FLY CATCH: Chef Callum Patience at Cape Gloucester Resort with his first ever fish on a fly rod, a tea leaf trevally landed with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.
FLY CATCH: Chef Callum Patience at Cape Gloucester Resort with his first ever fish on a fly rod, a tea leaf trevally landed with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.

Where to land a big feed of barramundi

Islands

BAD weather means not many reports have come in about how the islands have been fishing.

Inner islands South Molle, Daydream and Long Island have been fishing well for coral trout, sweetlip and tusk fish in and around the fringing reefs.

There might be enough of a break in the weather this week to head out to the outer islands. It will be worth the extra time spent to get out there.

Finding clean water out of the main current runs should produce some quality reef fish.

Larger tides will make for better pelagic action with trevally, queenfish and mackerel to be found around any bait concentrations you can find.

Hook Passage, Mackerel Bay, Dolphin Point and the Edwards groups will all worth a cast

Amie Lindsay with a tea leaf trevally also caught on a trolled hard body while on charter with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.
Amie Lindsay with a tea leaf trevally also caught on a trolled hard body while on charter with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.

Rockwalls

DUSK and dawn are peak times for targeting fish with lures off our rock walls.

Shute Harbour, Port of Airlie and the Sailing Club are all places worth a shot.

With anything from pelagic to barramundi and mangrove jacks on offer, try an array of fishing techniques from top to bottom. The key to success will be finding the baitfish these schools are chasing.

As of midday Thursday, barramundi season will be open. Fishing live baits during the run in tide will greatly increase your chances at opening up the barra account for the year.

If the wind eases off, Wilsons Beach would be another place worth trying your luck. Live baits, shallow to medium diving lures and soft plastics should get you hooked up to a leaping slab of fish in no time.

Rivers

THERE are still good numbers of crabs about our river systems and this recent rain should see it continue.

With bigger tides, pot placement will be very important so they don't get washed away and lost.

The rain will also help to stir the barramundi up and all is looking good for the season opening, midday Thursday, February 1.

Bag limits for barra are five per person, with a size limit of min 58 cm to max of 120 cm. Please don't take more than you need.

The Eriksson family's haul with A-One Fishing Charter in the Whitsundays this week.
The Eriksson family's haul with A-One Fishing Charter in the Whitsundays this week.

Fish numbers should be great for the start of the season keep in mind the bigger barra are the breeding females and are better returned to do what they do over the wet season to ensure our fishery stays well stocked. So take you pictures and get those big ladies back into the water as fast as possible.

Large tides may make fishing a bit difficult, but it will also help by concentrating fish into certain areas of the rivers.

When the tide is at its strongest, live baits and plastics fished around back eddies will find you fish sitting out of the current.

Trolling is another good option during this time and is great way to search a river and look for likely spots to try later when the tide eases.

Fish will move into these areas as the tide slows and can be targeted on baits, vibes and plastics.

Ryan Fuller, Whitsunday Fishing World

A cracking coral trout landed with A-One Fishing Charters this week.
A cracking coral trout landed with A-One Fishing Charters this week.

Dingo Beach/Hydeaway Bay

BLUSTERY conditions over the last week have limited opportunities for fishing offshore which luckily hasn't been too much of a problem as there have been piles of bait stacked up along the shores of Edgecumbe Bay.

Look for the birds and you'll find the bait.

In among the predators feeding on the bait there have been heaps of tea leaf trevally, a few big golden trevally along with some school and juvenile Spanish mackerel. They've been fairly easy to catch with anything from fresh baits to all manner of lures and flies.

The reef fishing has been patchy with only a few nice fish coming in and what we've caught we've had to work hard for.

Up in the estuaries there have been some reports of big king salmon feeding in the shallows towards the bottom of the tide. Also up in the creeks some nice crabs are being caught and the prawns have fired up with the recent rains.

Mick Underwood, Reel Addiction Sport Fishing

Scott Croft with a nice golden trevally caught on a trolled hard body.
Scott Croft with a nice golden trevally caught on a trolled hard body.

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