Brisbane River Jew Fishing By Norman Forsythe

Brisbane River Jew Fishing AKA Jewies



Being elusive species, distinguished from other fish through their metallic silver/bronze sheen, shield like scales and with a large concave tail, fish up to 30kg is not uncommon and records reach into the 90kg’s range.

They reach sexual maturity at a length of 75cm, a 10kg Jewie is typically around 6 – 7 years old.

Minimum size for Jewies in Queensland is 75cm and a bag limit of 2. So please be aware as most of the Jewies around the area I am explaining will between the 50cm to 1m mark.

Ocean beaches during summer and deep estuary holes, river mouths and ports (any deep water during cooler months is generally better).

Brief Description

Mulloway/Jew Fish/Jewies, whatever you want to call them, they have to be one of the most prized sportfish in ready reach of every day anglers.  Mulloway is Aboriginal for “the great one” and to many Anglers, this is true.  They are an exclusive species and there is many write ups/advice/articles on how/when/where etc., to get these guys.  So all, what I’m going to do is try and point you in the right direction by giving you some advice and tactics on how I get my Jewies .


Jew Fish can be found all year round but I find in the Brisbane River where I target Jewies, around the mouth and port areas, anywhere there is deep water is the best place to target.

Start of winter, all through to late September is my prime months, overcast days, early mornings, dusk and night time, all top bite periods.


Just about any time I go Jew fishing I berley up, Jew Fish are not different than other fish and burley can mean the difference between bringing them in or missing out.

Most of the time I drift over deep edges, drop offs, holes and deep gutters making sure you are getting to the bottom.

Jew Fish grow large/very large, 30lbs to 50lbs fish over a metre are not uncommon, although a lot of the Jew Fish you will get will be around legal or smaller.   So please check current legislation and be aware of bag and size limits.

I use a 3 – 5 kg Rod, 10lbs Fire Line on a 2500 Daiwa Exceller and anywhere between 30lb to 60lbs fluoro carbon leader. Be sure to use at least 1 metre of leader or more as they will head straight for the nearest snag once hooked!

I go up to 30lb tournament braid on 7 – 10kg rod and a Penn Live Liner reel 3000 model for the bigger guys.

Bait Fishing

When Jew Fishing any live bait caught with a cast net etc is excellent for larger model fish, poddy mullet, herring, legal size tailor and large live prawns are all awesome bait when kept alive.

When you are using live bait remember to let them take the bait for a few second and to allow them to swallow the bait.

Soft Plastics

Soft plastics are where my success comes from when Jew Fishing and it has been on:

4 inch Z-Man swimmers,

5 inch Grass Kickerz and

3 inch Minnowz.


Colour depends on the weather, dark for dark days and bright on bright days, glow ones at night, any TT Jig head from 1/4 ounce up to 1 ounce depending on depth, current and wind.  Just get them down and keep em moving.

At night focus your cast and drifts around lights shining on the water and look for where the bait is hanging around and those Jewies are never too far behind.

Once hooked you should get a great first run, watch your drag setting. Once the first or second run is over you should be able to turn them and work them to you.

If you chose to take one for the table I would go for the ones under a metre as I find they are the best tasting ones.

Remember the Bag Limits can be checked at this location:


Additional Equipment:

With most fishing you only need the basics to make your day out a bit easier. These are just a suggestion:

–          Good pliers to remove hooks or trebles (Also good to keep fingers away from teeth and spikes)

–          A landing net suitable for the fish your targeting (Treble friendly if lure fishing)

–          A bait knife (Can be used as a Filleting knife if adequate)

–          A good filleting knife to get the most out of your catch (Not recommended as a bait knife!)

–          A decent pair of Braid Scissors (DON’T use teeth!!)

–          A good esky with ice and fluids which can be replaced by fillets if you’re a fillet and fry person.

–          An up to date “Size & Bag Limit” guide (Free at local tackle stores)

–          Sun block, broad brim hat, sunnies and long sleeve shirt and sturdy footwear.

Thanks to Norm

Norman Forsythe (Norm) has fished the waters from Brisbane River to Bribie Island using various techniques.

Norm likes to give any style of fishing a go from Bait, Soft Plastics, Hard Body Lures through to Blades.

Tackle Land would like to thank Norm for sharing his experiences with us all and hopefully you will pick up a couple of things that you have not tried to date.

Tackle Land Crew invite you to leave comments on your experiences or alternate techniques in the comment box below.

“Maintain The Passion”


  • Thaks mate,still yet to catch one out there.I usually target squire on the little reefs in the mouth of the river but love to get a jewy one day.maybe I will see you out there one day and get a few more tips.

    • Mitchell, Jewies are found throughout the Brisbane River system. They are mainly targeted from the rock wall at the mouth of the Brisbane River, the “Pipe Line” near Luggage Point, near the Boat Ramp at Pinkenbah and the opposite bank area right up to Breakfast Creek. There are several pontoon areas that you can use however some of these are “Private” and if used must be left clean and tidy otherwise they will be closed. Look for structure and generally they will not be far away! Happy Hunting


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