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Bull shark caught in Noosa creek

This 2.8-metre bull shark was caught 15km inland from the mouth of the Noosa River.
This 2.8-metre bull shark was caught 15km inland from the mouth of the Noosa River.

THE two anglers who hooked a giant shark may land themselves in hot water, with the catch deemed illegal by the State Government.

The giant bull shark that shocked Daily readers was almost double the legal size, under a law put in force six months ago.

According to the new law, most sharks above 1.5m in length were not to be caught, but Great whites, Grey nurses, Sawfish and Speartooth sharks were not to be caught.

Mark Saunders, of Verrierdale, near Noosa, said his son James, 22, caught this mature bull shark under the Eenie Creek Bridge at dusk on December 27.

It measured 2.8m in length and Mark estimated its weight at about 70kg.

“I couldn’t lift it and when I opened its mouth with my gumboot there were rows of big, sharp, pointy teeth,” he said.

For those people unfamiliar with the area, Eenie Creek Bridge is more than 15km from the mouth of the Noosa River.

And it is not a wide creek at that point.

Mr Saunders said the Eenie Creek channel was only about five metres wide and three metres deep.

To get so far inland the shark had to swim across the Noosa bar, past the Noosa River caravan park, up Weyba Creek to Lake Weyba, then into Eenie Creek.

Mr Saunders said his son caught the shark on a live fingermark bream caught in the same stretch of water.

“We’ve seen big disturbances in the water there regularly before but weren’t sure if they were mangrove jack or sharks,” he said.

“There are a lot of big mullet running at the moment which are no doubt attracting the predators.

“We were targeting sharks and this is not the first one we have caught in the rivers.”

Early in December while fishing the mouth of a Maroochy River tributary west of Mt Coolum they landed a one-metre mako shark, a species Mr Saunders said was unusual to find upriver.

The Saunders learnt how to catch sharks fishing the coast “down south” before moving to the Coast.

Mr Saunders said the bull shark caught at Eenie Creek Bridge was about the size for that species which hunted in packs.

“They’re fairly active between October and February or March because of the warmer water,” he said.

“That’s when there are the big tides and plenty of bait fish about.

“They are in all the canals around Twin Waters and the Maroochy River too, that’s for sure.”

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