Fishing Report – 17 February 2023
Good news as we head into the weekend with a break in the weather seeing lighter E/NE winds and a drop in swell at the time of writing my report, giving fishos the best weather window we have seen for a while to hit the water. Just make sure you have the most up to date forecast before planning a trip.
Let’s check out a few options for the weekend and the week ahead.
The weather is looking favourable to finally head offshore in search of a feed. Given the current shallow state of the Seaway even a small swell may see waves breaking on a run-out tide, just use caution and common sense if you are planning to go offshore.
The recent swell would have stirred up the closer reefs – fingers crossed there will be a few nice fish on offer. The 18 and 24 fathom grounds off the Gold Coast will be well worth a look. As always try to get an early start and take advantage of the sunrise bite time. Have a good look on the sounder for signs of fish and bait holding in the area. I prefer to anchor up a get a burly trail going and try to pull any fish down current closer to your boat for you to target, drifting will also work although the closer reefs are a bit smaller making the drift runs fairly short. The main species to target will be Snapper, Spangled Emperor, Moses Perch, Tusk Fish, Trag Jew, Silver Jew and Cobia.
Out winder and current dependant, the fads on the 36 and 50 fathom grounds may be worth a look for a Dolphin Fish, given the recent weather they would have been left alone for a while and are hopefully keen to hit a lure or bait. You will also be in with a shot at a small Black Marlin trolling the same depths. Keep a keen eye on the sounder, the sky for bird life, and on the horizon for surface splashes and action from feeding fish. If the current is slower having a drop will be worth a go for a feed of Snapper, Pearl Perch Tusk Fish, Trag Jew, Moses, Yellow Tail Kingfish, Amberjack and Samson Fish.
Inshore the warmer weather and humidity has seen the feisty Mangrove Jack being caught in better numbers the past week. When looking for an area to target you are basically looking for somewhere that has some current flow, a bit of structure for the Jacks to hide in, and a supply of baitfish to feed on. Areas that have Bridges, Pontoons, Moored Boats, Rock Walls, Rock Bars, Snags and fallen trees will all be worth a go. Some good spots to have a look are the Tweed River, Nerang River, Currumbin Creek, Tallebudgera Creek, basically all canal Systems, Runaway Bay, Paradise Point, Coomera River, Jacobs Well and the Logan River. For the lure fishos, try a mixture of soft plastics in paddle bait around 4 to 5 inches long rigged on a heavy-duty jig head, shallow diving hard bodies and surface lures will also do then job. Live baits like Herring, Mullet, Pike, Garfish, Silver Biddies and Winter Whiting either unweighted or weighted depending on the structure you are fishing are very affective when the Jacks are switched on. My favourite dead bait is Mullet Fillet or half a small poddy Mullet lightly weighted – the Jacks just seem to smash these baits well with a good hook up rate. My normal outfit is either a medium to heavy rod, size 4000 spin reel spooled or bait caster with 30lb braid and 40 lb leader with a size 5/0 or 6/0 hook depending on what bait you are using. You will normally get a bit of bycatch such as Bream, Trevally and Cod in the same areas.
QUOTES FROM THE BOATS
Brad from Brad Smith Fishing Charters reports:
“Fishing was difficult this week with the low barometer and high temperatures typical of February. Cyclone Gabby is quickly moving away from the East Coast, thankfully we won’t be influenced much, apart from some bigger swell and moderate wind. We still managed to catch Whiting on MMD splash prawns at Tallebudgera creek, and Flathead on Ecogear ZX40 and breamer vibes in the deeper areas at Tweed River. There are also a Trevally and School Jew to be caught but it helps to get on the water early before it gets too hot and fish any holes that are showing bait on the fish finder.”
Clint from Brad Smith Fishing Charters reports:
“The fishing has been tough. Like Smithy said the barometer has been low and the water temperature hot which affects estuary fishing in a not so positive way. Night fishing works well this month, and we caught a few Mangrove Jacks. During the day the deeper channels in the Broadwater can still produce a variety of fish. We fished the wrecks and reefs once again for some Moses Perch, Slateys, Squire, Spangled Emperor, Dusky Flathead, Bartail Flathead, Sand Whiting, Winter Whiting, plenty of Tarwhine, Bream, and small Flounder. Best lures have been Ecogear ZX’s, Ecogear breamer vibes, and live yabbies never fail to attract attention. New moon is coming up on Monday 20 February and like January we will see some king tides again. Before then this week’s daytime neaps are small. Easy to fish but probably not great for a hot bite. Get out there early to chase Whiting on the flats and the usual mix in the Seaway and Broadwater.”
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