With the perfect weather conditions we are are experiencing along the Coast at the moment, offshore and beach anglers should be blissfully happy. The oceans have had small swell, (almost as flat as a tack in close several days) and winds have been light early each day. The recent weekends have had perfect conditions allowing plenty of smaller boats out, so these anglers have had the opportunity to target estuary species and also get amongst the reefies.
Caloundra 5 Mile, Currimundi, the Gneerings and Arkwright shoal have been recommended at this time of year for producing sizable Spaniards. These fish are taking, live fresh and trolled baits. Most of the local reefs have been consistent with a wide variety of species, with coral trout off Noosa, snapper and parrot at Murphy's and large yellow tail kingfish from the Outer Gneerings to Double Island.
The rocky headlands around Noosa National park, in particular have been most consistent for beach and rock anglers. Big jew, tailor and sea bream are mostly targetted off rocky points with dawn, dusk and teh dead of night being most fruitful. If a nice stretch of beach is preferred, try for whiting and dart along Teewah beach - they've been in good numbers, even in the middle of the day. Bream, tarwhine and tailor are also showing up in good deeper gutters from Marcoola to Coolum, along Kawana and Currimundi Beaches and the NE tip of Bribie. Pillies, squid and mullet strips are generally choice of bait, though metal slugs are also working well for the tailor.
This week, Swan Boat Hire team-member, Ben Forgan gave us an insight on his favourite, tried and tested lure; the 'Z-Man 10X' Tough scented Shrimp. Ben lives, eats and breathes fishing, with flathead as his preferred target species, he assures us that you can target them right up until June or when frost starts forming on you car windscreen as now is the time they are hungriest!
"The ZMan 10X tough scented shrimp is really ten times tough; stretching from 3inches to at least two foot. Similar to the snap back plastic range, which has the same positive characteristics of flexibility and durability, as both can be stretched in a variety of ways without snapping or fraying. This allows maximum productivity in fishing and decreases the need for replacements of plastics".
Ben did a recent test this week of a new colour and then reported on his results. "Over the last three days I’ve been using the ‘new penny’ colour and have had great success on the bigger bream and good 40-60cm pan-size flatties, which are not only great fun on the light gear but tastes incredible when cooked shortly after catching."
"I was lucky enough to pick up a tailor and trevally with not a mark to be seen on the ZMan shrimp; and I’m sure we all know what sort of damage a set of tailor teeth can do. So that again proves the 10X tough and shows they really work".
"Rigging it was a lot easier than I thought, sometimes plastics are stretchy but are a lot more difficult to rig and stubborn to get on and stay onto the hook holders. They also sunk through the water column very well; even the big name plastics don’t always comply, these were surprisingly good, especially since it was the first time I had rigged it on the hook and didn’t have to change it once in a few hours of hard biting fishing".
Overall, a great plastic, with the right jig head the ZMan 10X tough Scented Shrimp will be in the bag for a long time.
Perfectly realistic: Z-Man shrimps almost blend into the natural sandy coloured background you find in any estuary. Using these to target flathead and bream is like taking a bucket and spade from a baby in a sandpit!
The Z-man shrimp was Tommy Harvey’s lure of choice for the day which produced plenty of good size flathead like this 56cm specimen. Casting the lure hard up against the bank and then hoping the lure back along the bottom proved to be the most effective technique.
Pete Batey spent the morning trolling pilchards around schools of spotty mackerel to produce a nice feed of fish. In the next few months spotty mackerel will start to show up in good numbers around coastal areas which will give anglers the opportunity to chase these great sport and table fish.