HOOK IN: It's tuna time on the Sunshine Coast.
HOOK IN: It's tuna time on the Sunshine Coast. CONTRIBUTED

Schools of tuna chasing baitfish

THE past few weeks have really turned it on, with stunning weather conditions and exceptional fishing.

The big drawcard at the moment is the hectares of tuna schools terrorising the masses of bait along our coastline.

When it comes to tuna fishing, a few key pieces of information can really make all the difference between a successful day and a frustrating day on the water.

A very important piece of the puzzle is finding out the bait source they are feeding on - tuna, especially, as once they get locked on to a particular bait, it will be hard to tempt them with another offering. Bait will vary depending on the time of year and the currents.

One day they might be feeding on larger baits like herring and pilchards, then on other days they could be feeding on rain bait which is a very small bait fish, often seen shimmering on the water's surface.

So an angler must have a variety of different lure presentations in the arsenal to cover all bases.

A stick bait is the perfect lure presentation when the tuna are feeding on larger baits, making for some unreal areal takes.

Popular lures are the Daiwa Dorado slider and the Zerek Zappelin. Downsizing presentations, a soft plastic about 5" is a perfect medium-size lure and would hands-down have to be the most popular, with the Zman 5" StreakZ in bubble gum being hard to beat when matched with a TT HeadlockZ 1/2 to 1oz 5/0 jig head.

For the smallest presentation when trying to match the rain bait, metal slugs are the best option as they are obviously smaller in profile and more compact, making them less wind-resistant for easier and longer casts.

The Halco Twisty and Sea rock ultra-flash in the 10-40 gram range often tempt the most finicky of fish.

Wind is another very important factor that must be considered as tuna will feed into the wind.

So by knowing this, you can adjust your run and position the boat up-wind of the school, having them feed towards you rather than running in behind them and spooking them.

Log on to www.fishingnoosa.com.au for up to date bar and fishing reports.

Drop into Davo's Tackle World in Noosa or Davo's Northshore Bait & Tackle at Marcoola to find out where the fish are biting.