Jurien Bay FADs fire up, bringing great new fishing options to the Mid-West

The sportfishing action in Jurien Bay has cranked up since the deployment of four FADs off the coastline! 

It is great to see fishers reap the benefits of catches from FADs across WA, with Recfishwest and local fishing community members pushing hard since 2019 to cement a fully established State-wide FADS program.  

Now thanks to all that effort, the State Government has committed to funding and coordinating the program in future from June of this year – a fantastic result for WA boat fishers with another great alternative to purely fishing for demersals, which will also have flow-on sustainability benefits. 

Along with the numbers of catches of sportfish improving – the sizes of some of the fish has been particularly impressive, with a few thumping dolphinfish caught recently on the Jurien FADs. 

One of those brutes, a 19kg dolphinfish landed by Daniel Woodman pictured below, was just one of multiple catches during his recent fishing trip with the Dawesville man making the 300km journey north just to have a crack at the Jurien Bay FADs.  

Daniel Woodman’s bull of a dolphinfish landed from one of the Jurien Bay FADs came in at a whopping 19kg, which is one of the biggest we’ve seen landed in WA and came close to the Australian record of 22kg.

“The day started at 4am when we left the marina and steamed out to FADs number 3 and 4 out from Jurien Bay. It wasn’t long before we were watching the sun rise out from the back of our boat named Goodtimes and the FAD came into view,” said Daniel. 

“We fished a mixture of gear and had a Nomad deep diver in close with a couple of large Pakula skirts trolled out the back.  

“In all, it was an amazing time catching dollies, tuna and wahoo next to the FADs. Living in Dawesville, I’m looking forward to getting out to the recently deployed FADs off Mandurah to see what we can catch on ‘home turf’!”  

Daniel had a few good tips to help other fishers increase their hook-ups out on the FADs .  

“As for the gear used in trolling and flicking lures around, any simple mid to heavy rod and reel that can handle bottom bouncing is more than sufficient. We were also using a homemade teaser setup with a mixture of pushers and birds on a daisy chain.” added Daniel.  

Some of the kind of gear that works well out on the FADs include skirts and stickbaits like the ones above produced by FADs photo comp supporter Richter Lures.

More fishers, more catches brings benefits for Jurien

Not only have the FADs attracted more fish, they’ve also attracted more fishers to Jurien Bay, all of whom spend money in the coastal town.  

Owner of Jurien Bay Seasports and Tackle, Shane Younger, said it has led to more boat fishers venturing into his store intent on spending their bucks on lures to fish the FADs. 

“After all the hard work it’s great to have got the FADs in for fishing in Jurien and we’re looking forward to seeing them go in earlier next year so we can reap the full benefits,” said Shane. “It’s certainly helped bring in more visitors to the shop and to town – and it all helps for a community like ours.”  

The Perth Game Fishing Club also held its recent fishing classic competition in Jurien Bay, with a huge majority of the contestants making their way out to the FADs to battle it out with some solid specimens landed.  

Talented Salty Bones artist Adam Ashdown’s visit out to the Jurien Bay FADs during the recent Perth Game Fishing Classic competition paid dividends, with this nice yellowfin tuna engulfing his lure.

Recfishwest is proud that the FADs we have deployed over the last four years have provided such exciting and memorable fishing experiences for so many, with the deployments and catches set to only increase in the future. 

“It has been a journey to get to this stage but all of the hard work and support we have had from so many in the fishing community and fishing clubs like Perth Game Fishing Club has paid off now that we have a fully established FADs program backed by the State Government moving forward,” said Recfishwest Operations Lead Matt Gillett.  

“We’re looking forward to seeing how DPIRD will continue to develop and coordinate the FADs program in the northern parts of the State during the winter months.”  

Want to have a crack at fishing any of the FADs currently deployed across WA? Find all of WA’s FADs coordinates here!  

Want to see the ten winners of our recent two-month long State-wide FADs photo competition? Check out the awesome FADs snaps on the Recfishwest Instagram page!

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