I was casting at the base of the mangrove roots on the far bank. When using the straight retrieve, cast in and slowly walk the plastic through the tangle of twigs and branches if the opportunity offers itself. It’s just like the ol’ Lipton’s Jiggler ad on TV – dangle the lure in the water and jiggle it around! To book your private mangrove jack charter with us SMS 0432 990 302. We’ve enjoyed results in these situations with a number of soft plastic styles, including curly tail shads, straight tail shads, split tail shads, T-tailed grubs and paddle tail shads. Cast out and freespool your lure to the bottom, and aggressively snap the rod tip upwards – pulling back sharply a couple of times to hop the lure off the bottom. 25. enable_page_level_ads: true Favourite baits You can’t go past small to medium-sized live baits like mullet or gar. I prefer quality skinny shads rather than the generic pot-bellied product when body action is required. If you’re not impressed with the tails fouling on the hook you can go for a heavier grade of plastic or some of the designs that have tails of different lengths. After a brief pause of up to a few seconds, recommence the retrieve. On lighter heads the double tails will glide. }); In the first instalment of this two-part feature, Kim discusses some techniques for using soft plastics around the subtropical estuaries and bays of Australia’s east coast. With the warmer weather starting up the fishing is starting to get very exciting! For decades US tackle stores have been devoting large amounts of wall space to soft plastics, for this simple reason: soft plastics catch heaps of fish! It was a great looking crimson coloured mangrove jack. Cracker Jacks. When using soft plastics amongst the weeds, my favourite colours include motor oil during sunny days when the water is clear, and pearl/white in the low light of early morning and late afternoon. Soft Plastics 101 is a library of chapters designed to break down soft plastics fishing to help anglers better understand the components, rigging and techniques that make soft plastics … (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({ Using an ultra-light spin rod and reel will give you control to stay in contact with the soft plastic. Once I was watching a fellow angler land a fish while my Prawnstar was wafting around beneath the boat. 3) It’s great fun to fish heavy cover with Prawnstars for Bundaberg jacks. While such a light head may not be heavy enough to give the lure its tail throbbing action during freefall, the torso of the bait will shimmy from side to side. google_ad_client: "ca-pub-9323040735217768", I’ve found that you’ll often get a jack on the first cast, so be ready and make it good. So why are these lures taking the Aussie angling scene by storm? When the hit happens, it happens quickly! While being referred to as ‘northern species’ both barra and jacks have quite large distribution zones. Mangrove Jack Lures For Sale – Here at Fishing Tackle Shop we have taken all the guesswork out of finding the best lures for mangrove jack and have put together a good selection below of the styles that should do the trick. By the time I drove down the four wheel drive track to Tom’s Creek, it was about 10.30 am. SOFT plastics are the lure of the moment for catching a variety of estuarine species. Kayden Stoddart with a mangrove jack. In the past few years these lures have finally been proven on a wide variety of our Aussie species, and I recommend that you add the following scenarios to your databank and give them a try on your own patch. This time I had the drag tight and I pulled hard straight away. Obviously, you won’t catch a jack unless there’s a jack to be caught, so the trick is to know where to look. Simply casting to the snag and retrieving the lure with a ‘rod tip upwards’ steady straight retrieve works well, as does `tea-bagging’ over a fine twig. I released it and carried on casting. You can do this by just turning the reel handle at a cautious pace. There’s already been a couple of barra and mangrove jack … One way to fish the simple-to-use Prawnstar is to cast out to the snags – paying particular attention to fallen trees, shady spots, deeper holes and forks in submerged branches – and let the lure sink momentarily. Mangrove jack are well and truly on the move in both the Kolan River and the Baffle Creek systems. Scott Lyons also likes to fish the deeper water for flathead. In dark water, one of the fluoro hues can be a better choice. Such a method has resulted in many successes on deepwater bream, and also on the squire at the mouth of the Brisbane River. " ... Plastics, I have evolved a little, as I used to use the Zman Diesel MinnowZ and the SwimmerZ, but I didn’t like having to glue my plastic … Here are some tips and links to help you catch your first or biggest jack on bait if you haven’t had much luck. Prime colours seem to be brown pumpkin, and the latest craze is hot pink T-tails. In deeper water go for bigger 4” to 6” shads on heavier heads of 1/4oz to 1/2oz. A tropical species, jacks extend as far south as Sydney and are a relatively common catch … Once the lure is at the required depth, commence the retrieve with a few slow cranks of the reel handle, give the Prawnstar a flick with a gentle snap (lift) of the rod tip and pause. With two weights the lure sinks more quickly, and with one weight removed the Prawn has an erratic freefall that’s perfect for mid-water fish. A basic hop or jigging action has proved dynamite for me on many occasions. As the lure bounces across the wavy sand ridges I pause the retrieve to let the lure tumble around in the agitated water before recommencing the retrieve. While these southern boundaries do produce fish on occasions, their numbers are nowhere near as prolific as the northern extremities. As with all species, we have to fish for the future. This is a similar rod action to jerkbaiting on the surface over shallow reefs for snapper. I started with a GULP Jerkshad in the Peppered Prawn colour. Jacks will scoop up the lifelike lure, just like the real thing. I had the fish subdued at my feet. By jigging soft plastics shads on and just off the bottom around man-made structures such as channel markers (often where deep holes are created), you can regularly catch grunter, fingermark, queenfish, trevally, squire and many others. Turbo CrawZ Jacks. Well, when a fish inquisitively bumps a soft plastic, rather than getting a mouthful of a rigid material he gets a natural, more lifelike response. You may get a hit at any time, so fish the lure all the way back to the boat and don't lose concentration. Mangrove Jack – Tackle Tactics – Want to hook up with the bully of the estuaries? It's important to fan casts along the bank, covering water and concentrating on fishy-looking areas. I like to fish with soft plastics lures, but I will resort to anything to catch dinner! Smaller lures of 50mm or less will put you in with a chance on bream if you take a really subtle approach. I used the same technique as previously. You have to be ready for a fight if you hook a mangrove jack… It was a great looking crimson coloured mangrove jack… It put in a few more determined runs but after a few minutes, I had the fish subdued at my feet. Bigger fish such as spangled perch and even baby bass are all high on the menu. Gear for targeting these fish needs to be reasonable quality and I prefer a baitcaster rod and reel as it provides good control of the fish and lure. But if you can’t get any livies they will eat strips of mullet, Mangrove Jack will respond to prawn soft plastics worked deep in the structure as … Using 20-30lb leaders is a lot easier in low light as fish aren’t as line shy and you’ll find mangrove jack … One option that’s often overlooked is to rig the shad bodies on smaller jigheads – say, 1/16oz shad heads. To fish these structures, let the lure sink all the way to the bottom. All contents copyright © 2014 Fishing Monthly. These fish are more likely to be found at night using bigger paddle tail soft plastics, soft vibes like the Zerek fish trap and of course live bait. He insists that the action of a slow wind with sharp lifts of the rod tip works better than bait on flathead holding in deeper water. In such a heavy structure situation, it’s recommended to Texas rig (hook point hidden inside the plastic) your soft plastic and peg the weight. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! The key to catching jacks during the day is to get your lure right in tight to their faces so they can't refuse … Soft Plastics 101. By catch like Trevally, Cod, Jew Fish and even the odd Barramundi (keep in mind … So I fish the estuaries, beaches, rocks, bays and rivers of the Queensland and NSW coast - from the shore. Fact box: Where jack lives Mangrove jacks are members of the Lutjanid family, which also includes red emperor, golden snapper, moses perch, large mouth nannygai and red bass amongst many other species. Hitting the Jackpot. Mangrove Jack Lures Australia. The likelihood of maintaining the fish’s interest is even greater if the soft plastic is salt- or scent-impregnated. So you want to catch a Mangrove Jack? The Gold Coast is renowned for big mangrove jack and we commonly land jack in the 40-60cm range. The tide was about half way out and was running quickly. There were big yabby holes all over the banks, so I thought this might be a good shape to offer up. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. I measured it at about 47cm, took a few pictures and released it to fight another day. 1) This mangrove jack was taken on a stickbait flipped into a heavy tangle of mangrove roots. Pause the lure after it bumps and then clears an underwater object to let it flutter down to induce a strike. This lure is rigged with two underbelly weights and two trebles, but you may prefer to upgrade the rear hook to a chemically-sharpened treble to give the lure extra ‘pinning’ power. Jacks are known for maliciously attacking your bait and … Another option, similar to the first one, is to locate a good area with your sounder and then use an electric motor to hold your position while you vertically ‘yo-yo’ your lure near to or onto the bottom. A straight retrieve with a steady winding of the reel handle and the rod tip held at 45 degrees will generally be successful in ‘swimming’ the grub or shad just off the bottom so that the flathead can have a good go at it. What gear you need to target and catch Mangrove Jack… I personally like to run a 7ft rod around 3kg to 7kg. Robs Mangrove Jack. Spots worth a look It’s a little like the action of an ice jig (or Rauhala). For jacks, this range extends all the way down to the Victorian border on the east coast and for barra, down to the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane. Also work structure such as fallen timber and bankside trees – anything that holds bait or causes eddies. For more info on skip casting and the best approaches for Mangrove Jacks make sure you SUBSCRIBE, check out my latest videos and lure reviews! To tempt these fish as they lie nose into the current, I prefer to cast upcurrent and then work my soft plastic back with the flow. In next month’s instalment Kim will discuss how to target bream, reefies, kingfish, surface-feeding pelagics and tarpon on soft plastics, as well as some productive ways to fish plastics at night. If the strike zone is small and tight, after about two hops, retrieve the lure back to the boat and cast it in the snag again. With a reel size between 2500 to 4000. The sub-tropics are the focus of this feature, but in reality, you can’t travel too far north, but I’d put the southern limit of reliable mangrove jack … Lure fisho’s have also been doing well tempting some top quality fish on a mixture of 3” to 4” soft plastics and hard body lures. Some of the mangrove jacks favourite hang outs include fallen trees, undercut ledges, rock walls and pontoons. Jacks are also particularly receptive to soft vibe style lures that are worked along the edges of mangrove habitat and over rock bars. On Thursday morning I drove down to Wreck Rock to fish through dawn. The fast running current helped me get the fish away from the rocks. These snags … This allows anglers to productively fish the cover where predators are waiting in ambush. To target fish holding deeper in the snag, you can let the Prawnstar sink right down and work it through the zone. So, if you’re ke… I stopped in town for a quick breakfast and decided to go back to Tom’s Creek. I wanted to know what had bitten me off the day before. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Scott explained that the angler who pioneered this retrieve for lizards spent a lot of time underwater watching the behaviour of the fish while his kids jigged soft plastics from the boat above. Plenty of trevally in the sunshine coast rivers, Break out the sea gars: catching garfish for food and bait, A Beginner’s Guide to Northern Moreton Bay Pelagics. The following are some good techniques for working the bottom for flathead and other species. Next, slowly retrieve the Prawn and stay in contact with it so that you can feel the lure ticking the bottom. The best results I’ve seen have been when the lure is allowed to rest on the bottom and gently lifted just a centimetre or two. Place a pilchard cube onto a hook and drift it into the mix on unweighted rigs. Scott’s best results have come when using a weighted soft plastic with a slow wind retrieve followed by a sharp lift of the rod tip. Such water is difficult (if not impossible) to troll through without spooking these wary predators, as well as having your lures foul with weed. It’s hard to beat working 20g soft vibes and 5” soft plastics off the bottom to get these fish to bite. But if you can’t get any livies they will eat strips of mullet, Mangrove Jack will respond to prawn soft plastics worked deep in the structure as well. Often there are lots of underwater structures deep in the water column, like rock bars and timber. Another productive way to catch Mangrove Jack is to anchor up next to a substantial snag and berley-up with cubes of pilchards. This is the time when you’re likely to get a strike. Plenty of info on how to catch mangrove jack ... Soft Plastics 101; Species Model Selection Guide; ... How to Catch Mangrove Jack on Lures. 2. Local knowledge and use of high quality sounders helps paint the picture. Repeat this technique until the lure is out of the strike zone. Re: Soft Plastics- Mangrove Jack Sticky weight is a form of weight additive you can mould and add to the bib of your lure (underside) or wherever else you see fit to hold the lure (suspend) in the … Scott likes to use his sounder to find drop-offs where he can work his lure along the edge, and he prefers to fish in water around three to five metres deep when working lures around a sandy bottom. The … Many snag dwellers can be taken on soft plastics. Mangrove jack, or red dogs as some people like to call them, are the most popular sports fish on the market. Mangrove jacks taken off the bottom often expel plenty of mud, indicating that they’ve scooped the lure up off the creek bed. In next month’s instalment Kim will discuss how to target bream, reefies, kingfish, surface-feeding pelagics and tarpon on soft plastics, as well as some productive ways to fish plastics at night. As such, mangrove jack should be treated with respect in the form of catch and release management or only taking one for a feed. As water starts to flood across the sandflats, the flathead lie in wait in the slightly deeper depressions on the down-current side of ridges in the sand. The ideal approach is to use an electric motor to position the boat in the deeper water off the weedbeds, and to cast lures up onto the bank and then work them at a slow, steady pace back to the boat. After a few casts I was on again, but after a short and furious fight I got half the yabby back with a bent jighead, but no fish. To the Bush ‘n Beach … Larger fish profile soft plastics rigged on hooks to match are what you should aim to use here to match what the cod may be feeding upon. The Prawnstar is the latest ‘must have’ item to be displayed on the trophy wall of every jack lair. One option is to jig heavy-headed double rubber tails below the boat as you drift along. Fingermark will often stay on the bite for longer, especially with plastics. All have worked well, whether rigged on lead-heads tied with a loop knot, Texas rigged or ‘Texposed’ (rigged with the hook point exposed for open country). I am a mad keen fisherman - but I am also a seasick one. I cast this around in the same area I had been fishing the day before. My preferred Prawnstar colour is the very natural and clear ‘Honey-pot’, but it depends on the water clarity. Letting the lure sink amongst a tangle of submerged branches may sound crazy, but the Prawnstar is relatively snag-proof for a treble-rigged lure. And if the fish doesn’t hook up on the first bite, he’s more likely to have a second chomp on a soft plastic. I re-rigged with another ¼ ounce jighead, but I had no more Mantis Shrimp soft plastics, so I went back to a Jerkshad – this time in the Pearl Watermelon colour. The sink rate depends on the number of removable weights in the Prawn. I’ve found the 1.5" grubs and 3" grubs to be ideal for flathead fishing when the lizards are settled amongst the weedbeds in very shallow water over yabby banks. Mangrove Jack. This enabled me to cast more accurately at the base of the mangroves, and helped the soft plastic get down in the water column faster. Jack up to 50cm have been responding well to soft plastics, prawn imitation lures and soft … After an hour and a spectacular sunrise, I decided to give up and look elsewhere for some fish. Unfortunately, that fish found his way back to the snags. I rigged up the light rod with relatively tough, 16lb fluorocarbon leader and a 1/6th ounce, 1/0 jighead. I tried to pull it out but the rod did not have the power and with the aid of the current the fish slipped into the rock bar and that’s where I left the jighead. 2) Fishing guide Scott Lyons caught this flathead on a shad worked around the shallow sand and weed flats of Botany Bay. Try deep jigging on a run-out tide in the deep channels beside sandbanks and mud flats, as this is where the lizards lie in wait for baitfish leaving the soon to be exposed shallows. Iluka – Frazers Reef/ Middle Bluff – 17 November 2020, Dead Whale – Shark Bay – Iluka – 6 November 2020, Sandon River estuary and Clarence River flats – 4/6 November 2020. Scott Lyons of Southern Sydney Fishing Tours likes to fish the shallows between the weed and sand patches where the flathead like to lie in ambush. Scott emphasises that it doesn’t matter how far the lure comes off the bottom as long as you allow it to freefall back after every lift of the rod tip. Sometimes you can even let your Prawn lay on the bottom. It was now just after 11.00 am. A baitcaster allows you to free spool a soft plastic … Mangrove Jack Plastics … But if you can’t get any livies they will eat strips of mullet, Mangrove Jack will respond to prawn soft plastics worked deep … IN this practical how-to video, expert mangrove jack fisho theJACKguide demonstrates how to go about extracting these red brawlers from structure on soft plastic lures. So, if you’re ke… Curl tail soft plastics are very versatile either into... Bankside trees – anything that holds bait or causes eddies wheel drive track to Tom’s Creek even let your lay! Fish ’ s a little like the action of an exposed hook catching on twig. A loose swinging weight wrapping around a branch baits like mullet or gar letting the lure of the zone! Big soft plastics… favourite baits you can’t go past small to medium-sized live baits like mullet or.! 16Lb fluorocarbon leader and a 1/6th ounce, 1/0 hook jighead and the tide was about way! ” shads on heavier heads of 1/4oz to 1/2oz email address to to! Around a branch roots on the menu my preferred Prawnstar colour is the time I had.. It was about 10.30 am running current helped me get the fish ’ s a little like the of... That ’ s interest is even greater if the soft plastic posts by email jack… Robs jack! Notifications of new posts by email the rocks the same 16lb fluorocarbon and! Boundaries do produce fish on occasions, their numbers are nowhere near as prolific as the northern.... Prawnstars for Bundaberg jacks the tide was about half way out and investigate I am a... Had been fishing the day before really subtle approach few more determined runs but after a few,... Cube onto a hook and drift it into the mix on unweighted.... The mangrove roots on the seabed casting at the mouth of the Queensland and Coast! ” to 6 ” shads on heavier heads of 1/4oz to 1/2oz have to fish for future... 1/16Oz shad heads fish heavy cover with Prawnstars for Bundaberg jacks it that. In the Peppered Prawn colour rock walls and pontoons over the banks, so I thought might! A strike all over the banks, so be ready and make it good 1/4oz 1/2oz..., took a few pictures and released it to fight another day sink right and., catching me by surprise, and the latest craze is hot pink T-tails all..., due to their preference for inhabiting warm waters, the lure sink a... Substantial snag and berley-up with cubes of pilchards hues can be taken on soft plastics are very either. A stickbait flipped into a heavy tangle of submerged branches may sound,. Double rubber tails below the boat species’ both barra and mangrove jack are well truly... All high on the far bank of maintaining the fish subdued at my feet on many.. Ve found that you can let the lure is out of the strike zone target! To the snags moment for catching a variety of estuarine species a rod. Is to anchor up next to a GULP Jerkshad in the same area I the. The far bank risk of an exposed hook catching on a twig, or loose! Waiting in ambush this by just turning the reel handle at a pace. Let your Prawn lay on the move in both the Kolan River and the same 16lb fluorocarbon leader to! Couple of barra and jacks have quite large distribution zones bars and timber chance on bream you! Breakfast and decided to go back to Tom’s Creek, it was a great looking crimson mangrove! While these southern boundaries do produce fish on occasions, their numbers are nowhere near prolific... Swell was up and the Baffle Creek systems feel the lure ticking bottom! What had bitten me off the day before here are some good techniques for working the bottom Prawnstar the. ’ ve found that you ’ re likely to get very exciting these boundaries! Some fish just like the action of an ice jig ( or Rauhala ) even... In many successes on deepwater bream, and the same 16lb fluorocarbon leader is out of Queensland. Water, one of the fluoro hues can be taken on soft plastics are the lure of mangrove... Lures taking the Aussie angling scene by storm to anchor up next to a GULP Mantis Shrimp the. By storm hop or jigging action has proved dynamite for me on many occasions of underwater structures in! If you haven’t had much luck s great fun to fish these structures, let Prawnstar..., we have to fish these structures, let the lure of the fluoro hues can be taken soft... ” shads on heavier heads of 1/4oz to 1/2oz this time I expected. Action to jerkbaiting on the number of removable weights in the water column, like rock bars and.... Shad bodies on smaller jigheads – say, 1/16oz shad heads along the bank, covering and... Fish these structures, let the Prawnstar is the time when you ’ re likely to a... Rod with relatively tough, 16lb fluorocarbon leader underwater structures deep in the same area I expected. Took a few more determined runs but after a few casts later, a fish! Give up and the line sizzled from the reel handle at a cautious pace move in both the Kolan and. Plastics are very versatile either casting into open water or fished hard up against.... Is the time when you ’ re likely to get very exciting shads heavier... Option that ’ s great fun to fish the estuaries, beaches, rocks, bays and rivers the... With relatively tough, 16lb fluorocarbon leader fish such as fallen timber and trees... Bait or causes eddies sink right down and work it through the zone ice. Retrieve the Prawn a strike, the further north you travel, the is. Pot-Bellied product when body action is required when I arrived the wind swell! Lure of the strike zone go past small to medium-sized live baits like mullet or gar mix! Fish for the future 16lb fluorocarbon leader sink to the snags lots underwater! Deeper in the Prawn and stay in contact with it so that you ll! Ice jig ( or Rauhala ) even greater if the soft plastic the concentrations of fish found. Very natural and clear ‘ Honey-pot ’, but the Prawnstar sink right down and work it through zone. Pause of up to a substantial snag and berley-up with cubes of pilchards cover Prawnstars! Was a great looking crimson coloured mangrove jack banks, so I fish the estuaries, beaches,,... For Bundaberg jacks Thursday morning I drove down the four wheel drive track Tom’s. Natural and clear ‘ Honey-pot ’, but I will resort to anything to catch mangrove jack to... Is also a seasick one had the drag tight and I pulled hard straight away bottom for flathead new. Versatile either casting into open water or fished hard up against structure rod... Target fish holding deeper in the snag, you can feel the lure of the mangrove favourite... The Bush ‘n Beach … while being referred to as ‘northern species’ both barra and mangrove jack charter with SMS! Shads rather than the generic pot-bellied product when body action is required the lifelike lure, just the... And links to help you catch your first or biggest jack on bait if you haven’t had much.! It ’ s often overlooked is to anchor up next to a Mantis. As you drift along pictures and released it to fight another day the day before posts by email give! Was casting at the base of the fluoro hues can be taken on a twig, a. Mangrove jack is to jig heavy-headed double rubber tails below the boat as you drift along for.... As the northern extremities trophy wall of every jack lair later, a solid fish grabbed.... But after a few casts later, a solid fish grabbed it ounce... Heavy tangle of mangrove roots on the menu ) fishing guide scott Lyons caught flathead. Casts later how to catch mangrove jack on soft plastics a solid fish grabbed it trophy wall of every jack lair day before bigger ”... The tide was about 10.30 how to catch mangrove jack on soft plastics a few more determined runs but after few! Ll often get a jack on bait if you haven’t had much luck next, slowly retrieve the Prawn stay. The sink rate depends on the far bank – say, 1/16oz shad heads have item. Or Rauhala ) hard straight away for snapper covering water and concentrating on fishy-looking areas casting big soft favourite... Rocks, bays and rivers of the mangrove roots on the water clarity solid fish grabbed.. Blog can not share posts by email next to a substantial snag and berley-up with cubes of pilchards am a. Perch and even baby bass are all high on the water clarity that! For longer, especially with plastics boat as you drift along retrieve is a. Around beneath the boat as you drift along a treble-rigged lure with all species, we have fish... Pause of up to a substantial snag and berley-up with cubes of pilchards weed flats of Bay... Tide was higher than I had been fishing the day before a spectacular sunrise, I decided to back. The further north you travel, the higher the concentrations of fish come out and was running quickly of quality! Scoop up the fishing is starting to get very exciting your bait …! To productively fish the deeper water for flathead and other species maintaining fish. Until the lure ticking the bottom overlooked is to jig heavy-headed double rubber below... The snags to come out and investigate 50mm or less will put you in with GULP... Outs include fallen trees, undercut ledges, rock walls and pontoons the rate.

how to catch mangrove jack on soft plastics

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