Matt Gilliland with a 51cm mangrove jack.
Matt Gilliland with a 51cm mangrove jack. Contributed

Offshore choppy, while Double Is picks up

OFFSHORE conditions have been abysmal lately with the passing of ex-tropical Cyclone Debbie, so let's hope we are in for a good run from now on.

It looks like conditions for today and Saturday will still be choppy to rough with winds south-easterly 15 to 25 knots and 1 to 1.5 metres, increasing to 1.5 to 2 metres during the afternoon or evening. Maybe try in the bays and sheltered areas for mackerel, tuna and a few reefies, otherwise you will just have to wait for better conditions later in the weekend.

Also, with next Tuesday's full moon and hopefully more settled conditions, the fish should be on the bite.

Keep in mind that April is the start of good bottom bouncing for reef species like snapper, grassy sweetlip, pearl perch, and coral trout as well as a few good cobia. The cooler and more stable conditions should be good even in closer inshore reefs, so be ready to go. Next week, with good conditions, you could expect tuna and Spanish mackerel in Laguna Bay, and Venus tusk fish from Murphy's and the blinker.

Out off Double Island Point and Wide Bay Bar there's still quality pelagic along with good tusk-fish, Maori and gold spot cod, a few mahi mahi, mackerel, cobia and amber jack giving plenty action, along with long tail tuna taking metal slugs. In the estuaries and beach scenes, Fraser Island is looking like having reasonable fishing conditions for the weekend.

Prior to the rough conditions there were bream, whiting, flathead and a few tailor off the beach at the Cape, and jew and bream overnight in the gutters.

Rainbow Beach will see conditions settle down and, with the full moon phase, try for jew, the odd tailor, bream and dart along the beaches.

Tin Can Bay and the creeks that feed into the Sandy Straits will be ideal for quality mangrove jack, quality dusky flathead, bream and the odd barra. The big rains and run of fresh water has flushed out the mud crabs and prawns while there are a few sandies in the bay.

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