Noosa mangrove jack
Andy Wyatt with a lovely mangrove jack. Photos: fishing

Huge variety off Noosa

Noosa coral trout
Justin Worth with a local reef coral trout.
Noosa longtail tuna
Roy Helling with brace of longtail tuna taken on small slugs.

DO you remember this time last year? With COVID-19 closing many areas including freshwater dams, lakes and parks as well as beach access and restricting charter operations, this year is very different… with no closures. We sure are lucky to live up here in paradise! Noosa variety

April is one of the best months to catch pelagics with North, Halls, Chardons and Sunshine reefs off Noosa the more popular areas. With a great variety of fish such as yellowfin and longtail tuna, mahi mahi, wahoo, spotted and big spanish mackerel on offer, it’s no wonder they’re popular because they all fight hard.

On the bottom, snapper, pearl perch, cobia, coral trout, sweetlip and many more are available. Pilchard floaters claim the fish feeding higher in the water column and traditional paternoster rigs are getting the best of reef fish. This is especially true for those on anchor with mackerel, a species that loves a good berley trail. If you’re chasing a feed of spotty mackerel, a great way to find them is to look for birds.Noosa variety

Mackerel will hang under feeding tuna, so it’s always worth casting at them. Increase your chrome slug to 40g to get the faster sink and then rip it in after 10-20 seconds for the bite. Easter is a great time to break out high-speed and diving lures, as the cooler water attracts bigger spanish mackerel and longtail in stronger numbers. It pays to mix up colours and dive depths to see what works on the day.

The Red Head and Pilchard colours are generally more popular, with many options from Nomad and Rapala. There will always be a debate over the use of wire or not. If in doubt, use single strand wire but only around 6”, which will offer you a little resistance to razor-sharp teeth. The Easter holidays are a great time of the year to dust off the camping gear and head up to Noosa North Shore.Noosa variety

Not known for huge fish during the day, you can always fish light and target the small bream, dart and whiting from the shore. One spot that does well, particularly for those with kayaks, is the stretch along Teewah Beach heading north. Be on the lookout for gutters with a good entry and exit point, as this will bring the better-quality fish in and make beach launching easier.

Spanish and longtail tuna are often caught offshore and you don’t need to paddle very far. Trolled bait and lures work best here, especially during an early morning high tide. Trevally are hot on the bite in the Noosa River, with anglers getting in on the action in Woods Bay and around Munna Point Bridge. Surface poppers have been working well at dawn, in particular the super fun sized Zerek Poparazzi and Jackall Chubby Popper 42 lures.Noosa variety

Tailor have also been coming into the river system and the mouth is the place to be. Pillies rigged on a set of 3/0 gangs is one of the most effective ways to target them. Look to fish during periods of big swell and a spring tide because this often pushes large amounts of bait into the river and predatory fish follow close behind.Noosa variety

Large flathead will also take this rig, so if you’re after them try using a snell rig. This is far better for flatties, particularly those destined for release. Away from the river mouth, Gympie Terrace fishes well for bream and whiting around the flats and drop-off, with prawns and worms the preferred bait. Tarpon and medium 500-650mm sized queenfish often show up around the marina once the sun starts to set.

Squidgy Prawn soft plastics and larger 70-80mm sized surface walkers will call these fish up for an aggressive surface hit. Be sure to keep your rod tips low and under the water even to prevent the fish from jumping you off once hooked. The freshwater of Lake Borumba is the perfect inshore option should conditions blow up offshore.Noosa variety

Before the water temperature drops, using small surface lures will work a treat early morning and towards the end of the day for bigger bass. Another great option is the Rapala X-Rap Twitchin’ Mullet, which is a slow-sink lure that swims during a slow retrieve and gets those fish not committing to a surface strike.

Most bass seem to be coming from timber, so slow-rolling soft plastics or hopping blades have been producing the goods. Tail spinners and vibration lures are also great options. These often entice fish when they won’t bite on anything else, and Jackson Iga Jig Spin lures are a small baitfish profile with massive vibration. A top tip for these is to crimp all the barbs, as bass tend to hit them very hard and take them down deep.

Now for all the latest information log onto for up-to-date bar and fishing reports, don’t forget to drop into Davo’s Tackle World, Davo’s Boating and Outdoor in Noosa and Davo’s Northshore Bait & Tackle at Marcoola for all the right equipment, bait and advice to get you catching.Noosa variety

For more Noosa fishing content, click here.

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About Grant Budd

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