RIGHT BAIT: Simon Cowley with his 78cm, 13½ lb fingermark caught in the harbour this week.
RIGHT BAIT: Simon Cowley with his 78cm, 13½ lb fingermark caught in the harbour this week. Contributed

Weekend fishing forecast not so hot

UNLESS you are out on the water today, by the looks of the forecast, you might've missed the opportunity for a few days.

Indications that the breeze is about to pop up tomorrow and only strengthen, along with the sea, are current till next week some time.

This week, though, has been incredible with some excellent results like for Simon Cowley who took his daughter out last weekend.

They'd been fishing for grunter and actually ran out of packets of prawns, but after some niggling from his daughter, they decided to try for some fresh bait.

The cast net he had on board though had had a run in with an old, rusted-out, abandoned crab pot, and he had to repair it before he could use it.

But once fixed, he managed to capture enough bait, a few prawns and a couple of mullet to appease his delighted four-year-old.

Fishing in about 20 metres and only having light gear he put the biggest mullet on a handline, and threw it out the back as a speculator and after about 10 minutes this rather large mullet was snaffled and up came this absolute snodger of a fingermark, measuring 78cm and weighing 13½lbs (just over 6kg).

They actually caught another one, but nowhere near as big as this one plus a couple of 50cm grunter which were dwarfed on the picture of the total catch.

These days are absolute diamonds, especially when you're out with your kids. I doubt that either Simon, or his daughter, will ever forget that day.

Well done.

Notable catches

There have been other sensational catches as well, especially on live bait and soft plastics.

These range from 38cm bream caught by Kurt Wright through to mangrove jack caught on a paddle tail, and some excellent flathead.

Crabbing throughout the whole region has been sensational as well with good numbers of big chocolate-coloured bucks finding their way into the esky.

Steven Brodie was also showing some of in the Gladstone Fishing Network Facebook page and over on the Gladstone All Things Fishing Facebook page Pete Dennis has had his huge 135cm Barra caught in the Calliope promoted to fish of the week.

It's huge. Well done Pete. You should do yourselves a favour and check out both of these pages as they have some great discussions on them.

Eve Malone from the Gladstone Fishing Network page is planning a few new social fishing events for the future and soon she could be running a nice little comp, but more on that on another day.

This weekend we have the first quarter moon phase and with it comes a smaller tidal run, and if the weather was going to be good, I'd say get out and smash those deep spots you have on your GPS.

Hooked bait

There have been a few folk, new to the region, looking for marks out around the 12 mile, and to be honest you really only have to keep an eye on your sounder to find the bait, catch some on the bait jigs, hook them on, and send it to the bottom in those spots, because where there is bait, there are predators: coral trout, nannygai, red emperor, and sweetlip, being grassy and red throat.

The whole region from 5 mile out to the shoals is littered with these little spots, and positioning your boat on top of them can be tricky, but if you are going to sit in the current, keep in the back of your mind that an incoming, or making tide, travels up the coast (north) and an outgoing, or ebbing tide travels down the coast (south), and from there you will have to work out how the wind will affect you.

If you are one of the fortunate ones with a GPS positioning electric on the bow, with an anchoring facility, then it's all very easy.

Worthwhile investing is something like this as it certainly beats pulling up anchors.

Easter is only a week away, so it's a good time to sort that boat and tackle in readiness.