Surf Coast delivers the goods
  |  First Published: December 2010

The local pier has been a hive of activity with anglers trying to tempt the flighty calamari squid from inside the boat harbour.

Good numbers of squid can be targeted in the harbour early and late in the day but they do become hard to catch after constant fishing pressure. To out smart the cephalopods try down sizing your jig to a small 1.5 size and fish it deep and slow over the grass beds.

King George whiting are also available in the harbour and are best targeted from the end of the pier or the breakwall fishing back into the entrance. Use a light running sinker rig and pipis on a size 6 hook.

The rock platforms at Marengo and Blanket Bay are also worth a try for whiting around the high tide each day and don’t be surprise if you also encounter silver trevally and snapper in these locations.

For boat anglers King George whiting have been taken around the inshore reefs on pipis and squid fished on a running sinker rig. Late in the afternoon is a good time to target the whiting and they have been responding well to berley made from pellets and crushed pilchards soaked in tuna oil. Try out from the waterfall, Eliot River or the back of the golf course and look for the sandy channels amongst the reef.

Further out to sea in 35-40m of water has been a reliable place to get a quick feed of flathead while the reef edges off Cape Patton and Cape Otway have been producing snapper and gummy shark on the turn of the tides.

Blue and mako sharks can be tangled with in 70m of water after laying a constant trail of berley. Take along a squid jig while waiting for the sharks to turn up, as the arrow squid will be in large numbers once located. These make good tucker and excellent fresh bait for snapper, gummies and larger sharks.

Offshore of Blanket Bay in 38m, snapper to 3kg have been biting on fresh fish baits. They key to finding them is to locate the reef edges on your sounder and keep drifting over the drop-offs. Once you land a snapper mark it on your GPS and keep drifting back over that mark until the fish move on. Then start the searching process all over again.

Don’t forget the Great Ocean Sports Festival is on next month which contains The Big Catch fishing competition. Everyone is welcome and it is a great few days fishing and socialising.

Check out the website at www.gosportsfestival.com.au for more info.

January is the best time to target snapper on the deep-water reefs around Apollo Bay. These two fish were taken from a reef edge in 40m off Cape Patton.

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