Quality flathead test Tin Can Bay anglers

G’day crew, sorry I’ve missed the past couple of months. Between the shop, work, kids, sick kids, a new kid, Covid, staffing issue and life in general… sometimes things get a bit hectic. But hey, we’re still smiling and sneaking out for an occasional fish.

With August and September behind us and the days starting to warm up, you can tell summer isn’t too far away now.

In Tin Can Bay, the water quality has remained a bit of a problem for the past couple of months, which made fishing in the bay a little tough. Though with the lack of rain during most of August, it seems to finally be clearing up.

A gun weekend for Jed Lee who caught a nice Tin Can Bay golden trevally.


Squidding has certainly proven to be a tough gig throughout winter and decent numbers were only caught towards the end of the month.

Moving around and hunting for them was the key, and a little birdy told me that at present, black jigs worked best with the darker water.

Flathead have been on the hunt, with numbers and quality of fish right up there. High 50cm to lower 70cm models have been reported throughout the Great Sandy Strait. And 4-5’’ soft plastics hopped off the bottom and bounced across the flats for the last of a run-out tide and the first of the flood have been working well.

Also, trolling small diving hard-bodies such as the Zerek Tango Shad in the 1-2m divers is the way to go. Trolling for flathead is a great way to cover ground and a very effective way to find where the fish are laid up.

Some might say it’s a lazy way to fish, but as the saying goes, ‘work smarter not harder’.


Neilo Moy took a nice nannygai.


Finally, we have seen a decent number of golden trevally turn up in the local waterways. These fish are great fun and are normally in good numbers throughout the local creeks in the cooler months.

But – with this year being what it has been – the predicted fishing has been turned on its head for the most part. Goldens will take a variety of offerings, from trolling a Zerek Tango Shad for a flatty to the whiting fisho soaking a yabby.

But I would say that most of the crew targeting goldens are doing so on small micro jigs and are mainly using Palms Miniature Dax in 10 and 14g and also Palms Slow Blatt Cast Wide in 20g.

Rodger Fuss and a cracker amberjack caught off K’gari.

I’m a fan of MG-98 and H-49, but to be frank, all the colours work. A 7’ 10lb outfit with a 2500 is perfect for them, loaded with 6-10lb and a 10-20lb fluorocarbon leader, with my preferred choice being Sunline FC Rock.

Whiting have been showing up in good numbers too, with a mix of divers and summer whiting in the mix. Fishing yabbies and fresh worms at the mouths of Carlo, Teebar and Kauri creeks on the change of tides has seen fishos bagging a good feed and there have been a few nice flatties in there too.

Some great reports have come in from the flats up around Poona, and while the lure fishos have struggled, bait fishos have been cleaning up!


Shannon Dawes kept the family fed with a few nice whiting.


Bream don’t seem to have minded the tannin-stained water of Tin Can Bay inlet over the past few months, with great captures reported.

Fishing pealed prawn, mullet gut and strips of fresh mullet on a light running-ball sinker rig, fished back into the structure, is a sure-fire way to bag a feed. Also, try using small crank baits twitched tight into the snags for a bit of fun.

With the daytime temperature starting to creep up, anglers are thinking about dusting off their mangrove jack gear.

Though keener fishos have already started to find a few on the warmer days at the end of August and into September.

At this time of year, it pays to put in a few extra casts at the same snag to try and wake them up or to annoy them into eating your offering.

And, it may be an idea to downsize your lure of choice – everyone can always eat one more jellybean.


Amber Moy with a tasty looking red emperor.


Offshore fishing action has been red hot and catch reports spread from slightly out the front of Rainbow – producing good-sized snapper and jewfish – to wide and far, with the inshore reefs producing the better-quality snapper.

Further afield, good numbers of red emperor were caught – along with nannygai, pearl perch, tuskfish, parrotfish and some thumping amberjack – to stretch the arm and test the tackle.
Well, that’s a wrap from me, so until next time, tight lines and take care.

Remember, if you’re in beautiful Tin Can Bay, pop into the shop for a chat. You’ll find us at the Tin Can Bay Marina on Emperor St – look for the four big white sheds out the front – The Chandlery Bait and Tackle, for all your boating and fishing needs.

See you all soon.

About Chris Rippon

Check Also


Hardstand is hard luck for some

Noticed the number of boats on hardstands or in dealerships awaiting service personnel and or …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *