Roman with a 68cm flathead caught on fresh squid.

How to catch flathead in Moreton Bay

WE had a great start to winter and the excellent fishing has continued.

We are right in the middle of our flathead season, so this article is all about how to catch flathead and a bit of by-catch such as bream and tailor.

Flathead have definitely been the standout species and I will give you a quick run-down on the gear and techniques that have worked and the areas to look for them.

Nothing has changed recently in terms of the gear we use but my standard setup is a 2-4kg graphite rod paired with a 2000-size spin reel spooled with 6lb braid and 12lb leader.

Casting into drains on low tide or high tide with paddle tails rigged on lightly weighted jig heads such as 1/8oz has been the best technique.

Another method that has worked well if looking to catch flathead is trolling small hard-body lures such as Zerek Tango Shads where the terrain allows. The terrain you’re looking for is a harder sandy bottom. So in areas such as Jumpinpin you can do a lot of trolling.

What you don’t want is really soft, muddy or weedy bottom because your lure needs to keep in contact with the bottom as much as possible, and in areas with lots of weed or mud the lure just gets clogged up and you spend too much time with the lure out of the water clearing the rubbish off it.

If you find this is happening, you need to use a different technique in that area.

If you want to keep trolling, you will need to move to another location. When trolling for flathead, go as slowly as you can and make sure your lure is hitting the bottom often.

The areas that have produced the most fish for me are around the mouth of the Logan River, Cabbage Tree Point, Jacobs Well and Jumpinpin.

I don’t go much further south than that, but flathead will probably be down in the Broadwater area as well.

While chasing flathead, you are going to come across by-catch and a lot of it will be bream and tailor. Some of these fish are going to be pretty good specimens and there’s nothing wrong with a good feed of bream or fresh tailor. They’re also heaps of fun to catch on light gear.

I’ve been in the Jumpinpin area a fair bit lately and have seen stacks of bream on the sounder, all lined up in 3-6m of water. If you’re into your bream fishing I reckon you should get to the Pin in coming months and give them a good crack.

If you would like to join me on a charter, give me a call on 0433 732 310, check out the Moreton Bay Charters Facebook page or visit www.moretonbaycharters.com.au 

Until next month, stay safe on the water.

Hayden scored his PB 63cm flathead on a trolled hard-body.
Hayden scored his PB 63cm flathead on a trolled hard-body.
Luke nabbed this solid 63cm tailor while casting for flathead with a Zerek Flat Shad.
Luke nabbed this solid 63cm tailor while casting for flathead with a Zerek Flat Shad.
Mal hooked a 66cm flathead on a Zerek Tango Shad.
Mal hooked a 66cm flathead on a Zerek Tango Shad.
Roman with a 68cm flathead caught on fresh squid.
Roman with a 68cm flathead caught on fresh squid.
This 72cm flathead trolled up on a Zerek Tango Shad.
This 72cm flathead trolled up on a Zerek Tango Shad.
You can chase all sorts of species through winter but the author advises targeting flathead over coming months.
You can chase all sorts of species through winter but the author advises targeting flathead over coming months.
Bream are a common by-catch while trolling small hard-bodied lures for flathead.
Bream are a common by-catch while trolling small hard-bodied lures for flathead.
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About Sean Conlon

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