Fishing hooks back in after cyclone
RENEGADE Fishing Charters is back to business after one of their boats was damaged during Cyclone Debbie.
Their bigger boat, based in Airlie Beach, sustained some damage in its flybridge and the electronics, meaning it was out of action for three weeks.
On its return to the water during the boat's sea trial, owner of the business Luke Griffiths dropped a few lures in the water as "it looked like there would have been a few fish around”.
"We just headed to the outer islands, probably 20 nautical miles offshore...” he said.
"I just trawled some lures for game fish... and we caught a black marlin.”
After the cyclone had passed, the fishing charter quickly got back to business in their other boat, but Mr Griffiths said, as predicted, the water after the cyclone had little clarity.
Now, a month since Tropical Cyclone Debbie, he said fishing has returned back to its best.
"The fishing over the past week has been great,” Mr Griffiths said.
"It's back to normal for us and we are seeing our usual seasonal fish for this time of year.
"The big things that changed is a lot of red throat emperor are eating, which is a typical thing after a cyclone, with a cooler water that the cyclone brings in with it.”
According to Mr Griffiths the water temperature has dropped about five degrees, which is bringing the red emperor, as well as some Spanish mackerel in schools.
During their trips out to the reef, Mr Griffiths said, they were catching some nice fish off the bottom, particularly coral trout.
He said the best way to catch these types of fish out on the reef was to use a running ball sinker rig with a pilchard bait.
If you are heading out this week, Mr Griffiths said fishing the outer islands would be good, as the tides will be smaller.
"Smaller tides and less run makes it a lot easier to fish around the islands where the current can get quite strong, so fishing around there for those red throat emperor and trout, they are definitely on the bite,” he said.