Fishing Report – 18 November 2022
We have had a bit of everything weather wise on the Gold and Tweed Coasts this week, from hot days (fuelled by Northerly winds) to a cool Southerly change, dropping the temperature down and pushing the swell up. Good news for the weekend, Saturday is looking like the pick of the days to head out, with light winds and plenty of sunshine. There may be some left over swell hanging around, so if you are thinking about heading offshore, just make sure that you have the most up-to-date forecast before planning your trip.
Last Friday night I ventured out with good mate Wayne Young and my daughter Jess, for a night-time Whiting session up the Nerang River. Wayne had put in all the hard work the day before, making sure we had the best quality live bloodworms for bait. we ventured up the river just before sunset to try our first spot. This was Jessica’s first night time Whiting fish and she did well land a nice 37cm fish on her first cast which was a great sign, after that the school must have moved on and things were pretty quiet with small Whiting stealing the baits. We ended up moving multiple times during the night trying to locate better quality fish, picking off a few fish each move. In the end we caught 25 nice Whiting between us for a great feed for both families.
If you are thinking about having a fish at night, it pays to have a good lighting set up that particularly shines near the rod tips so you can see when you are getting bites and also make it easy for other boats using the river to spot you at anchor. Another tip is to paint your rod tips white making it a lot easier to spot when you get an inquiry from a fish. I like to use a landing net just in case the fish are lip hooked, which can be a bit more common with the larger fish, to avoid disappointment boatside when you put so much effort into organising a trip. The gear of choice when targeting Whiting is; a longer 7 to 9ft light estuary rod with a very sensitive tip, matched with a small spin or alvey reel spooled with 6 to 9lb mono; a long 6lb fluro carbon trace with a running sinker rig consisting of either a 3 to 5 ball sinker, depending on run, and a size 6 short shank baitholder hook for worms or size 4 longshank baitholder hook when using yabbies.
You will find fish during both the day or night time but I do think the better quality fish bite more at night throughout the warmer months. Some good spots to try are the Tweed River, Tallebudgera Creek, Currumbin Creek, Nerang River, Wave Break Island, South and North arms of the Coomera River, Pimpama River, Jacobs Well, Cabbage Tree Point, Bedrooms and the Logan River. Best baits are live Bloodworms, Beach Worms and Yabbies.
Summers Coming, So are The Jacks!
With the weather starting to warm up it’s a great time to start looking for the hard fighting Mangrove Jack that the Gold and Tweed Coats are famous for, I have seen a few fish being caught the past couple weeks which is a good sign of things to come. We get some big Jacks on the Gold and Tweed coasts, given the large amount of structure there are plenty of areas to try your luck. When targeting Mangrove Jack look for bait in the area you are wanting to fish, early morning or night sessions are usually the prime time especially in busy traffic areas. The best areas to try your luck are natural rock bars, fallen trees that provide a spot to hide, around the edges of rock walls, bridge pylons, jetty posts, pontoons and around moored boats. These areas should also hold bait like herring, garfish, pike, mullet, silver biddies and prawns to name a few, live bait is a great way to target a Jack and can be a lot more productive than lure fishing. Jacks are not too fussy when it comes to dead bait either, I usually use mullet fillet, bonito fillet or butterflies yakkas. They tend to hit hard and will try to brick you back in their snag as quick as they hit,. A heavy drag setting is required to give them as little room to run as possible. The gear of choice I usually use when bait fishing is a 5-10kg rod, reel spooled with 20-30lb braid, 40lb leader with either a single or double hook rig made of size 6 black magic or mustad big gun hooks that are nice and strong. For the lure fishos prepared to put in plenty of casts when the fish hits it is very rewarding, soft plastics around the 5-inch size range rigged on heavy duty jig heads work well with white being a popular colour, hard body lures from around 10cm in length or surface walkers are poppers are also worth a go depending on the conditions. By-catch can be great fun to land as well, with Estuary Cod and Trevally being the main species encountered. Some good spots to look around man made or natural structures are the Tweed River, Tallebudgera Creek, Nerang River, Runaway Bay and Paradise Point Canals and Bridges, Coomera River main river and South arm, Jacobs Well, Cabbage Tree Point, Powerlines and the Logan River.
QUOTES FROM THE BOATS
Brad from Brad Smith Fishing Charters reports:
“I had hoped from last week’s report the big tides this week produced some outstanding fishing. The changes and differences between the high and low tides make a huge difference and this week they were extreme, making the critters feed like crazy. My business partner Clint and I were having a joke about it, as he had a thumper week on the Broadwater and we wondered last week’s blood moon and the outstanding fishing. The species caught this week were huge, a number of Flathead and juvenile School Jew and were supplemented by Whiting, Bream and my biggest Mangrove Jack of the season.”
Clint from Brad Smith Fishing Charters reports:
“We had some good Flathead fishing leading up to the full moon. Some days we caught 20 plus fish with some good size ones. The water temperature is still stuck on 22 degrees or so, which Flathead love. The cool water on the flats seemed to have pushed the big Whiting deeper, but with air temperatures rising this coming week and with Northerly winds we should see the schools of tings back and Mangrove Jacks firing up more. There has been plenty of small bait fish around, which means that using small lures gets you a heap of action. My favourites lately have been the Zman ST Grubz and Zman Prawnz. Both these new releases are 2.5 inch length, perfect for finesse presentation. They catch a stack of species for me including; big Flathead, Bream, Trevally, Sand Whiting, Tarwhine and Tailor. I like to rig them on TT Demonz 1/4 oz 2/0 H when fishing the flats. You can go lighter when the wind is light for more finesse. My favourite colour is definitely Houdini, but midnight oil, blood oil, and beer run also work great. All I do is cast them out, let them sink to the bottom, then single little hops and pauses. Ecogear ZX40’s in 440 colours are also working great, as are Samaki Vibelicious forktail 70mm in whitebait colour. Best fishing areas have been Sovereign Island, Crab island, Curlew Island, and Southport.”
“This coming week we should see come big Sand Whiting on the flats, and more Flathead also shallow. I like the tides coming up. Not too big not too small, just right! Let’s hope the wind chills out, we’ve seen enough lately.”
LINKS & INFO
Stay up to date with all fishing regulations in Queensland https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/fisheries
Fisho Tackle and Coomera Houseboat Holidays now have Hire follow the link to view http://www.coomerahouseboats.com.au/our-fleet-type/hire-tinnies/
Seabreeze is a great website to access a local forecast http://www.seabreeze.com.au/graphs/
Good luck with the Fishing. Brett