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Larva Lure - Change it, lock it, catch it


Someone hasn’t let on to the Sunshine Coast billies that its the start of winter with SCGFC boats once again finding good fish over the weekend in less than ideal conditions. Lachlan reports from on board Catapult that with the weather no where near favourable for fishing, 3 boats still braved it on Saturday. Misty tagged 6 sails, Reel Capture 8 (7 sails and 1 black) and Catapult had a quiet day with only the 1 micro black (pictured).

On Sunday Reel Capture and Catapult were back out with Reel Capture managing 2 sails and Catapult 1 sail.

Thanks to Lachlan for the report and photo as always!

Pakula Lures

Update on “Bendy”

In case you didn’t see yesterday’s report on our little mate “Bendy”, scroll down to the next post for a pic of this juvie black caught off Cape Bowling Green on Rose Red during the TGFC Predators comp over the weekend.  Anthony has kindly answered some questions I had with regard to how the fish acted despite his spinal limitations. Anthony said that the fish fought like a juvenile black marlin should spending most of its time in the air. The fight didn’t last too long and you could not of picked there was anything wrong with it though it did swim a little strangely when it came close to the boat.

I also heard from both Dr Julian Pepperell who has not encountered it on a marlin before though he has encountered a sail off Broome and a yellowfin with considerable bends. Sam Williams, who is also doing the fin sampling says that teleost fish (a class of ‘bony fish’ that includes virtually all the world’s important sport and commercial fishes – yes I had to look that up!) developing lordosis, kyphosis, scoliosis, and broken/cracked vertebrae, similar to human cases of scoliosis, are not uncommon and can be caused by physical injury, environmental, nutritional, infection, or genetic heritability.

So there you go. Hopefully Bendy shows up again some day as a recapture (and re-release) so we know how he goes.

More Weekend Reports

Off the Gold Coast: Glanville Heydenrych was also out Sunday on his Ocean Instinct spending most of the most of the day trying his luck for a daytime sword. Not to be though he took a few hours to fish for a blue and managed to get 1 blue and also jumped off a small stripe.

On the Sunshine Coast: Sunshine GFC’s Club Captain Brent Higgins reported Michael Lassen on Jim Bob released 3 billfish and several dollies while Paddy and the boys on Catapult released 2. Other boats including Jubilado, Double Haul & Shearwater also successful on what was a mix of sailfish and black marlin. Darren Martens continued his great junior season with a sailfish as well.

Lizard Island Black Marlin Classic

Good news for the big marlin fisherman with the Lizard Island Black Marlin Classic tournament director Bob Lowe confirming this week that the tournament will go ahead at the island this year despite the devastation caused by Cyclone Ita earlier this year.  The dates for the tournament this year are the 11th to 18th October 2014.

Entries are now open online and tournament Information and rules can also be found there.
I’ve added the tournament to the calendar as well as a “Save the Date” for next year with the tournament scheduled for 17 to 24 October in 2015.

Photo at top one I took during the classic in 2012 – Afishionado’s Tim Ballintine on a nice one.  Tag your photos on Instagram and Twitter #LIBlackmarlinclassic!


While the full weekend roundup is yet to come in, a couple of teasers from the weekend action.

Townsville GFC’s Akwa Marine Predators comp was held and we’re interested to hear how many billfish were encountered among the sport fish species. At least one with this guy encountered by the team on Rose Red fishing off Cape Bowling Green on Saturday. Anthony sent me the pic (above) and I’m waiting to hear a bit more but as you can see, he’s a bendy little guy!

Likewise SEQ enjoyed some more good weather and I heard that there were blacks encountered on the Sunshine Coast end, and more blues off the Gold Coast end. Matt Caelli sent me this pic of a blue on the leader yesterday on Jugs with Ben Colvin on the leader instead of the sticks for a change!



And it’s on on the Sunshine Coast! Report from David Granville on his maiden day billfishing in his new Cruise Craft Explorer 530 Cover Shot yesterday. David took his cousin Trevor who had never caught a billfish before, but by the end of the day he was an old pro!

Just 15 minutes after setting the gear he had his first sailfish. He then ended the day with 4 sails and three black marlin. Not a bad introduction and a great way to christen the new boat. David said they hooked nine in total for the day – one sailfish jumped on the line and broke them off and they also hooked an unknown beast which they fought for an hour and never looked like stopping. Maybe it was that swordy he saw the other day;-)

Gorgeous photos above and below. There are some more to share a little later!


But it wasn’t only David and Trevor finding the fish. Taking advantage of some beautiful conditions, Lachlan and Paul on board Catapult also recorded another great day going 4 from 5 with 2 sails and 2 blacks (photos below).

Lachlan reports that Darren and Greg Lee on Misty went 2 from 2 on a quick morning fish before work and Galaxy went 3 from 4 as well!


And last but not least, Smithy’s Fishing Charters Rob “Smithy” Smith recorded his 40th billy of the season on Wednesday. Well done!

A great year for the bills on the Sunshine Coast too!



seaprobeSouth east Queensland is still a hub of action. Among recent reports this sailfish for Chad Woodbury.  Brother Gavin of Sea Probe fishing charters took him out in his little boat off the Gold Coast yesterday morning for a Spaniard fish, and got lucky with this unexpected by-catch! (And a nice feed of mackerel for dinner too!)

Sunshine Coast GFC’s Club Captain Brent Higgins is also reports a mixed bag from the northern end. Besides Never Home‘s blue for Kourtney (post below) there have been a few blacks hooked and missed as well as success for Reel Hunter who released two sails and a micro black over the weekend.

Yesterday David Granville was out testing his new boat (name yet Dave? Update: the name is Cover Shot) and spotted a large broadbill tailing in 60m while Jay Graham spotted a striped marlin tailing near the banks while snapper fishing.

And a catch up report from Daniel Smith who reports a blue on Friday off Moreton Canyons on his boat Game Plan. Daniel says that the fish never jumped and went straight down on the take – unfortunately dying after 30 mins.  It took them another 3 hours on 37kg to bring it to the surface. It weighed 245kg with a 2.9m short and 1.36m girth.

Daniel reports that the fish was not wasted as the fillets were given to onlookers and a genetic sample passed on to Mike Bennett. They ended the day 1 from 2 missing another solid blue first up in the morning.

BMFB Housekeeping

You may have noticed a few things changing over the last few weeks on the blog.

  1. First of all the destination guides have been undergoing a revamp. The next one on the cards is Solitary Islands/Coffs Harbour courtesy of some great information from Rick O’Ferrall. Don’t forget you can contribute to the guides – tips and advice always welcome. New guides for Cairns and Gold Coast are among those in the works. Send yours in via email.
  2. The directory pages have also been undergoing a revamp. Check out the new directory pages here – you can now also view the listings by geographical location.
  3. For you on Facebook – there is now an Instagram tab on the facebook page. To share your marlin shots via Instragram, don’t forget to #blackmarlinblog
  4. Last but not least, new in the Online Shop – marlin throw pillow covers. 4 designs to choose from with or without stuffing! Photo below.