People in a new relationship might be glad that the nights are getting colder.
March is usually the last of the seriously wet months in Cairns, but the monsoon has been running late this season so anything could happen. In recent years conditions have varied from picture perfect to cyclonic and everything in between. The main thing is to be ready to take advantage of any spells of good weather, when and if they occur. Mentally, put March aside as project month and that way any opportunities to wet a line will be seen as a bonus.
We now come to that time of the year where the main conversation is about the weather and not the fishing. Small weather windows a day or two at a time will allow anglers to get out and the fish should be plentiful. The rough conditions give them a rest and time for new stocks to replenish.
With good rain falling over the last month from tropical cyclone Dylan, all of the local rivers have seen an explosion of prawns and the predators have stepped it up a level.
March is the month the water starts to cool down, this in turn will start to switch our warm water species off and cold water species on. It can make fishing a little slow at times but it won’t last.
There was already a boat anchored in the bay we were heading towards so we lowered the electric and slowly worked past him.
The fishing weather window has still been closed due to the persistent strong southeasterlies we’ve had for the last 5 weeks. It has made getting out on the bay very hard. Anyone that has lucked out and had a day off on one of the rare good weather days, have done well.
The changing seasons also mean a change to the cooler weather and a change in target species.
By now everybody has started to get over the barra fever and, all going to plan, there have been plenty of jumping chrome bullets on the end of lines.
There was a great turn out for the 24th Boondooma Dam Yellowbelly Fishing Competition that was held 8-9 February 2014. A total of 658 competitors, including 145 juniors, weighed in 430 fish. A total of 84 Australian bass were also caught and released in the new catch and release section.
There are so many options within the Gladstone region, and all produce great fishing. Larger waterways in the area push up into the fresh where there are healthy populations of barra and mangrove jack to smash your bait or lure.
In my cynical moments I feel that some manufacturers aren’t so much creating lures as throwing coloured lumps of plastic at us. Fish-shaped lumps that look and behave much like the fish-shaped lumps of plastic I already have.
Team Power (Trent Power/Donovan Power) took out the first event of the 2013 BARRA Tour, the Peter Faust Evening Event. Team Power’s tournament limit of 9/10 for a total of 925cm saw them secure a comfortable victory and provide the perfect start to their 2013 ABT tournament season.
Kinchant Dam hosted the second event of the 2013 BARRA Tour, the Kinchant Night Championship. This was the first time Kinchant Dam had been used for an ABT BARRA event. Add to this that Kinchant Dam was recently used for series 10 of the Australian Fishing Championships (AFC) BARRA rounds and all anglers were excited about what lay in store.
Team EJ Todd (Craig Griffith and Trent Short) 10/10, 623cm claimed victory in the final round of the 2013 BARRA Tour at Teemburra Dam using a combination of hardbody lures and soft plastics. Fishing points and the backs of bays, the pair focused much of their attention at the mouth of Teemburra Creek.
Over the next few issues, I plan to look at the basic care and maintenance of your fishing gear, starting this month with those most important, complex and costly items of tackle: your reels.
March signifies the start of migrational movements for some species. By the end of the month you’ll see surface schools of mullet and bream, along with increased numbers of whiting and bigger tailor on the beaches. The mulloway and kingfish will be following these species that are schooling up for their spawning run.
Lake Mulwala, the ‘Murray cod Mecca’, is the only place to be if you want to give yourself a better than average chance of catching a cod at this time of year. January to May generally considered to be the best time of year to fish this region but February to April tends to produce the best numbers of cod.
A total of 90 breamin’ teams had a shot at the first BETS event for 2014 on the Hawkesbury River. Team Duo Lures/Costa Sunglasses (Gavin Joyce and Nick Geogiadis) slow rolled hard baits off the sloppier edges of Cowan Creek and found quality fish hanging close to edge willing to follow the lure out and give it a crack.
There has already been southern bluefin tuna caught on the west coast as early as late January. In fact some anglers found and caught fish not long after Christmas. Incredible, my mate and well-known west coast angler Scott Gray saw and hooked tuna as far back as November!
Over the past few years Botany Bay has undergone a number of changes. One of these was the extension of Port Botany, which has taken away many great fishing spots. In the northern section of the bay in this area you could get out of those northerly winds and drift for flathead while using baits or lures. It was a place that you could troll for tailor salmon and kingfish.
March is the best fishing month of the year. The weather is great, the ocean is warm and it is swarming with fish. There’s no better time to take the kids out fishing because you can almost guarantee a heap of fun.
Blowering Dam is the talk of the freshwater fishing scene this year thanks to the high number of 1m+ Murray cod that have been caught there since the season opened in December. If you are on social media at all you’d know that there haven’t been many days where there haven’t been pictures of massive Murray cod caught at Blowering Dam.
In recent weeks we’ve had a mass influx of shark sightings and beach closures, but from an angler’s point of view this is actually pretty exciting. You know the sharks’ presence means that masses of bait have arrived, and that also means great fishing as the sharks aren’t the only ones feasting on them.
March is one of my favourite months to get out on the water, regardless of what type of fishing I’m doing. The results are normally pretty good and the weather is easier to deal with than midsummer or midwinter. It’s simply a great time of year.
March is easily my favourite time of year to fish Port because it’s when the warm currents become more consistent, bringing a whole new host of tropical species. Longtail tuna, mackerel and inshore black marlin are just a few of the tropical fish which ride the currents down here at this time of year. Also our resident snapper, mulloway and flathead thrive in these warmer temperatures and can always provide a reliable target.
The busy time of year has been and gone with plenty of tourists here for the Christmas break. Plenty of the visitors are here to go fishing but those heading offshore have really had to pick the right days. The ocean waves haven’t been an issue, the problem has been the wind which has been blowing relentlessly. An early start is needed if you want to catch a few fish.
Another holiday season has been and gone, and this year the town didn't feel as busy as it has in years past.
Team Hastings Bream and Bass Club, consisting of local anglers Wayne Bale and Jeff Brundson, had what was needed to rise to the top of this very talented field at the Atomic Port Macquarie GTS Event in February.
The local estuaries around Merimbula are firing on all cylinders with Pambula Lake just to the south being a standout. This skinny bit of water is only a puddle but, gee, it fishes well. All species are having a chew with flathead, whiting, blackfish, bream, and tailor in great numbers.
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