Mackay Fishing Report April 2009

It looks like the weather gods have finally smiled upon us keen fisher folk of Mackay. The big highs down in the bight are slowly being replaced with continental highs that bring cool calm weather to the east coast. Typically this weather pattern does not get into full swing until June, July but is seems we are getting a little taste of what is to come.
Red Emperor

This is probably starting to sound a bit repetitive, but the fishing through April was once again, absolutely sensational. Reefari charters made frequent trips throughout April with both our boats to several different destinations around Mackay.

It appeared that red emperor was definitely on the menu this month with fish of over 10kg coming up on every trip. I can recall one particular trip where we filled the esky with nothing but good-sized emperor and coral trout.

There really was hardly anything else in there; I think we ended up with something like 8 or 9 decent reds and over 10 good trout up to about 6 kgs.

Now I know what your thinking – what an awful day what on earth are you going to do with all that foul tasting fish- well believe it or not the guys took them all home, spent two hours filleting and apparently they tasted alright – crazy I know.

A new boat record for emperor was also set at 12.7kgs.

Large mouth Nannygai are still violently on the chew as well. We have been hitting patches of them where it appeared all the fish in the school were about 8 kgs. On one particular day our guests were finding it very difficult to find the bottom as the fish were sitting up a bit and were hitting the baits as they were sinking.


Strangely enough there is also quite a few snapper to about 5kg mixed in with the nanny’s and on that particular trip I think we got 8 or so. Now it really isn’t normal to be catching snapper this early but I didn’t hear anybody complaining about it. Maybe we are in for a big snapper season this year.

Aside from that, the coral trout have been going off with most trips averaging 8 or so good fish. At the moment it seems if you have access to a live butterfly bream then you can almost immediately drop him back down and swap it for a nice big bar cheek.

Live baiting for trout has got to be one of my favorite forms of fishing.

You drop your bait to the bottom, screw the drag up as tight as it will go, wait and sometimes wait some more.

You can feel the colour of you baits undies change as he tries hopelessly to get away from the large orange toothy critter that has appeared below him and when he finally gets hit, by Christ do you know about it.

Now wind like a madman to keep him out of the reef and if all goes well you end up with the most prized table fish you will find on the GBR ($40 odd a kg last time I checked).

Well if that sound like fun give us a call and we can organize a great days fishing for you. Remember we can do up to 3 days on the reef or we can just take you out for the day, whatever suits.