Every time I find myself wanting to catch some large mouth nannygai, I’m always on the look out for Wonky Holes!
Large mouth nannygai are a beautiful red sportsfish in the Lutjanidae family – a relation of Fingermark and Mangrove Jack.
Large mouth nannygai are great to eat and fight hard! They are typcially found offshore in rubble country and especially in areas trawler guys have dubbed Wonky Holes.
Wonky Holes are one of my favourite locations to catch huge large mouth nannygai! Especially since you don’t have to head all the way to the reef.
Even to the extent that I veer away from my destination, just to travel to some country that looks indicative on the charts. I think this addiction of 25 years really starting to take hold and I just can’t help it.
Over the Christmas break on a trip from Townsville to Cairns in our game boat “Mood Swings”, I found myself feeding the addiction once again in the hunt for large mouth nannygai. I swear one day I will run into something (charter boat, what charter boat?? haha) because I’ve had my eye on the sounder too long.
But this is how you find the good country and fishing spots holding massive large mouth nannygai that have never been touched before. Best part is you can do it in a SMALL BOAT.
We were coming into Fitzroy Island to spend the night and we still had a few hours of daylight left so decided to take a wide turn past some ground that looked interesting on the charts. Sure enough in half an hour I found a couple and some had really good numbers of fish.
You could have fished these areas in a 4 mt tinny as we were no further than 5 mile off the coast. Using an 80 gram twitch lure I had a quick drop on one of them and before my jig reached the bottom I was on. A nice 5 to 6 kg Scarlet seas perch popped up and we moved on and anchored up at Fitzroy for the night.
Next morning popping in to the same region I found another 4 and had a quick drop on one before heading into Cairns. Same result again and another great large mouth nannygai to take back for mum and dad. We made a quick video which you can watch below.
Cairns is blessed with most of the main ingredients needed for a brilliant destination to hunt Wonky holes and their resident large mouth nannygai. The major rivers, Inlet and the slope of the ancient valley (pre last ice age) make it amazing country.
The Giant ranges out the back are another contributing factor.
My Wonky Holes online fishing course covers all this and gives you the pathway required to find and fish them consistently. Here are a couple of students having great success in this area…
Cairns is the start of the region where the ranges get pretty close to the ocean which can pronounce the effects that cause Wonky Holes to form very close to shore. Port Douglas, the Daintree and Cooktown are all blessed with major areas of Wonky Holes.
While Wonky Holes are found right down to Fraser island and there are other areas (e.g. Gulf of Carpentaria) that have some good country, it’s Cairns north that’s my favourite. You just cannot beat that ease of access in a small boat.
So although you might see me fish them in our 40 footer, much of my large mouth nannygai hunting has been in my 5.6 m barra boat. Yes seriously the inshore angler now has a chance to catch good fish without upgrading his boat! Obviously though you’ll still have to play it safe with the weather regardless and only go when its good.
Many of my students are now suffering the same illness and finding themselves getting addicted to finding these honey holes.
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