I don’t think I’ve seen shark fishing like this ever in my time and it doesn’t look like slowing down yet! The estuaries and lakes have fished well over this past week.
Saltwater: as I mentioned in the opening, the shark fishing has been exceptional! Rhooky landed his new personal best school shark which weighed in at 28kg. Peter Goode assisted Rhooky in compiling a nice bag of sharks and snapper. There has been a number of great captures of school and gummy sharks, both from deeper water and shallow ground. Max Fahey caught his personal best gummy while using a sabiki rig on a 1-3kg set up. In a more conventional technique, young gun Max Kandage landed another 3 nice sharks off Port Fairy with his dad Janaka, and good mate Peter Sedgley. Out of the 5 sharks the boys landed, Max caught 3 of them. Squid and fresh barracouta caught whilst on the water seems to be the best bet lately, with anchoring and berleying heavily being quite productive. If bottom bashing for sharks isn’t your thing, then you can hit the beaches up for some salmon. We have been fairly lucky with both the quality and the numbers of salmon that have been landed this season. We’ve just come out of a couple of quiet seasons where there were hardly any salmon about, but they seem to have come back very strong. Numerous fish over 2.5kg have been taken on lures cast deep into the feeding schools of fish. Walking the beach in search of these fast moving patches will ensure you actively target them and keep up with them. Doing this will give you the best chance to catch more fish rather than waiting for them to come to you by soaking a bait, and waiting for the school to swim by. If you’re like me and don’t like to walk too far, then using a berley bag just in the wash is the best way to get your berley out there as the waves do everything for you. Don’t sit the bag in too deep otherwise it will be swept away.
Estuaries: Warrnambool and District Anglers Club held their 2nd competition for the season in brilliant conditions over at the Fitzroy River on Sunday. Loads of bream were caught by both bait and lure anglers. None were bigger than the fish which Jessica Lane caught, which weighed 1.24kg but only measured 39cm. All the fish were full to the bream with weed (pardon the pun). If you weren’t fishing over the weed, then you just weren’t getting the bites. Heaviest bag went to the very consistent Shane Murphy with a 3.5kg 5 fish bag. In the junior it was a battle between the Uebergang boys Max and Levi; Max coming out on top with a fish of 560g. Michael Hunt and Jack Allwood caught some nice fish that day using lightly weighted soft plastics with hidden weights in them. Allansford and District Angling Club also held a competition on Sunday in both Yambuk and the Fitzroy river. Paul Lamb and Brendan Howard caught the heaviest 10 fish weighing 8.5kg. Howie also caught the heaviest fish in the open section. Axel Savage won the junior section with a bream weighing in at 785g. Further west, the Glenelg River is again full of mulloway but getting them to eat is another story. John McCosh purchased a new Garmin sounder off us and it wasn’t long until he was marking the mother load of fish up higher in the system. He was only able to land the one which was just size at 65cm. John mentioned getting mullet to troll is becoming harder, and at times near impossible. Don’t just think that there’s only mulloway in the river as there has been some great bream caught both down on the tide and up around the caves area. Fishing crab into the walls then lobbing one out in the deep after you give it a crack on the body with the handle of your knife. Doing this will make the juice of the crab shell ooze out and create a scent trail. Fishing black blades out deep is also a great technique this time of year for both bream and perch as well as the occasional mulloway. Short sharp hops with long pauses will get the fish excited and entice a strike. The Hopkins has seen some great fish caught in the upper region of the system. Casting deep diving hard bodies into the rocks and soft plastics on the mud banks has seen some great fishing had.
Freshwater: Skeeta Andrews has been catching some nice trout using a Daiwa Presso in Cali Gold colour. In his 2 recent trips he has landed 4 fish and had numerous follows without the fish committing so there are quite a few on the move. Just a note for anyone chasing trout to wear long pants and high boots as there has been plenty of snakes spotted already. Tread carefully and make sure you’ve always got your eyes down to avoid a disaster.
With a mixed weather report for this weekend there may be only one fishable day to get into the shark offshore. Either way there is plenty of other options available to us in the South West. Until next week tight lines and best of luck!