Hervey Bay Report

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October 2023
Through winter we saw some patchy fishing for snapper but had a great run of other species including golden trevally, queenfish, giant herring, Spanish mackerel, longtail tuna, mac tuna, coral trout and various reef species.
Guests enjoyed some fantastic fishing with a great run of winter longtail tuna. Our winter longtails are of great size with almost all of them well over the magic meter mark. Many guests chose to catch and release their trophy fish with a few opting to keep one for a feed. Longtail tuna are excellent as sashimi and also perfect for a quick sear on the BBQ.
Snapper anglers had a difficult time in the early season with the fish coming late. When they finally arrived the size and class of fish was excellent. A range of lures worked with the new Rapala crush city seeing plenty of action.
Giant Herring were a highlight through winter with some cracking fish caught. These speedsters give a great aerial display and have some huge runs often dumping 100 m of braid in a single run. The Rapala crush city again was a great success on the herring.
The queenfish were also epic over winter with plenty of meter fish landed. Big queenfish can be a handful on light tackle and are often not to far away from other species like golden trevally and giant herring.
The season ahead we will see our summer action as the water heats up so does the pelagic action. Bait balls will feature on our daily trips as spotted mackerel, tuna and other species move in to round up the bait. This is great fun through the school holiday period over Christmas so don’t miss out and secure your dates.
Our famous Fraser Island flats have lived up to all expectations so far this year, treating our fly anglers from all over the world to some of the most visually spectacular sight fishing in Australian waters.

May 2023

Autumn is always a great season for us and this year was no different!

The range of fish species is at it’s peak during the autumn months and sees some great size and epic captures as bigger specimens move through. In particular big longtails are on the move and a little easier during Autumn as they crash the surface and you make no mistake identifying these keg size fish. Both lure and fly anglers enjoyed the longtail action.

Big queenfish also show plenty of aggression through Autumn as they gather to spawn in big groups. Working nomad dartwings are a favourite way of our guides to entice a bite which usually results in a huge top water explosion.

Goldens were also a highlight with fish taken on fly, jig, soft plastic and hard body lures. Big goldens can put up an epic battle when found in the shallower water.

The flats turned it on! We had some epic flats fishing through winter with longtail tuna, mac tuna, queenfish, golden trevally, tarpon and diamonds being caught on fly and conventional tackle. Longtails were a stand out with some epic sessions.

Inshore Reef Fun
On our was through the bay we often stop on the inshore reefs for a jig to see if we can grab a table fish. Although we are a sportfishing operation we still like to see guests enjoy taking a few fish home for a feed if they wish. Cod, coral trout and sweetlip are the main reef species inshore and is a good option on a windy day tucked in closer to the Island.

Permit Paradise
I recently went for a rare fish myself recently up north and indulged in some Permit fishing.

We were lucky enough to find a few and had some shots resulting in 3 landed permit I also lost a golden and broke off a 20 kg plus flats GT all in one day, there was a bit going on to say the least!. The golden I’m not bothered by but that GT will haunt me for a while and I will be itching to have another shot. Good times and very rewarding.

Winter and Spring – Seasons Ahead
We have had a good winter season so far however I expect it to be a short one as water temps still hover around 21c. This has seen less bait move closer to the island with yakka schools sitting mostly in the central bay. Snapper have been fairly elusive in daylight hours so far with a few being caught, but we should see a few more numbers in July. We have had some great queenfish sessions along with golden trevally. Tunas have been deep and will continue to be a target deeper in the water column.


What a start to 2023 with some fantastic fishing and time spent with guests. The weather has generally been very kind compared to the last few years which has been a nice change.

The school holiday period saw the younger generation get into the action. Spotted and school mackerel always provide great fun for the kids and is a perfect introduction for them into sportfishing.

Golden trevally, cobia, queenfish, longtail and mac tuna have been the main target species.

The longtail tuna arrived right on cue, and have been providing guests with some great fun and trophy size fish. The flats have produced some great longtail fishing with sight casting them in shallow water a highlight for many anglers. Mac tuna and queenfish can be found mixed in the schools with some epic top water sessions being had on the queenfish.

For the bottom species we have had a few sessions bouncing plastics on the reef landing a few nice cod, coral trout and sweetlip. Fishing lures and bouncing between spots has limited the shark predation. Fly anglers have also been enjoying the summer action on the flats.

What a season we had in 2022 for black marlin! They kept rolling in 2023 for a few weeks with a few more caught on fly and spin tackle. We had a few exciting re captures with our fish from inside Fraser Island re-tagged as far as 520 nautical miles away! The highlight for the year so far was Ray Malone’s epic black marlin sight casted on fly. What a great fish and well done Ray.

Autumn Longtail Tuna Season 2023
It’s been a epic start to the season and it’s just warming up! So far we have started to see tunas balling bait along with other species like queenfish, golden trevally, broadbar and Spanish mackerel. It’s not just tuna in Autumn! Most of our species are very active this time of year, it’s certainly my favourite time of year for variety.

Aug-Nov 2022

What a past few months it has been! We have had an exceptional run of black marlin this year with numbers consistent right throughout the season.

We have been absolutely having a ball targeting these great gamefish with guests. Targeting them on the shallow sandflats and along Fraser Island is very unique and the only place in the world such an event takes place.

Through our decades of experience targeting the black marlin, we have refined our approach and are doing well not just hooking but landing good numbers consistently.

The size of the run this year has been interesting. We have had fish from 7kg right through to 40 kg models – quite the variety. Anglers have enjoyed a range of techniques from live baiting, casting lures, fly fishing, trolling and switch baiting.

Fly anglers have had a blast with switching from teaser to fly the best method to get the ultimate hook-up. We do cast at free swimmers and catch them also but the hook up rate is in the vicinity of 1 from 10 or even less where a switch can get much higher closer to 70 % . The flashy profile fly developed by blue water fly fishing pioneer Dean Butler is the ultimate fly for billfish. We may have some availability left this season for black marlin so if you are interested please be in touch.

Other species of late have included Spanish mackerel, queenfish, mac tuna,longtail tuna, giant herring, cobia golden trevally, flathead and more. As we move into the new year we will be targeting these species more on lure , fly and jigs as we move into our tuna season.

Top water action will increase and it wont be long before we are into our longtail tuna action which is a great time of the year. Flats longtails are fun and nothing beats catching them in the shallows.

May/June/July 2022

The past few months have thrown up some challenging conditions, far from our usual winter patterns that we are used to. La Niña has certainly given us plenty of southeasterly winds which have been over 20 knots frequently, combined with the moisture in the air we have seen a huge amount of rain. This has changed up our fishing habits, making us fish closer to port in the sandy straits more frequently.

With all this being said we have seen some great fishing this winter with a great mix of fish species from offshore species like cobia, snapper and big coral trout to inshore queenfish and giant herring. This wide range of species and different styles of fishing is one thing we as guides really enjoy. On the wider reefs we enjoyed some great fishing for coral trout, snapper, mixed trevally species, scarlets, Spanish mackerel and more. We had an excellent run of Spanish mackerel through May and June which has dropped off a little now, but they are certainly there if you target them.

Mac and longtail tuna have been around and were still on the surface through May and June. We now see most tuna feeding deeper on the yakkas, which is still a fun way to target them. We often get species like snapper and golden trevally while working yakka schools.

Coral Trout are always a highlight through winter with the shark presence much lower in the cooler months landing big trophy trout is much easier. Working lures is one of my favourite techniques for trout. When fishing lures you can get away with much lighter outfits than you would with live baits as the trout come out of the reef to hit a lure, and you have the advantage straight away. We often land them on 20 and 30 lb leaders something you wouldn’t try if fishing live baits.

The Snapper season has been an interesting one with inshore turning up a good run of snapper and some of the more traditional grounds a touch slower. It has been a bit of a hit and miss season with fish being much more cooperative on the moons and almost non-existent on the neaps. Should shape up for a good late run with yakka schools in good numbers now we will certainly be targeting them again now the closed season is finished.

Inshore we have enjoyed some good fishing for queenfish, golden trevally, giant herring, cod, grunter, sweetlip, coral trout and more. Working the tides is key and again the bigger tides producing the best fishing.

Our broad bar run was short and sharp as soon as the water cleaned up they arrived and were good over a month period but have now thinned out a bit. That late season rain did change their usual migration a little with the gar also non existent due to the dirty water which they seem to follow about before they spawn.

The queenfish action has been great with a few fish on the flats also for the fly angler. I’m excited about this season on the flats its shaping up to be a good one!
Our black marlin season October – December is filling fast. We look forward to bringing you probably some of the most unique fishing in the world as we see our juvenile run start, and fish move into the shallow waters of the Fraser Coast. We are pumped and cant wait!! If you are interested in dates over the coming months get in quick and don’t miss out on the action!

April 16, 2022

March was a cracking month for the team at HBFSF with some mint weather among a few windier days.

A second round of flooding rains saw a huge influx of bait with big predatory fish in hot pursuit. Big longtails, golden trevally, spanish mackerel, queenfish, broad bar mackerel and more rounded up the bait. Targeting these fish saw anglers get some new PB’s and got to experience the thrill of targeting trophy size fish.

On the reefs we managed to find a few coral trout, sweetlip, scarlet sea perch, cod, red emperor and moses perch.
The small window of calmer days allowed us to get out a little wider and target the reef species.

Inshore we found a few nice sweetlip, cod, coral bream and the odd coral trout. The fresh water flow continued until mid march which effected the inshore reefs and bay islands of the Sandy Straits this has now cleared and is getting closer to normal salinity levels.

The flats fishing season inshore was very interrupted for us this saw the fly anglers choose to stick it out on the tuna schools and northern flats. We had some great sessions on flats longtails with both lure and fly anglers enjoying the hunt.

Thanks to all who joined us and stuck it out in the tough conditions to land those big pelagics!

We still have some dates available for the Autumn run of longtail tuna along with our winter snapper and inshore jigging season. If you are interested in any dates over the next few months, get in early to secure your charter and don’t miss out on a fantastic time of year.

We luckily got a mother shipping trip in for some regulars who had endured multiple reschedules due to weather and covid. It was great to get the guys out on the water finally! We had constant southeasterly winds which made for a nice anchorage and brought some big tunas in closer to the island. We targeted big longtails which was the main focus with everyone in the group scoring a fish over a meter – a great team effort from guides and guests.

February 25, 2022

Well what a past couple of months it has been, and a bit of a breezy start to 2022 to say the least.

Windy conditions saw us lose a fair few days with gusty southeasters, often strong wind warning strength, keeping us off the bay. As we move forward to March and Autumn we should see the weather settle down and transition into those cooler autumn conditions we love.

Over the past few months we have been focusing on the local scarlets, or large mouth nannygais, on many of our trips when conditions allow. This has seen a mix of good reef fish to go along with the scarlets including painted sweetlip, golden trevally, grass sweetlip, school and Spanish mackerel.

Focusing on using jig and soft plastics for these species can be a great way to learn the basics of lure fishing. The stand out lures of late have been the old trusty Zman StreakZ in electric chicken and 40g Nomad Buffalo Jigs.

We also managed a few nice coral trout with guests enjoying the challenges of hooking and landing these prized reef dwellers.
On the surface, we had a few mac tuna moving about along with longtail tuna. Longtail numbers are not plentiful yet but the coming weeks should see more move in.

On the windier days we focused around the Bay islands and Straits targeting small GT’s, queenfish and golden trevally. Fishing with light braid can be exciting with even small GT around 3-4 kg being a handful on light bream/ flathead tackle.

Autumn is right up there as possibly the best season for us when it comes to all out sportfishing. Tunas, golden trevally, queenfish, mackerels and more ramp up and we see some epic days on the water. With recent rains we should have a great season!

With the tuna season upon us make sure you get in early to secure your dates. We are looking forward to plenty of rod bending action with our migrating tuna run!

We experienced some flooding in January with the Mary River catchment receiving over 400mm in some areas which saw the flood level in Maryborough reach over 9 meters. With this flood water we saw a huge amount of large debris swamp the Bay area. The fresh water flowed out for a good week before we started to see it clean up.

It is now a little dirty inshore but mostly cleared up and has certainly provided some great fishing. The flood waters kick many bait species into gear and we are now seeing bait schools throughout the bay with predatory fish not far behind them. We are looking forward to a big tuna season ahead!

December 12, 2021

The past few months have seen some challenging conditions. Very unseasonal heavy rains and easterly wind flow for this time of year has made the pelagic scene tougher than it should be. Short term pain for long term gain will see the coming months fire up and will be better from the rains. We also experience much better fishing long term after big wet events, so I am looking forward to the next few seasons.

We had a good run of juvenile black marlin just before the heavy weather really kicked in. Double digit days were recorded of raised and hooked fish with a few days seeing as many as 6 landed per boat. We fished a range of techniques with fly, trolled gars, trolled live baits, bait-and-switch and trolled lures a few of the techniques used.

Guests enjoyed the thrills and spills of targeting billfish. It was great to see guests get into them and we thank everyone for coming along and giving it a go. Searching for marlin isn’t for everyone but once people get a taste of it they soon understand our obsession.

Marlin on fly was a highlight for our guides who all got among them on days off, with Kurt and Pete catching their first on fly. Although we catch plenty with guests it is rare we have rod in hand so it was great to see our guides getting amongst the action.

This year we began involvement in the NSW DPI Gamefish Tagging Program. With over 50 fish tagged and released we are hoping to see some recaptures of these beautiful marlin down the eastern coastline over the coming months.

Other species we targeted over the past few months were coral trout, cod, scarlets (nannygai), snapper, trevally, queenfish, mac and longtail tuna.

Spotted mackerel didn’t make much of an appearance through November but will ramp up during the next few weeks leading into Christmas. The bait ball action is always exciting for guests as they get to see most of the strikes with many on the rod tip. Golden trevally, tuna, black marlin, cobia and more can be seen at times rounding up the bait.

October 19, 2021

The past few months has seen some of best weather for the year.  Combine this with our winter species and we’ve had plenty of happy guests and bent rods.

Snapper season was a little different this year, with the fish spread out throughout the Bay.  That made things interesting as we caught many of our snappers in areas where we haven’t seen them for many years, along with the traditional grounds.  We targeted them on a range of techniques from soft plastics, jigs and even cut baits at times.  It was interesting to see their behaviour lean toward scavenging rather than aggressive bites this season – particularly when trevally are working the same areas.

Working lures often resulted in attracting trevally so a change of tactic is required to single out the snapper.

In the trevally schools we encountered bluespot, tealeaf, diamond, golden, goldspot, bludger and giant trevally.  The range of their species through winter certainly makes for some great fishing.

Jigs from 40-60g are dynamite through winter with the Nomad Buffalo and Cast OTD range being our go-to jigs.

On the reefs, grunters, grass sweetlip, coral trout, cod, various perches, scarlets, kingfish, cobia, mackerels and more have kept our guests busy!  We had a few excellent sessions on the reefies this winters with the coral trout being the trophy fish for many.

Inshore we had some fun targeting flathead, snapper, trevally and queenfish.  Our inshore fishing can be very productive at times and is a great option on those windy days and on our half day trips.

The school holidays were also a buzz with plenty of budding junior anglers coming on board for their first taste of sportfishing.  Hopefully we left a lasting impression and they take up fishing as a pastime. It’s always a pleasure to see the joy on their faces when they battle their first decent fish.

The next few months we move into our spring and summer season. With water temps on the way up we have seen more surface action with mac and longtail tuna starting to get around. Spotted mackerel will be next with their arrival due in November which can create some exciting fishing on the bait balls.

Our black marlin season is almost upon us, and in the coming weeks we will begin to seek out the blacks and start targeting them more frequently. 

August 5, 2021

June and July brought some tough weather, with this winter one of the worst for wet and windy conditions for some time. We did see a couple of the nice winter glassout days but they were rare.  Luckily the fishing on those days was excellent and we saw a fantastic start to our shallow water snapper season, with some big knobby’s landed.

Snapper were caught with a range of techniques but we saw that soft plastics fished around bait schools worked the best.  Keeping your approach calm and quiet is the key to getting a good session, as snappers often move on with too much commotion in the areas we fish.  Guests were treated to some new PB’s and had a ball on light tackle.

Other species we targeted through June and July were our winter reef species. Coral trout, cod, sweetlip, hussar, Moses perch and more were caught when we could got the right conditions to target them. We are hopeful we will get a few more opportunities through winter to hit the reefs.

Big longtails were also good fun with fish to 20kg landed. Guests love the battle of these brutes with some epic battles had by guests. Mac tuna also added to the tuna count with their blistering runs leaving us wonder if they grew as big as longtails would they fight harder?

Inshore we targeted species like school, broad bar mackerel, cods and smaller snapper with many days too windy to head further offshore.

Trevallies were around as usual with some big goldens falling to jigs and soft plastics. Queenfish also have been about deeper in the water column and often will come up to hit a top water lure.  We should see plenty of sportfishing action on the trevally in the months ahead.

Looking forward we should see some stable weather with more of a dry westerly flow in the wind through August. This will bring some stability to the fishing and will be a welcome change to the wet June and July we just experienced.

June 9, 2021

April saw some great conditions for our guests, with glassouts and light winds for the best part of the month.  May, on the other hand, brought some big south easterly blows and we lost a few days here and there to strong winds.  We did get out a good majority of the days and the western side of Fraser Island was the perfect back drop for some great fishing.

Longtail numbers were solid over the past few months with some quality fish up to 20 kg in the mix.  The bigger fish can be a handful but our high quality Shimano tackle with silky smooth reel drags easily get the job done.  Casting and hooking a trophy size longtail is a great challenge, with communication between angler and guide being key to landing them successfully. 

School size longtails still were abundant, with mac tuna also adding the extras on the tuna tally.

School and Spanish mackerel provided guests with a bit of fun and a tasty feed.  Spinning metals under the tuna proved successful when things were a little more difficult on the tuna with a mix of species getting caught this way.  Queenfish, golden trevally, bludger trevally and more were all caught under the tuna schools.

On the reefs we enjoyed some great fishing for species like coral trout, sweetlip, cod, moses perch, hussar and more on plastics and jigs.  Fishing the reefs is a ton of fun and winter is a great go to option if conditions allow.

Later in May we came across some great snapper bites with the blood moon late in the month producing the goods.  Big snapper are a prize capture in the Bay and with their aggressive runs in the shallow water they are a show stopper.  Quality snapper also release very well in shallow water which we often do if guests are not after a feed. It’s been a reasonable start to the season so fingers crossed it continues.

We also have started to see our run of broadbar (or grey) mackerel that we get through winter.  Broady’s are an excellent feed and provide some great entertainment when they are on a hot bite.


Our regular guests enjoyed a 3 day mothership experience.  Although the weather was playing a hard game, the fishing was still excellent with all anglers enjoying a mix of pelagic and reef species.  We even had a good feed of local mud crab.

It has been a great Autumn season with all the guides really enjoying the fishing we had on offer.  It certainly is a great time of year, but now we will start to focus on our winter species and fishing.  A big thank you to everyone that joined us throughout the Autumn season and year so far.  Covid has certainly made life challenging with many lockdowns and uncertainty with travel.  We appreciate everyone’s effort in getting up here and joining us.

Contender Offshore

We had the pleasure of hosting our good mate Ben Jones, aka the GT Buster, for our new Contender’s first offshore fishing trip.  Conditions that day were challenging to say the least – no tidal or ocean currents and the fishing was very quiet.  We still managed some great catches with the Buster recording the adventure for his YouTube channel.  See the episode here!

Winter Season

Our winter season is filling fast!  Species such as snapper, cobia, golden trevally, diamond trevally, coral trout and other reef species are active and available by jigging – a popular way to target these species through winter.  With glass-out calm conditions quite common, winter sees some of our best weather for the year. Get in early to secure your dates for our winter season!

April 21, 2021

Longtail tuna are one of the most targeted species at this time of year as we see good schools move into the bay.  Working soft plastics, stickbaits and slugs through the schools saw guests get some great fish. Fish over 20kg were landed with plenty over the magic 120cm mark. 

Queenfish are also a target species this time of year chasing down poppers and stickbaits and putting on an awesome aerial display once hooked. 

The queenies also had the odd Spanish mackerel hanging around feeding on the same bait which makes it exciting when a big spanish gets airborne after your popper. 

On the reefs, species such as golden trevally, bludger trevally, tea leaf trevally, school mackerel, nannygai, cod, coral trout and more were caught on a range of methods.

A quick jig on the reef can change the day from targeting rampaging surface fish to bottom dwellers offering great variety for guests. 

The next month will see plenty more longtail tuna come across the deck along with queenfish, mackerels, trevallys and bottom dwellers.  It’s an exciting time of year as most species are all available at the same time making for some epic days on the water.  We still have a few dates available in May so please email us to secure your booking. 

March 19, 2021

What a year we’ve had so far! The fishing was very consistent to kick off the New Year, with plenty of mac and longtail tuna showing an early appearance. The tuna have mostly been falling to slugs and soft plastics fished into the schools.

Under the tuna we have found some XL golden trevally and school mackerel as they chase after the leftovers. Sharks continue to a bit of a pest but with our techniques we manage to land plenty of good fish.

Queenfish have also been taking topwater lures, mixed in with a few spanish mackerel, providing us with some amazing surface strikes!

On the bottom, scarlets have been caught along with cod, sweetlip and slatey bream. Dropping down soft plastics like the Zman StreakZ or Zerek prawns have given us great results. Also the new Nomad Vertrex swim vibes have been working well for us in recent weeks on bottom dwellers.

Fly anglers have enjoyed the thrills of tuna on fly with mac and longtail tuna landed. On the flats, goldens have been making a rare appearance but we have had a fair few cloudy days which has seen us target pelagics more frequently on the fly.

We are now offering fresh water charters on Lake Lenthals targeting the mighty barramundi! The dam has been fishing well with most fish in the 75cm range, with a few elusive meter fish being reported. Working lures or fly in the dam is very relaxing and a great way to spend a morning if the bay is blown out.

Looking ahead, our Autumn tuna season is almost here with good numbers of tuna already busting up in the Bay. We also see some great fishing in Autumn for species like queenfish, Spanish mackerel, golden trevally, broad bar mackerel, cobia and more! For more information email us at fishing@herveybaysportfishing.com.au 

December 1, 2020

2020 certainly has had it’s challenges, but one of the brighter parts of the year has been the great spring fishing. We have seen far more east in the wind this spring, with only a few blows from the north west. This has made conditions good enough to get out most days, with only a few cancelled trips due to weather. For guests that did take a bit of a gamble on the conditions on those slightly windier days, they were rewarded with some great fishing.

The big news has been the billfish for the past few months. This season has been consistent with some great numbers of juvenile black marlin turning up. Multiple bites per day resulted in many guests enjoying their first experience of targeting small blacks. We fished for them in a few different ways throughout the season from switching live baits, casting at free swimmers, trolling gars, trolling Pakula skirted lures, and switching and sight casting with saltwater fly tackle.

Many of our billfish were caught in shallower water and were released in the shallows where they can recover nicely. The sharks were difficult at times with some crazy moments to be had…. plenty of care was taken when the fish were in the shark zone to make sure they were landed and released unharmed.

We had an epic free-swimmer on fly capture which was sensational. This black marlin was cruising the flat, and when Josh made the cast and hooked this fish, it cemented him into a small group of anglers that have caught flats free-swimming black marlins that have not been teased.

Along with billfish, we’ve had some great spotty mackerel sessions with the first run of fish being the XL size. Spotties are great fun and ball the bait up making it very visual fishing. Mac tuna and longtail tuna often joined in on the action smashing through the bait balls.

On the flats, we had a few solid longtails cruising down the flat making for some great sight casting opportunities. Along with longtails, queenfish, golden trevally, mac tuna and small black marlins were seen frequently on the flat.

On the reefs we caught a few coral trout, cod, snapper, golden and other trevallies. We didn’t spend too many days on the reefs, with much of our effort focused on the pelagic action the past few months.

The next few months will see the pelagics take the main focus with spotty mackerel hanging around until March, then the longtails arrive in big numbers as part of their annual migration.

Stickbaiting and surface lure fishing will be high on the agenda for many anglers, as species like queenfish, longtail and mac tuna and spanish mackerel start to get aggressive on the surface.

For anglers looking for a bit of reef fishing late Autumn can be a great time to target coral trout and sweetlip.

October 15, 2020

September was a cracking month for us here at Hervey Bay Fly and Sport Fishing.

Reasonable conditions throughout the month let our guides fish throughout the bay with ease.  Species like snapper were high on the agenda when tides suited and we pulled some excellent specimens on board.  Big cobia also appeared on the reefs, sometimes even taking trevally that were hooked while jigging, resulting in long fights on lighter outfits.

Trevally species are always a great target through September and it was no different this year.  Bludger, tea leaf, golden, diamond, pennant, gold spot and more were all caught through the month.

We managed a few reef sessions with coral trout, scarlets, cod, hussar, tusk fish and others taking soft plastics and jigs.  Inshore closer to port, the reefs have also been producing sweetlip and coral trout, with specimens up to 3 kg available within minutes from the ramp.

School mackerel, mac tuna and longtails have begun to move into the bay with the usual reefs holding the schoolies.  School mackerel are a great table fish and always a valuable target species between bigger trophy fish.  The mac and longtails are a little thin but good sign for the summer season ahead with spotted mackerel only a month or so away.

On the flats we had some great days targeting golden trevally with smaller fish to 4 kg appearing around in reasonable numbers.  A few queenfish are also milling on the flats, and anglers need to be ready and on point when they swim through, as long accurate casts are usually required.  On the northern flats longtails will be starting to run the beach along with queenfish and goldens.

September 2020

We have been busy here on the Fraser Coast, and are looking forward to borders opening soon so that our NSW guests can get up here and enjoy some fishing.

August can be a tricky month but the wider grounds can generally give us some great fishing if conditions allow. This August guests enjoyed targeting coral trout with some great fish coming aboard. Working soft plastics is a very effective way to target trout and they often fight much softer to when they are hooked on live baits. This allows lighter tackle and is great fun for all ages and abilities.

Along with the trout we landed some nice cod, sweetlip, various trevally species, longtails and cobia.

Snapper were a little trickier to find but we did manage some nice specimens to 82cm. Snappers came in on a range of techniques including metal jigs, soft plastics and hard body lures.

Closer to home the flats fished well for golden trevally, queenfish and small GTs. On the windier days we made our way up on the flats and had some fun with the light gear. While fishing the flats guide Peter Fry guided some guests onto a nice longtail which was cruising the edge. It’s fairly rare to see longtails on the southern flats and was an epic 3 hour battle on light tackle. Well done to the angler and Pete for staying calm and having plenty of patience that’s one epic battle.

The next month we should start seeing some mac tuna move into the bay along with longtail tuna on the surface. School mackerel will move on the reefs again and the inshore fishing scene will start to heat up.  Even small black marlin might be possible early this season with a few captures inside the Bay already this year. On the flats flathead, golden trevally, queenfish and smaller trevally will start to be more active. If you are after some spring time sportfishing be in touch and secure your spot. Email us fishing@herveybaysportfishing.com.au 

July 2020

With borders open through June and July, the curve flattened and people’s sense of adventure reignited!  We enjoyed the busiest June and July on record!  A HUGE thank you from the team at HBFS to everyone who booked with us over the past couple of months.  We hope you had a memorable trip with us!

We had a mix of weather with some glass-out days along with persistent south easterly winds which allowed us to get out almost everyday. Guests enjoyed some great winter sportfishing with golden trevally, snapper, kingfish, coral trout, cod, cobia, mackerel, longtail and mac tuna, queenfish and more coming onto the decks. 

The snapper season has been a tough one this year, but the golden trevally have made up for it as they school in good numbers on many of the reefs across the bay.  The snapper we have caught have been of good size with fish in the 80 cm size range. It’s closed season at time of writing with the snapper season open again on August 16.

A few Spanish mackerel have also been about often hanging around the trevally schools…likely picking off the odd smaller fish.  Big cobia also made an appearance as they do during winter and can be found on any of the reef along with open water as they move through the bay. Keeping an eye out while travelling for cobia on a glass out you can sometimes find them mooching on the surface this can sometimes turn into a great session on cobes.

Coral trout are a great option through winter.  The calmer weather conditions allow us to push wider with guests in search of some different species. Moses perch, cod, coral trout, scarlet, parrot and more can be found on the wide grounds making for a tasty addition to the esky. 

The next month we will see a shift in a few of our target species as we head towards spring. Snapper will still be a target but we will start to see a few more longtail tuna come across the decks. Big longtails at this time of year are generally from the 1-1.2 meter mark and put up a great fight on spin tackle. Casting stick baits, softplastics and metals usually gets the job done.

In the Sandy Straits, flathead will begin to gather to spawn and can be great fun on light tackle.  The windier days will see us head on the flats in search of a few lizards which can be an enjoyable day out for guests in calm conditions.  Other species in the straits at present are grunter, trevally, queenfish, school mackerel, jew and the odd mac tuna school.

Spring is prime time for black marlin and there is only one place on earth you can target them in shallow water….right here on Fraser Island’s west coast.

Spring sees Fly Fishing back on the agenda. The flats become more active with golden trevally, bastards etc actively feeding.  We also start to see schools of mac tuna through September before the fishing really fires up from October.  Fly fishing the flats and blue water just 3.5 hours from Brisbane is something very special and even achievable the same day for those that are time poor.

June 5, 2020

Covid-19 has provided a challenge for small business right across the globe and we are certainly no different. Now with more clarity and restrictions eased, we are back guiding again full time. Our bookings have taken off and we are almost back to pre-Covid levels, which has been very welcomed. We do still have some slots available through the next few months so please be in touch if you are after a fishing escape.

Now the fishing…

We had some great weather in May with a few breezy days also in between, overall it was a great month with some opportunities to head wide and target reef species.

The longtails were still around in good numbers through May, but have begun to feed deeper in the water column as the bigger bait has moved in. Working stick baits around the birds got some good results along with the trusty bubblegum Zman StreakZ.

Mac tuna, school and spanish mackerel were also present through May mostly hanging on the reefs working bait deep in the water column.

Trevally such as golden and tea leafs have been on the reefs throughout the bay and are always fun on light spin tackle. Along with the trevally, we came across a few schools of queenfish which can be seen milling on the surface at times. The queenies love a pencil popper with some great aerial strikes as they chase them down on the surface.

We also found some enormous cobia who provided seriously brutal battles between angler and fish. The cobia were mostly feeding on sand crabs, which made them a little tough to get a bite out of at times. But when they did, we certainly knew about it!

On the wider reefs, species such as sweetlip, coral trout, cod, moses perch and more were taking offerings such as Zerek prawns, jigs and soft plastics and were a welcome addition to the esky.

Snapper season is almost here! Just weeks away until we see a few move in. So far we have only seen smaller models with the bigger spawning fish due soon. We still have availability this season if you are after some fun targeting snapper along with our other great winter species get in touch for rates and dates.

Spring is prime time for black marlin and there is only one place on earth you can target them in shallow water….right here on Fraser Island’s west coast.We are offering special rates for Spring 2020 to fill the year out. Deposits will be 100% refundable if they have to be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. If you are after some information on our spring season, please be in touch via email.

May 7, 2020

April has certainly been a tough month for all of us. We wish everyone all the best and hope you are staying safe and healthy.
With restrictions in place, we put a stop to guiding through most of the month particularly in the early weeks. As the curve flattened and we had a clearer picture of what we could and couldn’t do, we were able to start taking one angler only as long as they followed travel restrictions and guidelines. This allowed us to guide some guests onto some great fish. It was also a rare opportunity for our guides to do some recreational fishing, which was a nice change to see them get out with a rod in their hand.
On the fishing front, we have seen some massive numbers of longtails in the bay, with some schools feeding constantly around the boat without a care in the world. This has allowed for some great fly and top water fishing opportunities, with guests enjoying some world class fishing for longtail tuna on the fly. Other species interspersed around the longtails and bait balls have been mackerel, queenfish and golden trevally.

On the reefs we enjoyed some great fishing for coral trout, cod and various trevally species. Working soft plastics can be deadly on trout and is very rewarding when you see a red fish come over the deck.
Micro jigging was also great fun with the CAST range of jigs getting some great results.
These jigs are a slow pitch jig can can be used with ease great for anglers new to jigging.
Available in 40g to 200 g there is a wide range of weights in the range.
We landed queenfish, golden trevally, cobia, gold spot trevally, mackerels, snapper, reef fish and more on the jigs and they have proved to be a winner.

Clear skies and crystal water have made the perfect combination for amazing fishing on the flats over the past month. Longtail were a welcome sight especially for fly fishers as we witnessed a lot of big longies in the shallow water. Some of the better fly sessions were enjoyed by guides, with myself having a great time sight casting to some barrels on the flats. Queenfish were also seen in reasonable numbers on the northern flats, with the local flats producing some golden trevally and bastards.

Spring 2020
Spring is prime time for black marlin and there is only one place on earth you can target them in shallow water….right here on Fraser Island’s west coast.
We are offering special rates for Spring 2020 to fill the year out.
Deposits will be 100% refundable if they have to be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. If you are after some information on our spring season, please be in touch via email fishing@herveybaysportfishing.com.au

April 10, 2020

March 2020 was a great month for fishing as it always is. We had a ball with species such as golden trevally, queenfish, mackerel, cobia, mac and longtail tuna. Some big longtails have appeared and tested anglers skills and gear.
We also had some good sessions on the flats with some big fish landed. Queenfish were also a standout providing some sport with their aerial antics.
Our longtail tuna run started on cue and we saw some good schools of fish move into the bay. Stick baits, slugs, soft plastics and poppers all worked well depending on the situation.
Some big mac tuna also provided some sport around the schools with finny scad, queenfish, golden trevally and bludger trevally feeding on the same bait ball at times.

Closer to home the inshore reefs produced some cod, coral trout and sweetlip. Targeting these species on our half day trips is always fun and guests often take home a tasty feed.
The big cloud over everyone’s head is of course COVID-19. Tourism has taken a huge hit and when things settle down, please consider booking a trip with a local tourism operator, be it fishing or other, and help them afloat. I have no doubt in the long term things will be positive again, but until people start jumping on planes our client base has shrunk significantly.

Spring is prime time for black marlin and there is only one place on earth you can target them in shallow water… right here on Fraser Island’s west coast.
We are offering special rates for Spring 2020 to fill the year out.
Deposits will be 100% refundable if they have to be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. If you are after some information on our spring season, please be in touch via email fishing@herveybaysportfishing.com.au.

March 13, 2020

Overall, we enjoyed some great conditions in February with just a few days or so of heavy rain. Other areas just to the south got a lot more rain then we did. The fresh still made its way through the river systems giving the straits and bay a much needed push of fresh water.

With the freshwater push, inshore species like queenfish, golden trevally, longtail tuna etc fired up. Working the dirty water line, we saw some longtail tuna get stuck into the bait with golden trevally deeper in the water column.

The local inshore reefs also produced well, with some good reef species on offer. Coral trout, cod, sweetlip and slatey bream fire up when we see a push of freshwater with all the extra bait being flushed out.

L: Kurt with a big cobia.
R: Richard with a longtail tuna caught on our guide Pete Fry’s new boat.

Autumn is here and so are the tuna! Longtail and mac tuna have been making their way into the bay. A range of techniques work well on our reel-burning longtails making them one of the ultimate sportfish on the East Coast of Australia. Fly, soft plastics, stick baits, poppers and more all get the bite from longtails, with topwater methods very popular with our guests.

L: Andy with a nice trout.
R: Chozz with the average size of schooling queenfish.

Along with the tuna, big schools of queenfish have also been harassing bait on the surface, often busting up in bigger schools than the tuna. The queenfish have been taking soft plastics along with top water lures.

L: There is the occasional finney scad in the mix.
R: Charles takes out catch of the month with this golden trevally on fly.

February 14, 2020

The start to 2020 was a cracker with some glass out conditions through January. There were some good numbers of golden trevally spotted, with lure and fly anglers enjoying the golden action.

The golden trevally were targeted using a range of techniques with soft plastics, micro jigs and fly all getting some great results. Big fish to well over the meter mark were caught along with some huge cobia.

On the surface queenfish, longtail tuna and mac tuna were present during January. Pesky sharks created some problems at times which can be heart breaking for anglers. We have developed a few techniques over the years to help land our catches when sharks are a problem… but some days you just have to move on. Most of the tuna responded well to 5 inch jerkshads with the Zman StreakZ always a winner.

Spotted mackerel continued their run and provided guests with a tasty feed. The way the spotties ball up the bait is very visual and is often hard to drive away from. Fly and lure anglers enjoyed the thrill of watching the spotties crunch the lure boat side. Bludger trevally, golden trevally and queenfish were also present around the spotty mackerel schools.

On the reefs a few scarlets, cod, coral trout and sweetlip were on offer taking soft plastics and jigs. Working the reefs down the straits on days when the northerlies were blowing produced some good fishing.

On the flats golden trevally, grey bastards and queenfish were fairly active. We had beautiful clean water in January as the summer had been fairly dry…until recently! The clear water gave us a rare chance to fish a few flats slightly deeper than usual and opened up some sight fishing opportunities. This resulted in some magic fly fishing, particularly on big golden trevally.

Now that the first cyclone has passed down the coast, it generally marks the start of the longtail season. Along with bigger longtails, we will see migration schools of queenfish, broad bar mackerel and mac tuna. Golden trevally will also be around and after the recent rains it should be a cracker of a season. Email fishing@herveybaysportfishing.com.au for rates and dates.

January 15, 2020

After a fairly windy spring, summer has turned it on! With the wind shifting into a more easterly flow, it has made for some great conditions on the bay.

December saw guests get into the spotted mackerel, tuna, trevally and even a few black marlin. It was a good month overall with hardly a day lost due to weather which was a great change from a breezy November period. We had some great captures including some nice longtail tuna on the flats.

Working deeper in the water column we picked up golden trevally, the odd cobia, tea leaf and bludger trevally.

Fly anglers also enjoyed a few nice sessions on the flats targeting golden trevally with fish to 7 kg caught by fly anglers. Long accurate casts were necessary but if the fly was in the right spot we got the bite.

Over the next few months, we will continue to see some good fishing and it wont be long before our longtail season kicks in. Longtail tuna from 5- 10 kg will begin to move in and start rounding up the bait. This is some of the best top water fishing you can experience, so don’t miss out! Other species to target will be queenfish, school mackerel and broad bar mackerel. These species seem to move in with the longtails. Our regular population of golden trevally will also be active as they join in feeding under the tuna schools.

The Black Marlin continued through December with a late run of fish. Gary Engel travelled from Florida USA to catch one of our shallow water marlin (see below). He was amazed by the skinny water and landscapes, and was stoked to land this great fish in the shallows.

December 18, 2019

I will go in more depth in the next fishing report, but in the meantime we have had some great fishing so far through December.
The late run of black marlin has been interesting with some nice fish being caught.
Our usual run of spotted mackerel and mac tuna has kept us busy with guests enjoying the bait balls.
Other species like golden trevally, cod, tea leaf trevally, bludger trevally,queenfish and more have also been about.

L: William with a spotted mackerel. R: Paul with a 1m+ golden trevally caught on fly.

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