishingnoosa.com.au)
rohanbruce
Sunrise Beach local Rohan Bruce boated this 5.3kg snapper in North Reef last week. (photo supplied by www.fishingnoosa.com.au)
neildale
Neil Dale fished a secret spot to bring in this huge jew on a live bait.
youngfraser
Young Fraser fished Goat Island for these beautiful flathead weighing in at 1.3kg each.

 

 

FISHING REPORT: Giving Burley a Go 19/06/2009

GIVE BURLEY A GO

In this day and age, no-one wants to be left behind with technology and newer, bigger, better, fast inventions. We love keeping up with the Jones' or ahead of them if possible, following fads and trends is just part of life now and most important; staying up to date with the ever changing face of our favourite leisure activities is a must. Fishing changes constantly - new tackle is developed each year, bait is slowly getting transformed into life-like rubberized versions with realistic scent to boot, fish-finding technology has made the "hunt" a whole lot easier and burley is now fully equipped with motion sensors and fish-seeking hook missiles. Well, the last one about the burley is a bit farfetched but the rest is very true. Burley is possibly one of the only elements of fishing that has changed little over the years.

A customer recently came into the shop asking why there wasn't more information on the internet about burley. Puzzled, I told the chap that there should be plenty of information online as any angler who is worth his salt would use burley and everything is on the internet! Little did I know that the term burley is used only in Australia, and the term is chumming in other parts of the world. Chumming came about in the 19th century in California when fish guts and pig's heads were tossed off the end of a pier to bring the sharks in for tourists to see.

For those anglers looking for burley recipes online, be sure to type the word chum into the search - results will be plentiful including great recipes from America and local recipes with Chum dog food in the ingredient list!

The use of burley is by far the best way to attract fish from all over the place to your bait via a trail of food particles. It is commonly used by boat and bank anglers in the river and in offshore waters to increase your catch rate. Not many anglers use burley off the beach but if the correct technique is used in the surf gutters there can be great advantages.

HOW TO USE BURLEY:

Current, tide and wave action are two strong factors that influence where your burley will end up. Make sure you take these factors into consideration when positioning a burley dispenser. A small cylinder style burley pot with plenty of small holes or slits that allow a slow and steady flow of burley is the only instrument that you need. Homemade pots are cheap and easy to make - head to Bunnings and get some PVC pipe from the plumbing section if you are handy and creative, or pick up a readymade pot from your local tackle store for around $10. Attach the pot with a length of rope to your boat, a tree or a sand spike in the sand so that the burley can disperse gradually within close proximity to where you are fishing.

If on the beach you want the burley bucket to sit just in front of you and be washed around in the shore break so small amounts are released with each surge. Depending on the current and the waves, place the pot up current so that the burley ends up in the general area where your bait is sitting. When you re-cast your bait out, make sure it lands on the upside of the burley pot and with the current, it sinks into the trail.

BURLEY TO USE:

Any fishing scraps and off cuts from cleaned fish can be used as burley. Chook pellets, bread crumbs, old bread, pilchards and prawns are also good. When using pellets or bread, it is well worth adding a small amount of 100% tuna oil to give the fish plenty of sent to follow. The main aim is to crush or cut up all of the solid material into small pieces that will slowly break up and flow out of the burley buckets holes.

If you want to keep costs down buy yourself a second hand food processor or a meat grinder. Blitzing up old bread into crumbs and then adding minced up meat and seafood scraps so that you get a fine composition. Then you can freeze good handfuls of the mix into old stockings (tied off and bagged) - check first before you raid your other half's hosiery draw though!

Waste not - want not: this old saying is what my granddad lives by - he is the king of burley. Grandad added old leftover bait to his mixture. Rather than throwing old bait into the river after a day's fishing, he would process it into a fine paste and add to breadcrumb mixture. Prawn heads, squid, whitebait or any pilchard as well as the frames and guts of any fish he caught went into the freezer for the next burley making session!

One recipe that I did happen to come across on the internet which sounded pretty scrumptious is as follows:

5 kg block of Pillies.
3 kg bag of Flour.
2L Tuna oil.
Optional to add a bag of cat or dog biscuits. If you do add them, give the mix about 5 or 6 hours to marinate.
Plus all your old bait, fish frames, meat & table scraps.
Blend it all together in a 20lt bucket, ensuring everything is a thick paste. Adding some water to help it mix and pour better. Use a paint mixing attachment on a drill to assist. Pour the burley mix into old cordial/milk bottles and freeze. This should be enough to make up 10 or 12 bottles.

I am keen to try this mix and report on the results in the coming weeks. On a last note, make sure that you don't go over board when you do use burley as the fish will gorge on it and will be less likely to eat the bait you are offering. Fish will travel long distances along a burley trail to reach the source. The stronger the scent in your trail means the fish will travel from farther distances. If you do a lot of fishing and have never tried using burley to attract fish then maybe it's time to fill your burley pot and give it a try.

LOCAL FISHING REPORT

Noosa: Snapper to 6.5kg, a 7kg bar checked trout and cobia to 12kg from North Reef. Cobia from Chardon's Reef. Snapper to 6.5kg on trolled bait from Jew Shoal. A 10.5kg golden trevally was taken from the rocks off Double Island Point. Luderick from the rock walls at Main Beach. Tailor, bream and dart in good numbers along the north shore. Tailor and trevally in Woods Bay and around the river mouth. Flathead from the mouth and off Petrie Bay Park.

Maroochydore: Mac and long tail Tuna between Old Women Island and Point Cartwright. Sweetlip to 3kg and a few small snapper around Old Women Island. Grunter above Bli Bli Bridge. Bream to 1kg from the cod hole and river mouth. Flathead and chopper tailor from Cotton Tree. Jew to 7.5kg, tailor and trevally above the cod hole. Tailor to 2kg and a few good bream along the North Shore.

Kawana: Snapper to 4kg, parrot, sweetlip and cod from Murphy's. Dart, bream, tarwhine along access 4, 9 and 15 in the Kawana stretch. Good schools of gar in the sand basin and along La Balsa wall. Chopper tailor fro the rock walls and Point Cartwright in the mornings. Bream and trevally in Kawana Waters Canal.

Caloundra: Snapper and sweetlip from Brays Rock and the Coffees. Tailor from the bar. Queenfish and trevally in the canals. Big flathead at the mouth of Bells Creek. Quality bream from the boardwalk and in Pelican Waters.

garywilkinsgrhamanthes7.5kgjewcodhole

Gary Wilkinson and Graham Anthes like trolling hard bodied lures through the cod hole during the week for enjoyment. They had an excellent run this week and loaded the boat with tailor, trevally and a 7.5kg jew.

andygunn6.2kgspangled4kgcodcurrimundi

Andy Gunn is a strong believer in establishing a solid burley trail when fishing on offshore reef systems to attract the big fish. His system paid off last weekend, when he fished Currimundi Reef for spangled emperor to 6.2kg, cod to 4kg, snapper and moses perch.

chadcoreystevens3.5kgtailormarcoola

Chad and Corey Stevens had a good session on Marcoola Beach with this 3.5kg tailor taking their pilchard rig over night.



 

FISHING REPORT: Bream Fishing Part 2 12/06/2009

WITH BAITED BREATH... BEST BAIT FOR BREAM

As the temperatures test our resolve and continue to drop both day and night, the bream anglers amongst us are rubbing their hands together with glee.  Over past week bream numbers have become stronger and stronger, especially due to the recent full moon over the long weekend.  For those of you with sheepskin line waders, aim to be hitting the beach or river mouth in the dead of the night to make the top of the tide from midnight onwards.  The larger tides high tides overnight will be very popular among bream anglers wanting to catch a feed. For bream a number of things are important like bait, tackle, technique, location but most of all it is imperative you don’t scare off the timid little bugger!

Bream are notorious for being the most fickle and flighty species in salt water.  They are the Chihuahuas of the fish world – finicky, fragile, precious and...women love them because they are one of the cuter fish out there!

Bait:

Bream are mildly predatorial and fed for their territory by eating the small crabs, prawns and bait fish that pass by.  That said, you will not find a bream attacking a big jack who has decided to take over its home.  Bream are not past playing the scavenger role as they rarely pass up on any easy tasty feed that might present itself. Burley trails set up for larger species regularly attract good size bream coming in for a free feed or hungry bream smashing at larger than usual baits meant for bigger fish will test your patience.

Although bream are opportunistic feeders that will pretty much scavenge on anything, over many years working at Swan Boat Hire I have seen a few stand out baits. When it comes to high turnover baits; fresh prawn and mullet flesh are at the top. Fresh and live baits are generally the best, the list following is worth a look:

Live Bait: Sand worms, blood worm, prawn, herring and small poddy mullet.

Fresh Bait: Pike, herring, mullet, yakka, slimy mackerel, gar and squid used as cut baits.

Frozen Bait: Whitebait, frogmouth pilchard, baby blue W.A pilchards, mullet gut, chicken gut, hardy heads, mullet fillets, bonito fillets, prawns and squid.

Strips of flesh bait, pilchards and prawns can be soaked in tuna oil to increase the chances of a hook up. The oil slick caused after marinating baits is enough to attract bream from far away.

The bite you are looking for in a successful bream hook-up can be one of several sensations including a soft repetitious tap tap tap, a long slow drag, heavy weight pulling down on your rod, and rarely but still possible; a sudden hit and theft of your bait in a true mangrove jack fashion.  Once hooked Bream let you know they are on the other end and give up a good fight right to the bitter end.

Locations:

There are a few general locations worth trying in any river system as they are likely to hold bream. Bridge pylons, jetties, pontoons, oyster leases, sea grass bed, deeper holes, channels, around fallen trees, around and rocky bottom and river mouths are all good territory for bream to hang around.

Some of the Keys Hot Spots in your area include:

Noosa: Harbour Town, Munna Bridge and the rock wall in the river mouth.

Maroochydore: Pin Cushion, the cod hole and in the deeper channels surround Goat and Channel Islands.

Mooloolaba: The rocks walls at the river mouth, La Balsa Park stretch, McKenzie’s Bridge and the boat moorings.

Caloundra: The Boardwalk, the Military Jetty, the blue hole, Couchin Creek and the bar.

Many anglers have been hooked on catching bream from a young age.  Bream are the fish that my grandfather taught me to catch and if I hadn’t caught the fishing bug with bream some twenty years ago, I may be more of a Motorbike riding or Xbox playing kind of bloke today.

 

LOCAL FISHING REPORT

Noosa: Spanish mackerel, coral trout, sweetlip and snapper are still being caught off Sunshine Reef. Good tailor to 2kg, plenty of choppers and bream at the Noosa Bar and Teewah. A few tailor and trevally in Woods Bay and around the river mouth.

Maroochydore:A few large tailor and bream at dawn and dusk along north shore. Bream up to 1kg in the deeper channels over night. Plenty of Chopper tailor, trevally, bream and jew at the Motorway Bridge and at the river mouth.  Large flathead throughout the lower reaches.

Kawana: Snapper from the blinker around the 4kg mark. Quality bream and trevally from Kawana Waters. Dart, bream, tarwhine and tailor along the Kawana stretch. Tailor are schooling off Point Cartwright and off the rock walls at dawn and dusk. Bream and tailor from La Balsa Park stretch.

Caloundra: Chopper tailor from the bar and off king beach rocks. Good flathead and bream in the Blue Hole.  Plenty of bream up around 800-900g with a few over the kilo mark from the boardwalk over night and in the deeper channels of the passage.  Quality whiting from Bell’s Creek. Snapper, sweetlip and dart from Moffat heads.

 

jesssymestrevallytailorgoatisland

Jess Symes was trolling hard bodied lures in a hire boat in the channel out from Goat Island when she nailed a chopper tailor and trevally in quick succession.

 

joshuafullerjaxonsteelbreammaroochywaterscanals

Good friends Joshua Fuller and Jaxon Steel had a ball catching 31.5 and 33cm bream on prawns from their back yard in Maroochy Waters Canals.

 

andygunnsnappermurphys

Andy Gunn from the Maroochy R.S.L fishing club is addicted to snapper and last weekend he loaded up with a few good specimens on Murphy’s Reef, with the largest one weighing in at 6kg.

 

chazaverydartnorthshore

Chaz Avery loves the winter fishing conditions at present and had some fun catching swallowtail dart along the north shore with a whippy rod and some live sand worms.

FISHING REPORT: Winter means Bream 05/06/2009

WINTER = BIG BREAM

 

You know winter is here when it takes several hours for a packet of frozen pillies to defrost, you occasionally leave home in your slippers without realising and you won't think twice if someone offers to go and get a hot meat pie!

Though winter as we know it may not occur this year given the serious wet days we've already experienced in the first few days of winter. Winter is usually crisp and cool in the early mornings and late afternoons, with mild warm sun shining down on us in the middle of the day. This winter I am talking about is exactly what we need to welcome the big sea bream into the rivers with open arms.

All the rain fall in our catchments over the last few weeks has given the rivers another really good flush out and as a result quality pilot bream and school jew have been feeding throughout the lower reaches. The cool change and uncovering of vast rocky areas along our beaches and river mouths will provide much needed feeding and spawning grounds for our key winter bread and butter fish species, the yellow fin bream.

Yellowfin bream are one of Queensland's most popular estuarine species as they frequent our waterways year round. They are easily distinguished by their bright silver colour but depending on the colour of the water they live in, colourings can range from silver to a dark grey-green. The yellow coloured fins are also obvious indicators. Current records are 45cm or 4kg in size and these bigger fish are usually found in the surf but visit the rivers to spawn.

Bream form shoals of several hundred fish, and during spawning season which is right now, they swim with similar sized fish. This is great for anglers who do land a decent size fish as usually there will be more hanging around where it came from.

 

WHERE TO GO: In particular any rocky rubble or out crops areas will be the best places to target these fish. We have already seen good hauls over the past few weeks with a few fish up over the kilogram mark. The Mooloolah River has been firing well with really good numbers around the boat moorings, La Balsa Park and the rock wall. The lower reaches of the Maroochy River, in particular the mouth is fishing well with bait during low light periods with an increase in the number of bream around 35cm last weekend. The stretch between the Pincushion and Marcoola beach has a few nice gutters scattered along its length and the tailor fisherman have been hooking pilot bream on their pilchards!

 

WHAT TO USE: A well organised fisherman should have plenty size 6, 4 and 1 Mustad 4200D or 4202D saltwater series hooks to make up gangs. Or if using prawns or squid use size 4-1/0 Mustad long bait holders, small barrel swivels and a variety of ball sinkers. Rig this tackle with a running sinker style to allow the baited hook to wash around in the current.

Tru Turn hooks in style 711 are also very useful when rigged with black crane swivels rigged in between each hook. The swivels allow the hooks to twist and set in the fish's mouth, avoid destroying the pilchards flesh when inserting the gang hooks and help to minimise line twist. Always carry a small spool of bait mate elastic cotton in your tackle box to help lash your pilchard to the hook and avoid loosing it to tiddlers. Gangs are also ideal when fishing small baitfish like whitebait, herring, frogmouth pilchards and small strips of mullet fillet.

Get yourself a decent hook file or stone to sharpen the hooks in between fish. Most hooks are sharp new out of the box, but some even require a touch up before use. A small sure catch hook sharpening stone only cost $4.50 and is a very smart investment for any angler.

Soft plastics are also an option for the adventurous angler as bream really test your reflexes. Storm WildEye Twitching Nippers (unrigged) in pearl and Berkley 3" power bait in Pumpkinseed are popular. Rig these on the lightest jig head possible so that they have a natural action when worked. A 1/8oz jighead is sufficient because of it's fine gauge hook - always a good bet.

If a hard bodied lure is your preference then it would be worth trying some of the new products on the market such as the Hawk Chunk, Surecatch Crystal Clear Super Lucky 2 and the Izumi Ti-Sing Blade. They have been recently highly recommended for mid water action. Top water fishing demands a lighter option such as the River2Sea Baby Rover 50 or a Lucky Craft NW pencil 52 for a walk the dog style retrieve and the Hawk Splasher for a popping action.

And as always rod/reel-wise I can recommend the Silstar 6'6" Estuary Special with a 350 Mirage reel and 8lb mono line for bait fishing or the Berkley 7' 2-4kg drop shot rod, Surecatch Ovation 25 reel with 6lb braid for using lures.

 

WHEN TO GO: Make sure that you are well prepared for the craftiness of bream and stay out of the shallow water because bream can be notoriously timid and sensitive to movement, noise and lights, so try to conceal your identity. Dawn, dusk, top of the tide, overnight in the same spot and fishing structures like jetties, boat moorings, rocky areas and near the bar are all important facts to consider. Don't get caught when your out at the Pincushion and you lose your last set of gang hooks snagged on the rocks and the blokes fishing next to you are dragging in kilo size fish.

Over the coming weeks we will follow on from this article with more indepth tips on baits, rigs, and techniques for catching the bream.

 

LOCAL FISHING REPORT

Noosa: Snapper off Sunshine Beach and sweetlip from the Rocks at Coolum. Quality tailor and trevally in Woods Bay and around Munna Bridge. Mud crabs at the entrance to Noosa Waters Canal.

Maroochydore: Grunter 30-38cm between Bli Bli and the motorway bridge. Chopper tailor, bream and flathead to 45cm in the mornings at Cotton Tree.

Kawana: Dart, bream, tarwhine and whiting Kawana Beach between Point Cartwright and access 15. Quality bream in around the moorings. Plenty of gar along La Balsa Park. Tailor and bream off Point Cartwright.

Caloundra: Snapper and sweetlip around Brays Rock. Quality bream around the deeper holes and ledges from the military jetty. Flathead in the Blue Hole and opposite the Military Jetty.

 

adamwest1.7tailorchambersislandmulletstrip

Adam West was targeting bream with strips of mullet when he jagged this 1.7kg tailor off the point of Chambers Island.

 

 

geoffhobarttrevallyflatheadmouthpetriecreekhomemadelures

Using his own homemade lures worked a treat on these flathead and trevally caught by Geoff Hobart in the mouth of Petrie Creek.

 

 

johnhopcott1kgbreammooloolahriver

John Hopcott welcomed the cold snap and took home a 1kg bream from the Mooloolah River.

 

 

matthewplancktommyharveysnappermurphies

Matthew Planck and Tommy Harvey from Swan Boat Hire enjoyed a day off on the water and brought home a feed of snapper from Murphies.

Facebook YouTube twitter