Fishin’ Maggie

What’s Happening On Maggie

The news that Jetty anglers have waited for since cyclone Yasi, the Herring are back. Yes big schools of greenback herring have moved in to the Picnic Bay area. They are followed by Schools of Wolf Herring, so far but are sure to attract Queenies, Mackerel and GT.s. Easy to cast net and jig, and top bait, Herring have been nearly non-existent for too long. At the reef they put up quite a show with their synchronised jumping in complex wave patterns, making these crazy noises as they re-enter the water. It is always one of the fun things to watch while fishing the reef.

It does surprise me how many locals have never been to the reef. Fishing aside it is one of the most amazing places to park a boat. Clear Turquoise water several varieties of Turtles, abundant and active fish life, sea snakes gliding, Billfish leaping, whales breaching in season, I could go on all day. It occurs to me that some people don’t get an opportunity to go out deep (also called lack of boat). What about a boat pool, at FNF or Facebook. Those with a gap in a reef going boat, and those who want to see what the hype is about get put together. More on this idea in the future.

FNF has the info sheets on the Port Expansion Project for anyone that wants more information. Also check out townsvilleportexpansion.com.au, (pretty easy to remember). This is a complicated matter and I will give you all feedback as we get extra information. It only takes a trip to Palm group to realise how clear water can get without sediments, so projects like this need to balance with tourism needs.

Fishing Maggie

Neap tides, on Sunday, low fish activity, and it had to be on the day of the Pirtek fishing challenge. The trouble with National fishing competitions, you can’t have it right for everyone.

The Pirtek fishing challenge is about raising funds to fight Prostate Cancer, and of course having fun.  This year we had a team of 4; Matt, JB and Mikki and me.

As I said it was really tough fishing and we only had one potential prize fish uploaded, so we will find out next Saturday if we have a winner in the mystery size category. The highlight of the day was a dropped potential winning fish. JB was standing in the water at WestPoint luring for Flathead when he hooked onto a big lizard. He ran backwards out of the water, pulling the fish with him at the same time, until he got to the sand and beached it. The wily Flatty suddenly realized it was out of the water, promptly spat the lure and a mouthful of fish, and started wiggling back towards the water. JB tried to stop it,  trying unsuccessfully to flick it back up the beach. Matt saw JB’s plight, and raced over to help, diving across full length into the water with his hands out in a gallant attempt to block. (Flathead are covered in spikes and flesh cutting gill razors.)  I was too far away to help, but I cracked up laughing watching both guys fully in the water now trying to re-catch the Flathead barehanded, and flopping around. They failed and the now free Flathead took off out to sea. Matt stood up, blood dripping from his sliced hands and pulled his sodden tobacco and Iphone 7 from his pocket. It was a top but failed fish catching effort and also a moment I wished I was close enough to film.

That 2 tonne boat sitting on the ramp at Nelly Bay on the weekend is what happens if you get tired and forget to lock the winch lug. Fortunately the only damage was the sounder transducer. It happens to all of us.

Congratulations to Martin for his 77cm Barra at Horseshoe Bay on the weekend. Caught on live poddy mullet near the boat ramp, the big Barra gave good account of itself. Horseshoe Bay is the spot for Barra at the moment with big schools of Poddy Mullet attracting big predators, including large Tarpon and Queenies.

Until next time gone Fishin’…. be back at dark-thirty

Cheers Dale

Fish’n N Fuel’n

36 Mandalay Ave, Nelly Bay 4778-5126

For all of your fishing and sports hire gear. We hire and sell fishing rods, and snorkel equipment, plus sell bait, tackle, ice, spear fishing equipment, toys, party, pool toys, and ELECTRIC BIKE HIRE, SEGWAY TOURS and convenience supplies. Check out Kooler 24 hour Ice 7kg $4.   March special electric bikes $29 per day

Fishin’ Maggie

What’s Happening Around Maggie

Well that was a busy wacky weekend on Maggie. In the middle of the quiet season there were loads people piling off the ferries and into buses cars scooters and onto bikes. There was another cruise ship in the port, and a heap of the international travellers also came to check us out. (No grass skirts and bands on this tropical Isle, sorry guys.) Then Mayhem on Maggie at Arkie’s and some private parties filled the night streets with parties and drunken revellers, affected by the full moon perhaps? There were school orienteering kid groups and those very fit Adventurethon contestants in training making the rest of us look lazy.

Two carloads of European tourists heading to Tully came in and told me they had seen their first wild croc in Aussie. “Where?” I asked them. “At WestPoint off the beach” they told me excitedly” I suggested a large turtle may have been what they saw, but they were adamant it was a croc so I let them go. Who am I to spoil someone’s holiday Aussie adventure, that’s half the fun of a holiday.  (I’m sure plenty of Loch Ness visitor’s go home with stories of glimpsing Nessie).

I was thinking recently about bucket lists. Specifically fishing bucket lists. (Of course)

Of the top 50 bucket list fish that most people have, we have close access to more than half. How lucky are we anglers. Wahoo, Mahi-mahi, Tuna, Marlin, Mackerel, Barra, Mangrove Jack, Coral Trout, Big Emperor, Meter plus Queenies, Sailfish, the list goes on. (I just want you all to appreciate just how good this paradise is where you live and play.)

Talking of Tuna, Check out the ultimate Tuna challenge on You Tube in Nova Scotia. It’s called The Giant Bluefin Tuna of Nova Scotia. http://bit.ly/1ANL08 It’s a catch and release fishing experience of the biggest Tuna in the world, sustainably run by Canada, and is on my bucket list.

Less than 6 weeks of the wet season to go and the creeks are barely trickling, things are a bit Dire. It’s surprising how many visitors come to the Island and want to do the waterfall walks, which are very seasonal.

Out In The Boats

On so many of our fishing trips, we all just head straight out to the reef or the shoals. Last trip out I decided on a trip to Palm Island. Straight across the paddock on a calm day, we were there in 1 hour 20 and back in 1 hour 10. What a spectacular place to go boating and fishing, I recommend you all take a trip over sometimes, instead of heading to the reef. Smashing fishing, Monster GT’s, Barra , Spaniards, crystal clear waters, and spectacular colourful reef, Palm Group has it all. Now what else could you want in a boating trip? Uninhabited areas, untouched beaches, I was blown away by its beauty. We went to Albino rock and played with some top Reds, before popping over to Hayman Rock. Hayman rock has extended shoals and there were big Trevally, Trout and even Cobia. There were too many sharks as in most places at the moment. Palm is definitely on my frequent visit list from now on, what a blast. Next trip is Barber Island on the west side of Palm, big GT’s and Cobia.

Those big catfish are enjoying the hot waters over in the Cape weed beds, (S19°13.214′ E146°59.472′ ) and  providing hard fighting fun for School Mackerel hunters. The water is a bit warm for Mack’s, so chase Barra and Trout until the water temp drops.

Off The Shore

Big Queenies are getting caught by the anglers trying to target Barra. Live bait, hardbody lures and soft plastics, Queenies are smashing them all. WestPoint and Cockle Bay have been the Barra and Queenie hot spots on the big tides. Backup plan, when the big fish are quiet use Gulp soft plastics for a couple of Flathead for the dinner table.

Barra are still challenging, Horseshoe Bay boat ramp before dawn  and south of the stinger Nets at Horseshoe Bay are hot spots.

Until next time gone Fishin’…. be back at dark-thirty

Cheers Dale

Fish’n N Fuel’n

36 Mandalay Ave, Nelly Bay 4778-5126

For all of your fishing and sports hire gear. We hire and sell fishing rods, and snorkel equipment, plus sell bait, tackle, ice spear fishing equipment, toys, party, pool toys, and BIKE HIRE, SEGWAY TOURS and convenience supplies. Check out Kooler 24 hour Ice 7kg plus $4.  New BIKE section. Rod and reel repair available.