Social Media Personality And Jack Enthusiast
Jimmy is a Townsville based angler and social media personality who reckons mangrove jack fishing doesn’t always have to be all about heavy tackle and strong-arm tactics. He regularly catches quality jacks on 4lb braid and in this episode will explain how he goes about it.
Jimmy’s Top Tips For Mangrove Jack Fishing
- Stay calm when you’re fishing for mangrove jacks. It doesn’t matter whether you’re using 4lb braid or 40lb, a decent jack will be back in the snags before you can blink. It’s not so much a case of stopping them from getting into the snag as it is getting them out once they’re there. Often persevering, even free spooling will see them swim back out of the snag.
- Jimmy likes to fish surface lures over shallow snags and reckons keeping the rod high and doing enough fishing that you start to figure out what the fish is going to do.
- Learn from the lost fish and the quiet days. Those experiences are when the learning happens and you start improving your skills.
- Be confident in your gear and know what the gear (and yourself) is capable of.
- When using light lines it’s hard to set heavy hooks. Jimmy fishes his lures on 4lb braid, so he leaves on the small, light hooks that the lures are sold with and accepts that he’ll need to switch out crushed hooked frequently.
- Don’t put your fingers near a jacks mouth!
- Free standing groups of mangroves with tight root masses, plenty of current and water about 1m deep make for perfect jack habitat.
- Late spring through summer is the perfect time for mangrove jack fishing. A high tide first thing in the morning is perfect and allows the angler to skip cast surface frogs deep into cover. As the tide starts to fall it exposes the mangrove root systems, making them the prime structure. Around the bottom of the tide (midday-ish) it’s worth focusing on the many small drains in this system, where jacks are often over sand or mud and easier to target on light gear.
- Jimmy doesn’t look too much at the lunar cycles or barometric pressures but focuses on wind and tide as fish affecting factors
Jimmy’s Tackle Recommendations For Mangrove Jacks
- Jimmy likes to use his St Croix Avid 6’3″ extra fast taper 6-10lb rod coupled with a 2500 size Shimano reel. He uses Fins 4lb Windtamer braid for the mainline and finishes off with a 20lb fluorocarbon leader. He may add a 30-40lb bite tippet of about 30cm long if there are barra around.
Jimmy’s Best Mangrove Jack Lures
- 60mm Cultiva Gogo Pop is a great little lure for the Hinchinbrook area and for a small popper is very loud. It can be fished various ways, including walk the dog style. Jim doesn’t fish the lure all the way back to the boat but will cast very tight to cover and then work the lure back out with a series of small pops.
- The Zman Pop Frog rigged weedless on a 4/0 worm hook is great for getting tight into dense cover where you can’t fish other lure styles.
- A Jackal Squirrel 67 SP dives to 6-7 ft and is a silent, suspending lure. Work it once the sun is high and the curent is strong by casting ahead of the structure and working it back toweards the fish just a little faster than the water current.