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Larva Lure - Change it, lock it, catch it

More big fish on the Ribbons yesterday. Capt. Luke Fallon’s KEKOA put regular angler Jason “The Hass” Hassett onto two big fish that Luke put at 900 and 1000lbs+ respectively. The big fish had at least three smaller males swimming with her for most of the fight. Jason who is fishing solo for this trip, got a real workout in the chair which he loves!  We also jumped off a smaller fish and raised another.

Fishing nearby, Capt. Haydon Bell on Kanahoee had a very similar day releasing one that he put at 950lbs and as well as another “big marlin” late in the day. Haydon’s been having some really hot fishing this year!

And Capt. Kim Andersen’s Duyfken released two at 200 and 400lbs and missed another big one before heading in on changeover.

Catch up report from Capt. James “Jimbo” Bladin on Black Magic who has been experiencing the tougher fishing among boats on the Bank.  They went wide last Thursday and had a blue on for about a minute, with at least 10 jumps ,then let go a 250lb black for angler Brett Joynes – his first marlin. They also caught another little one the next day on the Bank before finishing up Sunday with two more including a nice one that he put at 900lbs. Jimbo said that this fish also had 3 other smaller models swimming with her.

And Capt. Tim Dean hangs up his hat on the reef today for a few weeks and after a lot of big fish. He leaves Capt. Laurie Wright in charge on the Calypso with light tackle specialist Gary Carter fishing from this week.  Tim is back at the end of this month and reminds that he has some time available 5-7 days from the 20th November with Laurie.

The final report from the Port Douglas Marlin Challenge is in.  It was an anxious final day for boats all on two tags a piece on the leaderboard, but in the end, they couldn’t add to their Day 3 tallies. The final statistics were  31 hookups for 13 tags in total for the tournament. 7 marlin were estimated over 700lb.

Winning Angler: Doug Cope aboard Wild Turkey with 2 tags
Winning Female: Lisa Goodwin aboard Above Grade with 2 tags
Winning Boat: Moana with 2 tags
Winning Skipper: Daniel McCarthy aboard Moana
1st Place – Moana
2nd Place – Wild Turkey
3rd Place – Rat Bag
4th Place – Above Grade
(All on 2 tags, countback system)
5th Place – Saltaire

Pakula Lures

Reports from all over today so will start at the top and work down and then west!

The Port Douglas Marlin Challenge is over for another year, and while I don’t have a final report as yet (will add up when it is received), I can tell you that the standings didn’t change on the last day with a bit of a slower bite overall. Capt. Daniel McCarthy’s Moana III took out the Champions trophy with two tags in the four days from Capt. Daniel Bergamo’s Wild Turkey on countback.

amokuraOutside the competition, some more big fish. Capt. Brett Goetze’s Amokura only fished for 1.5hours yesterday putting the baits in with an early start and by 9:30am was hooked up to a big fish that Brett put at well over the mark (photo). It was the first marlin for a very happy angler who understandably took the rest of the day off to celebrate!

Catching up from the past few weeks after some good fishing down the bottom also on Capt. Darren “Biggles” Haydon’s Bounty Hunter. Biggles tells me that he just finished 6 days for 6 fish including a couple of nice ones at 900,750lbs as well as 4 little ones. The trip before that they caught 8 in 7 days fishing with one at 999, 800, and 4 between 500 and 600lbs! Season ’14 continuing to produce!

In the Middle yesterday there were a few more good fish around. But having to run in, I’m not sure how they ended up. On KEKOA, Capt. Luke Fallon put Neville onto a nice one (below) that he put at 750lbs before we headed in to Cooktown for the night. Update: Capt. Tim Dean’s Calypso released two at 900 and 500lbs for ex-Cool Running’s owner (and otherwise known as Jye’s dad) John Clayden!


Fraser Island

Big Fish Small Boat’s Al McGlashan is fresh back from an epic trip to Fraser Island catching a bucketload of little black marlin. Al says that most the fish were caught in water less than 15metres and that they also managed to get the world first marlin on Halcos brand new C-Gar stick bait (all on camera for Big Fish Small Boats). Photo album from his trip below. Also the Hervey Bay Game Fishing Club’s Game Fishing Classic was held over the weekend just gone and I’ve heard there were plenty more around this weekend as well. Club Captain Sarah is sending a report from the comp so stay tuned for that!

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Gold Coast

jugsReport from Matt Caelli who tells me the blues have started to show up off the Gold Coast again. They released a couple on Jugs (photo) and Matt heard of a few more around as well.

NSW Central Coast

haulinDave Tucker sent me a report to let us know that the first marlin for the season for Central Coast Game Fish Club has been caught by junior Spencer Hoye on his dad’s boat Haulin‘. Dave tells me that it is the first time in the relatively new club’s history that a junior has taken the honour.

The photo (right) is the second of the day which was the end result of a double hook up both on chair rods and the angler on this fish caught it stand up. A great effort by Reece for his first marlin to fight it standing up with a chair rod an being run around the side of the boat while they were backing up on young Spencer’s fish.

Betta Billfish Bonanza Exmouth

If you, like me, wondered how the recent Betta Billfish Bonanza (Oct 31 – 2 Nov) went in Exmouth, I have come across the report in the club newsletter which you can read here. Some more great fishing with 125 tags (112 sailfish and 13 marlin) in 3 days fishing.

Another great Australian fishery!


The fish are back on the reef. Slow and steady the bite has been building and some more really good quality fish among them!

Port Douglas Marlin Challenge Day 3: 6 hookups for 5 tags
Dragon Lady caught an estimated 750lb marlin at St. Crispins
Wild Turkey caught an estimated 110lb marlin at Opal Ridge
Above Grade caught an estimated 400lb marlin at Opal Ridge
Rat Bag caught an estimated 800lb marlin at Ribbon No 3
Hellraiser caught an estimated 850lb marlin at Ribbon No 2 (photo of Sue’s fish above)

Current Standings:
1st Moana 2 tags
2nd Wild Turkey 2 tags
3rd Rat Bag 2 tags

Outside of the comp, Capt. Tom Francis’ big blue boat Ultimate Lady headed south towards Cairns again for a few days off. But not before they ran over a few more marlin. He released a blue marlin wide of Number 3 Ribbon before hooking up to the sea monster further down the track off the Argincourts. The big fish gave them a tough 3.5 hour battle and eventually was released on the leader courtesy of a now straightened circle hook. Big fish pull hard hey Jerry! :-)

Likewise, Capt. Kim Andersen’s Duyfken found a couple of big ones that Kim put at 850 and 950+ respectively. And Capt. Dean Beach on Onsite also continued his trend of big fish on the reef with one about 800lb for angler Bill Diakos (photo).


Capt. Tim Dean’s Calypso caught another two and raised a few more. His first was a nice one that he put at 750lbs, and the second was a high action, high jumping smaller fish that I got a few snaps of from nearby.


Right up the top I hear the water’s still not great but a few more fish raised and seen and I heard that Capt. Bobby Jones Iceman got a nice one up there.


Seems like over the past day things are starting to turn around after a quiet turn. For boats fishing the Port Douglas Marlin Challenge, there was a bit more activity with 4 tags recorded for the day.  Heff reports that there were a total 9 hookups resulting in the 4 tags for Gorilla (100lbs at Escape Reef), Wild Turkey (100lbs at Opal Ridge), Moana III (300lbs at Opal Ridge) and Rat Bag (800lbs at Ribbon No 3 – photograph above.)

The current standings are:
1st – Moana III 2 tags
2nd – Saltaire (Joker) 1 tag
3rd – Gorilla 1 tag
4th – Wild Turkey 1 tag
5th – Rat Bag 1 tag

Outside the tournament, more activity for the marlin fleet as well. Up the Top, Capt. Tom Francis’ Ultimate Lady caught two including a nice one about 800lbs wide of Number 10 Ribbon and tells us the Capt. Haydon Bell on Kanahoee also released a real nice one the day before that he put at 1100lbs! Capt. Tim Richardson’s Tradition also tagged one at 300lbs for Chrissie.

In the Middle, Capt. Tim Dean’s Calypso released two at 250 and 350lbs from four bites. And on KEKOA with Capt. Luke Fallon, we also released one about 600lbs for Matt from Shellharbour GFC on the first day of our new trip (photo) and raised a couple more.


Down the track at the bottom of the Ribbons, Capt. Brett Goetze’s Amokura had a look out wide and went 2 from 4 on blues, both around the 200lb mark. Brett says they also jumped one off around 500 and got stuck into some nice yellow fin up to 50kg.

On the Bank, the big three boat 30 day extravaganza ends today after such great fishing for most of the trip, Capt. Corey Hard on Askari tells me its been a bit tough for the past four days with a bite a day only resulting in one small fish.  Corey promises to update on the trip stats after today but here’s hoping they finish it off on another high today!

Catch up reporting again from Capt. Brent James’ Mauna Kea who was back in Port yesterday after a few days out. Lochie says that they started out with a nice fish at 400lbs on the first day.  And then on the last night of the trip, around 5:30pm and put Perry (Brent’s dad) on the leader! Some screen gabs from the video footage below.


And lastly, a quick report from Michael Umback at Cape Moreton who says that when he could keep the skipping gar away from the packs of kingfish and wahoo, he went 4-2-1 on billfish catching an estimated 15kg black marlin and also pulling the hooks on a nice sail. Good to hear for the summer ahead!