Bay playing host to increasing mackerel

AS I said in previous weeks, mackerel have moved into the bay and the numbers have been building.

Reports this week come from Cape Capricorn up to army country, all saying the same thing: although there are stacks of doggies and a few spotties, they appear to be on the move and might be at one spot today and another tomorrow.

In saying that, they have been more consistent down the bottom end of Keppel Bay, particularly the islands off Emu Park and Keppel Sands.

Along with the keeper fish, there are quite a number of just-undersize fish among them and a few spanish to make things interesting.

The guys at Ironpot told of spanish grabbing small doggies and pilchards and surprising anglers using the usual, small mackerel-type light gear.

It pays to know the minimum sizes of all the mackerel and don't be caught with any under.

These are the current sizes from the QPIF website today:

  • Grey or broad barred mackerel: 60cm minimum and limit of five;
  • Spanish: 75cm minimum and limit of three;
  • Queensland school mackerel or doggies: 50cm minimum and limit of 10;
  • Shark mackerel: 50cm minimum and limit of 10; and
  • Spotted mackerel: 60cm minimum and limit of five.

The bag limit is for each person.

Flasha lures are the most popular for the majority of the local fishers and can be found in all the local tackle stores.

The mackerel can be fickle, taking pillies and not much else one day, taking anything the next and only hitting shiny lures the next, so it also pays to have options.

One rod rigged with a flasha and another with a floating pilchard covers most bases.

The local spots that work for mackerel are Rosslyn Bay Harbour (outside wall and the southern point), Farnborough reef, Bangalee, Ironpot, Rita Mada, Corio Heads, Findlay's reef and take your pick of the islands off Emu Park down to Quartz and little Quartz, off Keppel Sands.

The easy way to find where they are is to take a drive up or down the coast and see where the boats are. Many of the better spots are within sight of land.

If we get the predicted northwesterly, look for spots right in close under the curtain.

There is a good supply of most estuary and reefies on the chew at the moment, so get out and enjoy the weather before it gets too hot.

Thanks again to Bluefin Sports, Rosslyn Bay Kiosk, Barra Bait and Tackle, The Causeway Lake Kiosk, Stanage Bay Marine, The Secret Spot and Kalka Bait and Tackle, the local weigh points where you can get your photo taken or drop yours in.

Contact me at ifishcq2@bigpond.com. Send emails or photos in to be eligible for the next $50 voucher.

It pays to know the minimum sizes of all the mackerel and don't be caught with any under


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