Mitch caught his first ever flathead on a Broadwater charter with us, 76cm on a Daiwa Bait Junkie soft plastic and carefully released.

Broadwater brawlers on the bite

Ash and Matt with two nice school flathead caught on light tackle.
Ben from Melbourne with a beautiful big male blue swimmer crab.
Carmel did well to catch this 55cm flathead on 3lb line while fishing for whiting.
Solid buck mud crabs caught in the daytime after floods.
Ben with a 56cm flathead caught and released in the river after rain.

HI everyone, in March we are well into chasing and catching summer species here on the Gold Coast. If we don’t get too much rain, mangrove jack and big sand whiting are the main targets in the rivers. If floods arrive, these same species will be found downstream not far from river mouths for several weeks. Broadwater brawlers

So far this summer, the deluge in December resulted in excellent fishing locally, with school-size flathead, monster-size whiting, mud crabs, blue swimmer crabs, bream and tarwhine all turning up in big numbers at times. While we prefer to release 90 percent of our catches, a few customers have enjoyed fresh and delicious seafood dinners.Broadwater brawlers

Rain always helps the estuary systems and has done so for thousands of years. It did however pause our usual run of jack trips over the summer season, but that’s nature. One fish that always fascinates me is sand or summer whiting. This prolific and widespread fish has withstood a lot of fishing pressure yet is still around in high numbers in many areas.Broadwater brawlers

They don’t grow that big – a model over 40cm is a trophy fish – but they are a superb table fish and fight hard on light tackle. The big ones are also not easy to tempt, with finesse gear and stealth techniques required. Blue swimmer and mud crabs are also active during this month and, as per fish, are most easily caught during the lead up to and just after a new or full moon.

Heavy duty crab pots and fresh bait definitely make a difference to catch results. To avoid leaving harmful ‘ghost pots’, ensure you have a long enough rope on pots and avoid placing them in busy channels. Bream have been in plague numbers since the rain, as have their cousins, tarwhine. We occasionally take them both for granted in our lucky country, but they are both a light-tackle sportfish worthy of respect.Broadwater brawlers

Similar to whiting, it is amazing how many are in local estuary systems. As with all fish, stick to size and bag limits and only take home what you can eat that same night. Above all, as Ken Brown said, “Don’t destroy what you came to enjoy.” This phrase has stuck with me for many years since hearing it in my youth in South Africa.Broadwater brawlers

While we may often post many of our catches on social media and print, the truth is Brad Smith and myself have rarely reached bag limits on daily charters. We encourage you to do the same, for our kids’ and grandkids’ future. To book on a charter with myself or Brad, or if you have any fishing related questions, SMS 0432 990 302 or email fishingwithclint@gmail.com, or find us on Facebook at Brad Smith Fishing Charters.

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