Mastering Shallow Water Snapper Fishing: Tips and Tricks from the Pros

They say the early bird catches the worm, but this time of year, fishermen are after something a bit more exciting – snapper!

During the cooler months, these feisty fish venture into the shallower waters to spawn, making it the perfect time for anglers to try their luck…just make sure it’s before or after the closed season.

Scotty Hillier and Ben Glass from SCF headed to 14m waters off Caloundra on the Sunshine Coast to share their tips.

The technique? Wafting – an artful way of enticing snapper with floating plastics.

Ben says “We’re making long casts to the way we’re drifting. And we’re just bringing that slackline in as we drift towards it…Snapper will see it, they’ll come up and crash it.”

As any seasoned angler will tell you, having the right gear is essential. The boys used 5-7 inch Z-Man soft plastics paired with carefully selected jig-head weights to achieve that perfect sink. These lures mimic baitfish, and trust us, snapper can’t resist them. The trick with snapper is to let your plastics do the work. When it comes to line, opt for 20-30 pound braid and leader, ensuring you’re well-prepared for whatever the snapper throw your way.

This species packs a punch, often mistaken for their more robust relatives like tuna. Ben emphasizes the importance of catch and release, especially for these aggressive feeders during this time.

The minimum size for snapper in QLD is 35cm and there are limits on how many you can keep, depending on their size and the number of people onboard.

Understanding the limits is crucial for responsible angling. Ben stresses that you should only take what you need, ensuring the health and sustainability of the snapper population.

For more tips, check out our Snapper 101 story from a few weeks ago

And if you’re itching to gear up for your own snapper adventure, swing by your local BCF.

When it comes to fishing, there’s nothing quite like the thrill of reeling in a snapper.

Happy fishing!

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