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The spots for the right drop

RED ROYALTY: Matt Clarke, from Melbourne, caught this ripper Red Emperor at the reef on Thursday with Sea Fever Sport Fishing.
RED ROYALTY: Matt Clarke, from Melbourne, caught this ripper Red Emperor at the reef on Thursday with Sea Fever Sport Fishing.

Shute Harbour

PILCHARDS have been the go-to bait for coral trout and sweetlip lately.

Pilchards create their own burley trail and the smaller tides keep the burley in the area longer.

Live herring and pike have been producing the goods on the queenfish and trevally.

Rock walls

PLENTY of bluies have been seen around the rocks lately. Using lightly-weighted prawns on a heavy hand line is your best chance of landing one of these tasty fish.

Small queenfish and trevally are providing some entertainment for those casting soft plastics and metal lures.

Going to the trouble to catch live mullet or garfish will give you the best chanceof hooking into some of the barramundi that have been feeding around the rock walls at night.

ROYAL CATCH: Harper Henderson-Feldman holds a nice queenfish caught off Hayman Island last weekend.
ROYAL CATCH: Harper Henderson-Feldman holds a nice queenfish caught off Hayman Island last weekend.

Peter Faust Dam

WITH the recent rain, fish can be found up on the weed beds or patrolling the edges. Slowly working soft plastics and shallow divers around these areas should see you with a bent rod in your hands.

Keep an eye out for any water flowing into the dam. These flush fresh nutrients and food into the dam, attracting baitfish, which means the predators won't be too far away.

Rivers and creeks

THE recent downpour should get the crabs and prawns moving. Working your pots and moving them around to find the crabs is your best option.

Chasing the prawns in the feeder creeks and gutters will be a good way of getting a feed or some excellent bait.

More rain will see the majority of the fish push out towards the mouths of the rivers. Barra, salmon and the odd fingermark can be caught bait fishing, casting soft plastics, vibes and trolling 5-8m divers will get you a quality feed.

Felix Hakins posing with a nice little barrel of a mac tuna landed while on charter with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.
Felix Hakins posing with a nice little barrel of a mac tuna landed while on charter with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.

Islands

MACKEREL have tapered off recently but are still a possibility for those trolling or live baiting spots like Mackerel Bay and the back of Hayman.

The fringing reefs around the islands are your best bet for a feed of coral trout and sweetlip. Pilchards and strip baits have been producing the goods.

When using strip baits, remember size limits still apply even if fish are to be used as bait.

If the weather holds out, the tides should still allow those who prefer to fish deep the opportunity to drop squid baits down for a few red emperor and nannigai.

Ryan Fuller, Whitsunday Fishing World

Aivar Riiboon, from Estonia, posing with a nice large mouth nannigai caught with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.
Aivar Riiboon, from Estonia, posing with a nice large mouth nannigai caught with Reel Addiction Sport Fishing.

Reef

EXELELLENT conditions for fishing over the last week although a little damp with the rain that's been a about.

Small tides made for fishing the deep shoals the pick with reports of good catches of nannygai and red emperor up to eight kilograms.

Some good numbers of school size Spanish mackerel have also been caught which is a great sign for the season ahead. These fish are in the 5-10kg range and readily take small to mid-sized bibbed minnow lures and rigged garfish. The weather is not looking too good.

Ash Matthews, Sea Fever Sport Fishing

Mathew McKay with  a golden trevally.
Mathew McKay with a golden trevally.

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