this Ansa Catch and Release Mat. Unlike other most other fish measuring mats this one is actually accurate and folds out flat. We should see some good fishing this month so I look forward to seeing some of your reports.
The Summer Surface Season is my favourite time of year for fishing in the seaway, it begins when large schools of Frogmouth Pilchards enter into the Seaway and Broadwater. These schools can turn up any time from mid September to Late November. We have already seen a few small schools entering so the bulk of the bait can't be too far away. Once these schools of bait enter they are usually followed by large schools of predators like Tailor, Bigeye Trevally, Giant Trevally and Yellowtail Kingfish. Striped, Mack and Yellowfin tuna as well as Spotted and School Mackerel are also possible around the ends of the walls and just offshore.
One species usually dominates the catches but it differs every year, In 2007 we had an exceptional run of Yellowtail Kingfish, in 2008 we had a great run of 60cm+ Bigeyes. Last year we had a run of 70cm+ GT's. Most feeding activity is centred between the walls from the tips down to the Triangle on the morning run in tides but as last year showed us you shouldn't ignore the runout tides either. Birds will show you if there is any surface feeding going on, for a refresh on what to look for reread the Birdwatching article. You should keep an eye out early morning from first light until after sunup and in the late afternoons after 5pm for any signs of bird activity.
For a look at what to look for on these early morning run in tides check out one of my oldest videos below, from the summer of 2008-2009.
Lures to use when this surface feeding is going on is the 20gram twistie, Rapala Skitter Pop 9 or my pick for the best lure this season "The Skitterbait". Cast any of these lures into a bustup and you are very likely to get hit. With the twistie, a medium to fast paced retrieve back to the boat works just fine. With the Skitter Pop a medium paced blooping retrieve works the best, the Skitterbait can be worked a number of ways, either blooping with the rod tip down, twitching with the rod tip up or a flat out skipping retrieve. Other lures will work of course but these are my top 3 for Summer Surface Feeders.
It is also worth keeping an eye on the area just outside the breakers on South Stradbroke Island as this often sees alot of surface feeding by Tailor and Dart. Inside the broadwater there is usually some surface feeding by Tailor, Bigeyes and Queenfish in the channels but these tend to be smaller fish than those that feed in the seaway itself.
It will be interesting to see what the GT's do over summer as the big schools are still hanging around the seaway, if they add into the general mix we could be in for one awesome summer of fishing.
His sighting of GT's in the canyon at night(along with the screenshot of the sounder) piqued my interest and I'll be trying to see if I can catch a few while it is dark over the next couple of months. Well done to Tim and let me know your postal address so I can send the reel, line and lures to you. Thanks to all those who posted reports this month.
I have been away for the last week so I have no end of week report to deliver, with the Flathead Classic on now with over 200 boats competing I would recommend giving it a miss this weekend anyway. I'll be back into it next week and hopefully things are picking up. I have some new techniques to test as well, I'll be giving some saltwater fly fishing a go as well as some micro jigging. Saltwater fly has always been a very effective technique in the seaway but it has been suited to more shutdown fussy fish than aggressive fast moving predators. It should be interesting to see how it goes.
Micro jigging is fairly new and I'm pretty sure noone else has used it in the seaway yet, its basically jigging a small slug rigged with an assist hook from 10-40grams in a fast vertical style. I'm pretty sure it will work well on pipeline, north wall and canyon fish as well as any other tightly schooled fish. There will be more about both techniques once I have tested them fully and figured out the best way to use them.
We are coming up to my favourite time of the year, October through December will see me on the water more than ever. Edge fishing season has begun and catches will increase from now until reaching thier peak in December, the summer surface season will begin in earnest once the bulk of the frogmouth schools show up. More on the Summer Surface Season shortly.