Offshore fishing is definitely heading toward a change with many anglers waiting for the arrival of the big snapper and that consistent winter pattern. The smaller fish are certainly in good numbers and these are the best ones to keep due to their slow growth rates. Pan sized snapper are a huge amount of fun on 3-5KG estuary gear and light 12-15lb braid and 15-20lb leaders. Try using small soft plastics in the 4 inch range like Entice curly tail grubs on light 1/6th 3/0 and 4/0 jig heads. This lets them fall slowly and snapper are a sucker for this style of presentation. You will also pick up sweetlip, pearlies and maybe a mid water cobia or jewie will take your offering. There is a saying “the harder you go on the fish, the harder they go on you” This is very true and you will be surprised what you can get in on lighter gear. For everyone else its all about twin hook paternoster rigs like the Mustad rigs which come rigged with plenty of flash on the hooks which reefies love. While conditions are lumpy stay around Sunshine and Halls reef, enjoy drifting around and make sure you have a gang hooked pilchard floater out the back!
On the beaches a few tailor around the 35cm mark are starting to come through. Although small, 35cm is the legal minimum and if you are a jewfish angler there is no better bait. To set up for tailor make sure you are proficient at gang hooking pillies. If you need help make sure you ask us. You can try the tru-turn gangs which have a swivel which really helps free the hooks up. Bait wrap or thread is super important so always carry this as big casts can see fragile baits come off or easily taken by smaller fish. We are also seeing some good trevally and bream from around the headlands. These can be spun up, float fished with small chunks of mullet or soft plastics lightly weighted and cast into the wash. As always keep an eye on the swell and try to fish with a mate for safety reasons.
The Noosa River is enjoying a consistent winter pattern, with a good mix of species hitting decks throughout the system. Clear waters mean you have to step down in line thickness so leave the 15-20lb at home if daytime fishing. Another popular saying “fish light to get the bite” rings true this time of year so give it a go. Using 6-8lb braid and leader is a must. If lure fishing get yourself a high quality 8 strand braid and use Nitlon FC leaders for soft plastics and vibes. Flathead and bream can be found in good numbers from the coastguard toward the mouth. There are many drop offs, sand bags and rocky points to pick so give these a flick during the turn in the tides. If you are after a new flick stick then check out the Black Hawk rods which are on special. The 2-4KG rod is a perfect fast action lure rod.
If you fancy a bit of a trip why not head over Lake Cooroibah and fish between the lakes for something different. This area offers rock bars, deep holes and mangrove lined banks for snag bashing. Up here you tend to move away from standard estuarine species and find jewfish, mangrove jack and even the elusive threadfin salmon. These fish aren’t easily found but will take soft vibes, soft plastics loaded with pro-cure scent and flesh baits. You can also do a spot of slow trolling as the deeper waters allow for a mix of hard body lures. Take a look at the new Samaki Redic lures as these come in slow float and suspend options from 60mm upwards. From the marina toward the mouth various species of trevally can be found. With goldens becoming more of a target they are generally caught on smaller plastics and micro jigs. The Powerbait minnow in 3 and 4 inch are a favourite as they have great action when worked with fast taper graphite rods. Always have landing net setup and ready as they fight hard and will push light tackle to its limit.
Freshwater is showing signs of great fishing ahead for bass as we move into a consistent winter pattern. They are starting to school up and can be found in large groups. Soft vibes and small metal vibes and tail spinners are killing it right now. If you haven’t tried the Jackson Iga jig spinners you are missing out. These super small lures pack a lot of vibration. Be sure to flatten the barbs as the bass crunch these and take them down. These fish are also on the move so it is imperative to have sounders running. In traditional 2D mode, look for long drawn out arches all stacked up as this is a classic bass show. As for surface fishing, why not try once the sun has risen and started to warm the edges. This time of year it is not uncommon to see toga cruising around in sun bathed bays while sipping small flies off the top. With the swell and winds keep many from going offshore why not hit up your local dam or lake this week.
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 Davo’s Tackle World, Davo’s Boating and Outdoors in Noosa and Davo’s 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!