Thursday, April 26, 2012

Fraser Island Beach Fishing Autumn 2012

Many Queensland fishermen and fisherwomen love the beach fishing at Fraser Island, and this week-end  FishMax is sending a 4 man team to sample what Autumn has to offer in this fisherman's paradise.

Reports from our people on the ground are that there is good Dart under the white water along the Eastern beach and Sand Whiting in the low tide gutters so we'll be travelling slowly with our new Alvey gear on the low tide as well as trying our luck on the high tide at night and we'll be sure to let you know how the new Alvey rods and reels perform. Of course being Fraser, even at this time of year there is also a chance of landing other bigger species, so we'll be sure to let you know how it goes. We'll also be going after the rock species off the headlands between Indian Head and Waddy Point.

4kg Tailor caught on Alvey
at Fraser Is.
We're also lucky that as Ford Australia are giving us a chance to field test the new Ranger Double Cab Ute, so we'll be giving you our views on whether this is really the ideal fishing 4WD that many say it is. We're looking forward to comparing it against the Tritons, Pajeros and Land Cruisers we normally drive.

For the first time this year, our  FishMax team will be staying at Eurong Beach Resort which, with its absolute beach front position on 75-mile beach makes it the perfect base for fishing the Eastern side of Fraser Island.

Special thanks to our product sponsors, Alvey, Ford Australia and Eurong Beach Resort.

He Died in the Captains Chair

It's the wish of many a fine fisherman, to keel over while sitting in the boat or holding a rod - and it looked like maybe someone had gotten their wish, when a sponge diver near Archer Key,  Florida, USA discovered this skeleton. 

Did he die while waiting for that elusive big fish?
According to media reports, the diver  called authorities,  and a detective traveled to the site, which was about 200 metres offshore in  about a metre of water. They saw the skeletal remains, which lay nearby a long-sunken fishing boat.  The chair and “skeleton"  was retrieved, but  it was quickly established that what looked like a gruesome find was in fact a hoax. 

“It looks pretty real,” A Sheriff's Department spokesman said, “but if it was real, the skeleton would have fallen apart long before it had time to accumulate all the algae that was on it.” “We removed it from the water so we don’t get any more calls about it in the future,” he added.

Monroe County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Becky Herrin said this is probably the first time they found a fake skeleton.
A few years ago they received a report of bodies in the water, “and when we went out to the boat we found out they were mannequins, so that’s kind of similar,” she said.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Easy Way to Take Skin off a Fillet

This very short video form Shimano shows the easiest way to take skin off a fish fillet. Obviously its an advert for the Shimano filleting knife, but the tips from Paul Burt are good ones for the novice.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Trojan Hits the Spot

Whether it's on the boat, in the 4WD or around the home, every fisher needs a good tool box right along side their tacklebox. Founded in Australia way back in 1904, Trojan Tools are an excellent choice for the Aussie fisherman and Trojan has just released it's  list of Top Ten Tools for the fisherman's tool shed (read on to find out how you can WIN these great tools!):

1. Hammer it home

Whether it’s knocking in a bung, remove nails from timber deck or DIY activity like demolishing bathroom tiles or hanging a picture, no Fisherman should be without a basic hammer.

Try Trojan’s 20oz Claw Hammer with a specially designed handle for comfort, suitable for use on anything to do with woodwork, driving nails and nail removal. RRP $23.80

2. Screw loose?

Necessary for assembling most fishing gear, and essential for pulling it apart, always have screwdrivers on hand to tighten screws and keep things in place. Ensure you have a Slotted and a Phillips screwdriver and avoid using the wrong tool for the wrong job as it can damage the screw head.

Try Trojan’s range of Screwdrivers with Chrome Vanadium blades for durability, magnetised tips and comfortable grip. RRP $4.45

Or try Trojan’s 6 in 1 Screwdriver which comes with 6 different screwdriver bits and a specially designed soft grip handle for greater control and comfort. RRP $6.90

3. Measure up

It's not just fish a fisherman has to measure. Tape measures come in a variety of lengths; a standard length is fine for basic needs however a bigger project, such as building a casting deck will require a longer-length tape measure.

Try Trojan’s 8m Tape Measure, with magnetic hook and dual markings for topside or underside measurements. RRP $12.00

4. Need to get a grip?

Most commonly referred to as the holding tool, pliers can be used for cutting, twisting or gripping wire or cable and are a must have tool for every boat.

Try Trojan’s Combination Pliers which are made from Chrome Vanadium Steel for maximum strength and durability and supported by lifetime guarantee. RRP $16.98

5. A set of chisels

Chisels have a wide variety of uses, from carving wood to cutting stone or metal.

Try Trojan’s wood chisels with full tang through blade and metal striking cap. RRP $12.00

6. Utility knife

The multi-purpose cutting tool for use in a variety of trades and crafts, a utility knife can be used to mark cut lines, trim fishing line, plastic or wood materials, cut tape, cord, strapping, cardboard and more.

Try Trojan Utility Knife, featuring a “D” handle for safety and premium high quality blade for super sharpness. RRP $15.70

7. Combination square

Whether measuring angles, determining flatness or marking work surfaces, a combination square is the multi purpose tool necessary for versatile and accurate results in any project on the boat around the home.

Try Trojan’s 400mm Combination Square, with a metric and imperial graduation etched stainless steel blade for corrosion resistance and heavy duty cast zinc alloy body for strength. RRP $19.76

8. Drive bolts

An Allen Key is a tool used to drive a particular type of screw or bolt known as a ‘socket head cap screw’ which has a recessed hexagonal head. Suitable for everything from assembling furniture, changing tool accessory bits to making repairs, Allen Keys are a handy tool for the shed.

Try Trojan’s 8 Piece Allen Key made from Chrome Vanadium steel for durability. RRP $5.00

9. Adjustable wrenches

Use a wrench to tighten or loosen bolts, nuts and other fasteners. From fixing a tyre puncture, fitting bathroom plumbing or self-assembling furniture, an adjustable wrench has an abundance of uses within many working environments and the tool shed is not complete without one.

Try Trojan’s 2 in 1 Stubby Wrench, featuring a reversible jaw that allows operations as an adjustable wrench and pipe wrench. RRP $9.97

10. Tool box

Nothing is quite as frustrating as being unable to locate the tool you need for a particular job. Keep tools safe, rust free and organised with a tool box. Easy to store and even easier to locate, tools will have a home until they are ready to be used.

Try Trojan’s 475mm Tool Box with built in compartments and lift out carry tray. RRP $19.97

Whether remodelling the deck on your tinnie, servicing your outboard or repairing a leak, be sure to make space in your shed for workhorse tools from Trojan.

Visit to view Trojan’s entire hand tool range online or call FH Prager customer service on 1300 657 300 for more information.

Available from Bunnings, Trojan hand tools start from RRP $1.59

Thanks to the guys at Trojan, we've got two fantastic Trojan Tool Packs comprising a Trojan Tool Box full of tools valued at $150 to giveaway to our readers.  Simply email with the DIY job you most have to do around your house, on your boat or anywhere else and to go in the draw.

The small print: competition closes Midnight Monday May 7, 2012. Free to enter. One entry per person. Winners drawn at random. Prize not transferable of exchangable for cash. Judges decision is final. By entering this competition you agree to receive emails from Fishmax including our newsletter, but you may unsubscribe at any time. We take your privacy seriously, we will never send you SPAM or sell your email address or other personal details.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Simple Outboard Maintenance Checklist and Outboard Troubleshooting

Ensure your outboard starts every time
There is nothing worse than finally lining up some time out on the water only to find the outboard motor won't start! Except maybe finding it gets you out there, but then it doesn't get you back!

That's why we thought we'd share these two handy outboard motor tips sent in by regular readers. Old boatie from way back,  Davo, drew our attention to this handy outboard motor checklist released recently by Quicksilver Oils and BCF. Davo's hot tip: print it out and pin it do a wall in the garage.

And  PJ from Port sent us this handy-dandy troubleshooting guide  taking you through the various reasons why your outboard motor won't start. He reckons its worth laminating and keeping on the boat!

Remember, its simple maintenance like changing the outboard motor engine oil every year (every 6 months if you do more than 30 hours a year), ensuring the grease nipples are full and flushing the engine with fresh water ever time, which will make a difference between a good day or a bad one, or maybe even save your life!.

Thanks for those boys. Got a great tip for your fellow fishermen and women? Send it in to !

Friday, April 20, 2012

Can Ewen McGregor Actually Fish the Fly?

In a recent interview on BBC TV, actor Ewen McGregor told us that before the movie "Fly Fishing in the Yemen" that he had never actually tried fly fishing. So, did he learn anything on the set? Take a look and find out:

In the newly released movie Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Ewan McGregor plays Dr. Alfred Jones, a fisheries expert approached on behalf of a Yemeni sheik to bring the sport of fly-fishing to the desert. Rated 7 stars by the users of, this movie is more romantic comedy than fishing adventure or, if you prefer,  "more chick-flick, than wrist-flick". 

Catch Squid - Use Marlin for Bait!

What the? Do squid actually eat marlin? Not just any squid, but Giant Squid?!? During a recent discussion about what fresh bait is the best to catch squid, we recalled a video we had seen from Kiwi fishing presenter Matt Watson, showing what appears to be a striper marlin which has been devoured by a giant squid! Take a look and let us know what you think? Holy Shit or Bull Shit?.

Filmed as part of Watson's TV program "The Fishing Show", the clip appears to show a 250lb striped marlin  torn to bits by an Architeuthis, better known as the legendary Giant Squid.

Like a fish out of hell!

Ok, not as catchy as the original by Meatloaf, but website Izismile put together a compilation of 20 fish pics they claim look like they came straight from Hades and we have to agree with them. Take a look and tell us whether you agree that these are hell fish!:

1Hell Fish
2Hell Fish
3Hell Fish
4Hell Fish
5Hell Fish
6Hell Fish
7Hell Fish
8Hell Fish
9Hell Fish

Monday, April 16, 2012

Monster Catfish

Hungarian catches 7'4" Catfish
Not many Australians put catfish high on their list of target species, but in Europe, the USA and parts of Asia there are some very big catfish that are worth the effort!

This week we spied two great photos of European catfish that we thought we'd share.

In Hungary last week, Lajos Csendres caught a catfish that was over 7 foot long! 7 foot 4 inches (223.5 cm) to be exact! The fish, which weighed over 150 pounds (70 kg), was caught in Lake Kadarcsi, near Balmazujvaros, Hungary.

Meanwhile, in Italy,  German fishermen Stefan Seuss, Uli Schupple and Patrick Nimz on a trip to Italy, had their boat dragged over a kilometre and  half by a  99 kg (218 lb) catfish.  The catfish was caught on the Po River in northern Italy.

That's some big fish!

Germans catch 99kg catfish in Italy

Friday, April 6, 2012

Hot Tips: Jigging for Squid

The new Ikado squid jig from Rapala brings a whole new technique to squid fishing. It's all about weights and new sounds so take a look at this video from Rapala and Lee Rayner. Rayner demonstrates how to use the new Ikado squid jigs to maximum affect on southern calamari in Western Port in Victoria.

Lee's squid jigging tips are ideal for the new squid fisherman, but there's also something for the more experienced as well.

US$38,000 for Golden Snapper

According to media reports, a chinese businessman paid $US38,000 for a rare golden snapper in the port city of Chittagong, Bangladesh.

Golden Snapper caught in Bay of Bengal sold for $38,000
The Chinese businessman who was not identified but is said to come from from Hong Kong,  bought the fish from local fishmarket operator, who himself bought it from fishermen who caught it in the Bay of Bengal on Wednesday.

The fish, which weighted in at  37kg, is one of only 3 or 4 golden snapper caught each year in local waters according to local fishing experts.

Unfortunately for Aussie fishermen, the Golden Snapper they're familiar with (also called Fingermark, Large Scale Sea Perch or Red Bream) is not the same fish. Sorry guys.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Did you hear the one about...?

Did you hear the one about the Swordfish that stabbed a submarine and ended up as dinner? No, it's not a joke, but according US media, it's a true story! Apparently way back in 1967, US Naval Submarine, the Alvin, was doing work at a depth of 2,000 feet, near the Bahamas, when the crew heard a big, metallic noise, shaking the entire submarine. When brought to the surface, they found was a swordfish that had impaled itself into the outer hull of the submarine. Being a practical lot, they  they filleted and ate the swordfish for dinner. Don't believe us? Well here's the photo:

Swordfish Stabs Submarine Hull

Monday, April 2, 2012

A Seafood Paradise - by Fishmax contributor Jeff Page

We were lucky enough to spend 6 days at a small fishing village on the Kaipara Harbour which is a 2 hour drive from Auckland on the west coast of New Zealand. I can't name the village as I will be hunted down by the locals and meet an untimely demise. Kaipara Harbour has a shoreline of 800 klms which makes it a very large harbour. The snapper spawn there and then move out to sea when they are adult size. Legal size is 27 cm but our Kiwi friends only take snapper measuring 30 cm or longer as they are so plentiful (bag limit is 10 per person).

During our 6 day stint we managed to fish 4 days which was great as the weather really changes rapidly. Snapper were on the bite as soon as your line hit bottom and we were really kept busy as many were under the 30cm mark and were returned, the locals fish with 3 hooks in a paternoster style and use heavy weights (the currents are quite strong). Squid is the main bait but soft plastics work as well. You have to use a heavy jig head with the plastics (which the writer found out by landing 2 keepers from 2 casts) as you have to work hard to get the bait to the bottom.

Took a nice feed home each day but on top of this our host asked would we like to dredge for scallops. Well with only a nano second of deliberation, we said "yes". Little did we know that we didn't have to go far, our boat was within sight of our host's holiday home and after about 15 minutes of trolling we had a lovely lot of scallops. It was late in the season so they weren't as plentiful or as big as peak season time. To follow this we were then treated to going mussel and oyster gathering around the point at low tide which was very rewarding with a bag limit of 50 mussels per person and plenty of oysters (200 per person per day).

There is a lot of work shucking all this delicious seafood but when beer o'clock comes around it is all worth it. Back to the fishing, first day was a good opener with a nice feed, a couple of burn offs from sharks or rays which got the juices flowing! Second day was a better day for bigger fish with my best being a 42cm snapper and our host landing a 48cm snapper and losing a yellow tail black kingfish which managed to cut itself off around the motor leg on a surprise last run, that was the hard luck story of the trip. The other 2 days of fishing were a lot of fun with us probably throwing back 6 fish for every one kept.
Kahawai provided some action as well, they are a lot like a tailor but without the sharp teeth and are a surface feeder, great eating (we had some smoked with tea tree chips and they were delicious).

After gorging ourselves on this beautiful bounty out of the sea in NZ we had to say goodbye and head back to Oz where I am still researching where we can catch our own snapper, scallops, mussels and oysters in the one location (don't think I will have any luck in this neck of the woods).