HOLY GRAIL: One of the world’s most sought-after sport fish is the bonefish and they are here in the Gladstone region if you know where to look.
HOLY GRAIL: One of the world’s most sought-after sport fish is the bonefish and they are here in the Gladstone region if you know where to look. Contributed

Abundant fishing opportunities on islands off Gladstone

BEACH fishing is great fun and often overlooked, particularly when we have such diverse reef, estuary and freshwater spots available to us in the Gladstone region.

But for those who persevere, there are plenty of great beach fishing hotspots right in our own back yard - and some great fish too.

The islands just off Gladstone itself provide abundant opportunities to land a nice dart, bream, tailor, flattie and whiting with your toes in the sand.

And if you know where to look and can quietly stalk your prey, the odd bonefish has been taken here too.

In many parts of the world and especially over in WA, bonefish are the holy grail for fly-fishers, because of their elusive nature.

Though not much chop to eat - I guess by the name they have a pretty extensive frame - but they do get on the table in parts of the Pacific and Central America.

I wouldn't know, I've never caught - or eaten one.

A few blokes I know have, and they report a great contest, finding and catching - but not much on the eating.

But I can, and do catch a few whiting in the southern parts of the region and I just love eating them - one of my favourites.

Yabbies are probably the best bait for actually attracting fish when beach fishing, but the soft bodies don't last long when attacked or knocked around in the surf.

Eugaries or pipis (depending where you are from) and sand worms are the pick for beach fishing bait, and a bit of burley (bury some old prawn heads at the water's edge) certainly gets things moving.

For mulloway, big fat green prawns are the go - not those old frozen bait bags, but nice big green kingies you'd like to eat yourself.

If you are lucky, sometimes those balls of baitfish come in close around Agnes and Deepwater and with them can come mackerel and tuna.

And if you've got big enough gear and can cast into them, it takes relaxed beach fishing up a notch or three.

Pilchards are the go or even a metal slug or spinner will get results.