GT Specialist And Social Media Personality
Ben is co-owner of the digital magazine Cast Mag and owner of the “Pop Til Ya Drop” line of hardcore lures designed for giant trevally and other tough customers. He’s written extensively on GT fishing and is considered one of the gurus of the SEQ GT scene.
Ben’s Top Tips For Brisbane Giant Trevally
- Three things are critical to catching giant trevally: Bait, structure and current.
- As with all pelagic fish, finding GT’s is all about finding bait. Unlike further north where fusiliers are not typically thought of as being fodder, around Brisbane they feed on fusiliers. Other bait species include small tunas
- Ocean currents are key, try and find areas where the current is pushing onto a reef and giant trevally are usually up-current of the structure. Currents are fickle in this part of the world and can be flowing different directions to what the maps would indicate, plus they can change hourly. Easterly currents fish really well off Brisbane.
- Look for reefs that rise up to 15 or 25m from a depth of around 50m. Start fishing well upcurrent of the structure and pressure edges. GTs are often well in front of the structure picking off the baitfish that stray away. Start casting 200-300m off the structure as you drift back onto it. Heading straight for the reefs and pressure points is likely to result in spooked fish.
- Slow right down. If you’re fishing poppers, focus on getting really big pops and then letting the lure sit for a few seconds.heap
- Weather is key. Most GT fishing happens outside of Moreton Island, so wind has to be low enough for small boats to safely operate, but glassed out days aren’t the best for fishing, especially if there is no current.
- Ben finds that night time following a full moon consistently fish well for the few days after the full. Moon rise and moon set are also good times to fish.
- Night fishing for GT’s can be very productive, especially using poppers and large stickbaits.
- Time on the water is important. Ben frequently gets to site before fist light and leaves after dark.
- If the fishing is tough, switch the lures around. If a fish hits your lure but doesn’t connect, immediately switch to a different lure and you’ll likely get the fish on a subsequent cast.
Ben’s Giant Trevally Tackle Recommendations
- Get the best gear you can afford, gear for GT is expensive but cheap gear gets destroyed fast.
- Ben likes his Shimano T-Curve “broom stick”, 7 ft popping rod coupled with a Shimano Stella 18000 reel and PE 8, or 100lb, Power Pro braid with a rod and a half length of 150-200lb fluorocarbon leader.
- When it comes to terminals you can’t go heavy enough. Hooks and split rings have to be the strongest you can possibly get.
Ben’s Best Giant Trevally Lures
- Orion 180 Bigfoot is made in France and is hard to get but has a strange action that seems to annoy GT into striking. Ben likes the fusilier colour and reckons this is a great option for getting strikes when the fish are shut down.
- Pop Til Ya Drop 100 and 150g poppers in lumo colour are Ben’s own lure brand and are a simple but very effective popper for GT’s. Get the smaller one if you’re new to GT fishing as it’s easier to use. Poppers are the best choice if the water is a bit rough or at night.
- Pop Til Ya Drop 120g stickbaits in either floating or sinking models are again simple but well made lures designed with GT’s and other tough species in mind. Go for the sinking version if the water is a little rougher, floating when conditions are calmer. Letting the stickbaits sink can help if the fishing is slow, but usually they are fished fairly close to the surface in long, slow sweeps, taking the slack line up between sweeps.