Big fish set to take the bait

Cliff Harvey with a monster 34.1kg Cobia caught at Moreton Island.

Finally some good weather, with the good weather comes the good fishing.

Over towards Moreton there are some large schools of bait all the way down the inside of the island. These consist mainly of yellow tailed yakka which are awesome bait for the larger pelagic fish like mackerel, cobia and yellow tail kingfish. Used either live or dead they are a strong robust bait which can be trolled without fear of them breaking apart. If you are going to use them live there are a few ways of hooking them so they stay alive. The main way is to go through the flesh just below the top fin, be careful not to hit the back bone, this way the fish can swim naturally. Another popular way is to hook them through the top jaw, this is the hardest part of the head structure, and is mainly used when trolling or drift baiting. Another less popular way is the hook through the tail, the fish cannot swim this way but does act like an injured fish and can attract any predator looking for an easy feed.

When you are on your way over to Moreton look out for schools of tuna. They are fun to catch but can be frustrating to chase as they always seem to disappear just when you are about to cast at them. When chasing a feeding school try not to drive straight into the school as they will dive down deep and pop up elsewhere. Watch the school and see which way they are travelling, get ahead of it and cut your motor and wait for them to come to you. A metal slug and a well stock spool is all you need for these especially if they are a good size. Be prepared to chase them if you get onto a good fish.

Now that the inshore waters have settled and cleaned up all the species have returned. There have been some great catches of whiting all through the system from the surf side into the passage. Bream have also been a regular catch this week with the upper reaches of Ningi Creek being a top spot for them. When fishing these waters be careful when travelling around the oyster leases. Each lease has all four corners marked clearly and can damage your props, engine legs and hulls. Not to mention the damage to the oyster farmers gear as well. If you see oyster lease markers give them a wide berth especially around the Toorbul boat ramp area. I would hate to see you being towed out by VMR due to self-inflicted damage.

Bribie Island 4×4 report

The conditions up the beach are still tricky with all the lagoons still flowing. Second lagoon is still the one causing all the problems with access only at low tide. I have heard of people actually driving into the lagoons to cross a narrower section of the flow. This is dangerous as well as being illegal. The sand base in the lagoons is a lot thinner and sit on top of soft mud, if you break through that top sand barrier you will hit the quicksand like mud and get bogged. The high tide line is the designated road so if you cross that line you are deemed to be in a restricted area and can and will be fined.