A northern bluefin or longtail tuna from a recent Cougar One charter to Sunshine Reef. Photos: fishingnoosa.com.au

Big winter wet brings opportunities

What a change in the weather! From light winds, no swell and clear sunny days to big rain fall, increased swell and swollen rivers. Although this may sound bad the reality is it can be some of the best fishing, especially after a few days of calm. With the rains filling up the estuaries this sees the Noosa bar flush out a bit making for more defined channels and safer crossings. The bay area receives a good flush of baitfish making for shallow water fishing a must.

Offshore has been on hold this week due to conditions and of course lockdown! With the bad weather comes a break and the reef fish will certainly be feeding hard once the bar becomes navigable once more. Sunshine Reef should be firing and there will be some huge sweetlip and emperor hanging around the ledges. Coral trout and smaller cobia will also be around. With 2 weeks remaining before the annual snapper and pearl perch closure now is the time to try and catch a few.

Snapper are a popular target and they love a floated pilchard on a 4/0-5/0 gang hook and mono line. Mono lines float and present baits better than braided line. If you run braid then use a lengthy top shot of mono like the Shimano Tiagra in 30lb. Another great option are the Shimano Baku Baku jigs. These look like small octopus and have a silicon skirt and twin hooks attached. In the light current and swells this skirt swims creating a lot of interest from bigger fish.

Off the beaches we are hearing a few more consistent reports of smaller tailor hanging around first light. These fish move in schools so if you see any birds diving or bait fish showering it is likely to be a big school smashing them. This is the time of year when having some 30-50 gram chrome slugs is a must. Many anglers will want to run heavy leaders to prevent bite offs. A top tip is to use a bite leader which is a short length of 40lb fluorocarbon attached to your lighter main leader. This ensures better presentation and casting.

Joshua Gameiro won last week’s $100.00 Tackle World Noosa/ChaseBaits Fish of the Week prize with this 70cm jewfish which he caught and released in the upper estuary.

The river will be running hard and a new colour resembling chocolate milk. With all the fresh coming down from the everglades you would be wise to focus all attentions to the lower part of the river around the mouth, Dog Beach, Woods Bays, Frying Pan and the Sound.

Now is a great time to use prawn style soft plastics as all estuary fish eat prawns. Look at the small Chasebaits flick prawn, MMD soft prawn and Zerek ultimate shrimp. These all work on flathead, trevally, big bream, queenfish and jacks if about. For bait anglers live baits work very well during murky water conditions as its all about vibration. Fish will be using their lateral lines to sense prey now that the visibility is greatly reduced. A great part of dirty water is you can fish heavier so 12-15lb leaders can be used as there are some big flathead turning up.

Lastly, freshwater has seen the dams and lakes in the areas rise. Lake Macdonald is over 105% and overflowing and Borumba is holding steady at 80%. In both areas try and find the deeper cleaner water as the dirty colder water is often void of fish life. All fish, especially dam fish like stability and they will search for it. Smaller presentations, soft plastics and jigs will work well and if using hard body lures try longer pauses if not getting bites. Cold water often shuts the bite down so leave the lure in the school for longer to trigger a bite.

Now for all the  latest information log onto www.fishingnoosa.com.au for up to date bar and fishing reports, don’t forget to drop into Tackle World Noosa, Noosa Boating and Outdoors and Northshore Bait & Tackle in Marcoola for all the right equipment, bait and advice to get you catching. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and remember Tight Lines and Bent Spines!

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