Mitch with a sensational kingfish which belted a West Coast popper.

Pursuing pelagics in summer

It may have been small, but Sheldyn was stocked with his baby spanish mackerel.

AT the time of writing, there have been a few spotted mackerel caught on local reefs, along with several very under-sized spanish mackerel. The water temperature has been rising slowly but not as quickly as in previous years.

As we head into hot weather, the water temperature has teetered on 23C ,and if the northerly wind comes in it plummets back to 19C, with the clarity being greatly reduced and the water having that cold green look. We need a few good constant southerly wind systems to get the temp consistently over 23C and that cobalt blue water to move in before mackerel start chewing. Pursuing pelagics

For those lucky enough to be in the right spot at the right time, there were fun times to be had with spotties taking bait and lures. Plenty of small fish are available, though many are skinny and just legal, with a few bigger models mixed in. The quality and quantity will improve with water conditions.

Out a bit wider, good mahi mahi have been caught on the fish aggregating devices, and black marlin are showing their faces already. On local reefs, nice snapper are available, when you get a break in the raging current. Solid kingfish are also around and are super impartial to a big surface lure.

Inshore, you are in for a great time in the creeks, with substantial flathead on the chew, as well as whiting and bream. But most of all, the prized mangrove jack has awoken from its winter slumber and is starting to terrorize well-presented live bait and lures. Hitting the creeks after a storm is the perfect time to target the old red dog.Pursuing pelagics

They seem to really turn it on – bashing and crashing anything that moves. For something different, try targeting giant herring in creeks and skinny water. They are one of the best sportfish around, with absolute monsters on offer of over 1m long. They need to be handled carefully and returned to the water quickly to ensure a successful healthy release.Pursuing pelagics

They’ll take a live bait, lure or flesh bait. We’ve had a few very exciting mornings in the past pursuing this species, with well over a dozen fish and even more runs in the space of a couple of hours.Pursuing pelagics

Early morning is definitely the best. The coastal bars, except for the Gold Coast Seaway, all need a good flush. The Tweed River Bar still has a buildup of sand in the mouth and 100m or so out on the outer bank. Even though the dredge is in Currumbin Creek it is still very shallow, with the best time to navigate it near the top of the tide.Pursuing pelagics

You really have to keep an eye on the tide, otherwise you may find yourself stuck outside. Tallebudgera Creek Bar is also very silted up and can be super dangerous in any sort of swell. The Seaway is the pick of the bunch. Hope Santa has emptied his sack full of fishing gear at your place, and I wish everyone a much happier 2021.Pursuing pelagics

Screaming reels to you all.

For some inshore summer Gold Coast tips, click here!

About Heath Zygnerski

Heath has been fishing since the age of three and grew up fishing the mighty Georges and Hawkesbury rivers.

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