Fishing Report – March 26, 2021

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Stacey and Brendan were excited to see a school of tuna chopping up the water under the bridge while chasing baitfish. Sadly, by the time they got up close to try to catch some tuna, it was all over! There have been similar reports coming from the mouth of Ningi and the north end of White Patch.

Following the bait have been some good-sized fish. Grassy sweetlip have been taking lures and fresh bait, particularly as you get further north. Ningi Creek hadn’t been showing much of anything for a while but Poverty Creek and the 112s are holding a few good grassy sweetlip. Jaimi picked up a beauty from the hole that lies halfway between the first green marker near the Avon wreck and the red marker at the entrance to Pacific Harbour. Between Ningi Creek and the Avon, Mason and Ollie got onto some good bream, 25-37cm, using freshly caught yabbies. In the same area, Terence and Tracey also caught some big bream and sweetlip, using squid and mullet.

Flathead has been giving Ningi Creek a miss lately too, it probably will improve with this rain to flush it out and freshen it up. The better fishing for flathead has been on the rising tide, on the sandbar north of the Avon wreck and up around White Patch. Samantha and Craig caught a 90cm whopper, up that way, too big to keep but they were happy just to catch it. Prawn baits and prawn lures have yielded improving results lately. The prawn season was slow to start this season – too much good weather, not enough rain and winds coming from the wrong quarter. Over the past fortnight, prawn numbers have picked up and that has encouraged the flathead and the bream, who don’t mind chasing prawns – either the real thing or lightweighted plastics.

To use prawn-lures, cast over the water and bring them skipping back near the top. Hanging out under the Bribie end of the bridge, when the tide is just starting to run should work well, especially early mornings or evenings when the prawns are often busiest. Had another conversation with someone last week about the huge rays and shovelnose sharks caught in the Passage over the last few months, as well as lots of smaller ones. The question was raised, whether or not the balance of fish species in the Passage was being “tipped” because not enough shovelnose are being taken, in comparison to the numbers of other fish. I have no answer for this, but there are a few good recipes for them on the web.

Another catch that no-one wants is the eel. Emma says they caught “a big heap of moray eels”, on the drift past Pacific Harbour. They were big and so many that nothing else came near the bait. You can eat them too, you know! One bloke we know just whacks them on the BBQ; another friend cuts them into steaks. Out of the Passage, there have been plenty of boats chasing the mackerel and bonito around the south cardinal marker – and some good reports of catches.

Col and his mates just came back from a 4wd trip up the ocean side – they used most baits all the way up the beach, squid, pillies and freshly caught yabbies included. It wasn’t until they got up north, where they got a few nibbles but, even then, nothing else. Col said one problem was the strong NE breeze, which pulled the line back as he cast it – “a very wild ocean up there today, surfable” – but not really fishable this time.