It’s the middle of winter and we have had some great weather for this time of year. This combined with the lack of swell has meant that we can venture further a field to some of the deep reefs. Most importantly the fishing has been kind.
The deeper reefs have been producing some great catches of snapper. We have been using a combination of squid and flesh baits to catch these fish. Make sure that you don’t ball up the bait as this causes the bait to spin like a propeller as you are drifting along and quite often is the difference between catching and not catching fish offshore. We have also been using large baits and doing well on gummy sharks while fishing for the snapper.
If a feed of flathead tails is what you are looking for then look no further than 30-40m of water down to the east. We have found that a single strip of squid has been the best bait. Fish this with your sinker bouncing along the bottom with a leader of around 60-70cm long trailing it. The flathead have been between 40-50cm long but don’t let this bother you as it doesn’t take long to catch your bag once you have found them.
Whiting have been plentiful right around Queenscliff with some absolute beauties of 50cm coming on board. The weed beds have been producing some good catches but don’t be afraid to search around for some of the big guys. Stand out bait is still fresh squid fished on a meter long leader and a running sinker.
We have been trolling skirts (Occys) close behind the breakers for Australian salmon with some fantastic fish of over 2kg smacking the lures. The salmon have also been hanging around the rip at the end of the ebb tide; just look for the birds and then troll the edges of the schools. Short finned pike of up to one metre long have also been showing up along the beaches. Troll your lures over weed beds if you want to target the pike. A piece of wire around 15cm long will come in handy as these fish have some pretty sharp teeth and can make short work of mono leaders.
Calamari have been a pretty regular visitor to bell reef and around to the pilot jetty. The calamari haven’t been huge so you should be working small squid jigs. Experiment with colours until you find one that works and fish them on the flood tide when the water is nice and clear.
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