Just when we thought the strong winds were behind us mother nature thought it would be cool to throw some 50km/h+ winds along our coast line putting a halt on anglers targeting offshore species. The plus side of the last week is that the summer run of tuna have been spotted around the traps so once the sea settles down we will be back into them again.
Offshore: the reports from out offshore have been very limited due to the inclement weather but never the less when conditions are right the fishing is still great! The long awaited return of the summer bluefin tuna schools has been the hype of the fishing community especially those who live for them this time of year. Scott Gray found a few patches of the average 12kg-15kg fish but he also stumbled across some big suckers estimated around the 50-60kg mark. Like other years these fish were very finnicky on this given day and were spooking very easily. Most of the time the reason they don’t eat our lures is purely the fact that these big fish over summer eat super small baits which makes matching the hatch very hard. Don’t get me wrong some days they eat anything that’s put in front of them but others can be like someone has flicked the do not eat button on them. Usually when the fish are spooky the best technique is dropping down in leader size and lure size and casting stick baits and metal lures into the schools up wind so the boat can drift silently down onto them. We have just received a big order of the Nomad Riptide 105 stick baits that cleaned up last year and have also got the Halco Slidog stick baits in 105 and 125mm in a great range of colours. They weigh a fair bit so casting a long distance is relatively easy with the right tackle. In other offshore reports the gummy and school shark fishing has again been excellent with some ripper fish taken from Warrnambool and Port Fairy. Peter Goode and Stephen Rhook caught a great feed late last week with the best gummy going 20kg! I also heard of a 30kg cleaned gummy that a couple of locals landed off Warrnambool as well. The great thing was that they noticed the big gut on it and cut the shark open straight away where they discovered over 20 pups which were all released. The snapper have also been steady but all on the smaller size which can be quite annoying at times but if you fish through the smaller ones then you’ll come up trumps with a decent fish.
Estuaries: The Curdies River has again picked back up producing some nice bream and perch right through the system on both lures and baits. Peter White and Sticks Johnson fished down there last week landing some great bream to 43cm on soft plastics and vibes. Our Pure Fishing rep Mick Moore fished there also on Friday night and Saturday morning where he and his mate landed some great perch and bream up from the boggy boat ramp on hard bodies. This way of fishing can be a very expensive exercise due to the nature of where these fish sit amongst the heavy timber. Don’t do what I do and fish light leaders up there as it turns out pretty badly. The Hopkins River has been a mixed report this week with some nice fish being taken and others not landing a thing. I had the pleasure of working with the Year 5 St Josephs primary school kids on Thursday with a fishing clinic on the Hopkins River bridge. Most of the kids had never landed a fish and by the end of it everyone that had not caught a fish before landed their first fish. Some of the smiles on kids faces were priceless and we even had one girl doing the old Rex Hunt kiss it and let it go again to every fish she caught. By the end of the clinic we tallied up 60+ fish were caught with a mixture of some nice bream to high 30’s, big mullet, salmon and a puffer fish too. Most of the fish were caught on the humble old prawn that had to be shelled for them to eat it but when they did the bites were very aggressive with one fish nearly ripping the rod over the hand rail of the bridge. There are also some nice fish being taken on crab along the walls now so summer is looking really promising for a lot of rock wall fishing.
This weekend sees some less than ideal weather conditions to be heading offshore again so the rivers and lakes will be the hot spots. Sunday should see some topwater action for the bream and perch after a warm day so that’s where the action will be. Until next week tight lines and best of luck.