Big rewards for effort

NICE CATCH: Corey McMullin with a lure-caught estuary mulloway. They like holes so target those locations.
NICE CATCH: Corey McMullin with a lure-caught estuary mulloway. They like holes so target those locations.

Now is the time of year to put the effort in and target mulloway for that fish of a lifetime.

The top spots are deep holes and just inside bar entrances. There is nothing better than live bait for big mulloway, especially at this time of year, it will always entice the bigger fish.

Bream are now dominating estuary catches for bait anglers although the average size is pretty disappointing. Most anglers reporting one in five a keeper but even then only just, but if you use good bait and fish the run in tide around sunrise and through the night, you will have a much better chance of catching fish nudging the kilo mark.

At Jumpinpin, the bream are in close off the eastern face of Crusoe Island, either side of the eastern tip of Short Island, Pig Styes and Kalinga Bank to the Pin Bar. In the Broadwater the bream along the north wall of the seaway back to the vent pipes, north wall of wave break when the tide is turning and where there is rock visible on the bottom on the western side of the main channel leading back to the Sundale Bridge.

There are a lot of tailor around in the surf and in all estuary waters. It is well worthwhile having a floating pilchard out for them if you are anchored up. Trolling estuaries is turning up quite a few chopper tailor as well as a few trevally and queenfish.

In the surf they are biting at dawn and dusk on bait but through the day it is worthwhile throwing a small chrome lure. It's a great time of year to target snapper. The shallow reefs off the Redcliffe Peninsula are one of the hot spots, especially after dark.

There has been snapper caught in the shallows around Mud and Peel islands, but small bream will drive you mad if you're targeting snapper. All artificial reefs in the bay are producing snapper as well. Offshore the main species hitting the deck is still snapper up to a few kilos.

Bottom bashing with a paternoster rig is also producing a mixed bag of reef fish including Maori cod, tuskfish and pearl perch.

Anglers trolling either live baits or lures have mostly hooked up to bonito and tuna.