Fishing in the Great Barrier Reef region can be an unforgettable experience, especially since the extension of the Marine Park to Mission Beach and surrounding Islands to ban trawling of any sort. Fish stocks have started to regenerate and the area is becoming a fishing Mecca like it use to be.
Mission Beach and surrounds, boast some of the finest and most diverse seafoods. From coral trout, barramundi to mud crabs and the tropical rock lobster, all are caught locally, as well as several prawn farms in our area that breed mostly tiger prawns.
The locals are known to eat the oysters of the rocks, so pack your oyster shucking knife and buy a lemon at the markets.
The Painted Cray or Tropical Rock Lobster (Palinurus Ornatus) is very ornate and vividly coloured and lives on rock and coral reefs. However there are three different types here, the painted is the most common but the Champayne and Green are good eating as well, just boil or BBQ as both ways are delicious. The locals say they are a different species to their cousins down south because they will not walk into a crayfish pot. Therefore the locals use a spear or wire loop or broom stick handle with a pair of pantyhose tied on the end so that when they prod underneath the coral bombies the crayfish feelers are entangled and then they pull them out and hold them to their chest, wet suites on of course, while they surface to put them in their boats.
Long before Europeans settled Australian shores, the aboriginals had established names for several common seafood species; a few of these names, such as Barramundi are still used today.
Come and try some of our local fare such as coral trout, crayfish, prawns, crabs, oysters and pippies.
The most common types of coral trout caught here, are the Common Variety or Leopard and the Bar Cheek Trout. The Bar Cheek is seen around the nearby coastal areas and inner reefs. Once top of the eating order was the Barramundi Cod but it is a 'no take fish' because it has been fished out and is almost extinct. Please do not mistake Barramundi Code with the plentiful Barramundi. And as the coral trout is the next best to eat, we have not gone into details of the myriad of other beautiful eating fish that are caught here.