Cooler air temperatures have signalled the onset of winter, but it seems that someone has forgotten to tell the fish with the past month seeing some outstanding fishing in Port Phillip.
Especially for snapper, who seem to think its October with numbers of big fish being caught.
Best of all it seems that the good fishing is going to continue through this month, and as the water cools its time to crack out the squid jigs, grab a rod and head down to any of the piers or rocky shoreline in search of the tasty calamari that become so abundant at this time of year.
The creek has been fishing well for yellow eye mullet and some small trevally over the past weeks for anglers using floats, berley and baits of dough or small pieces of peeled prawn. I have also heard that some anglers have been doing well with the Berkley Gulp dough in the Chunky Cheese flavour.
On the pier the garfish have been going well with a range of different sized gars on offer for anglers to catch. During the day there has also been plenty of salmon cruising through the areas with anglers casting small metal lures finding good success.
While the evenings have been going well for pinkies, the majority of which are around 30cm, with some nice fish around 40cm.
For those who love the squid fishing, you will be pleased to hear that the squid have started to get caught off the pier with some regularity and it should only get better over the coming weeks
Out in the boats you could almost be forgiven for thinking it is actually snapper season, with excellent reports of good reds in the 3-6.5kg bracket being caught out around the yellow buoy off Mordialloc out to the 18m line.
Back in the bay itself, the Parkdale Pinnacles are fishing well for squid and pinkies, with the odd bigger snapper in the 2-4kg bracket in from this area of late.
Beaumaris Pier and the surrounding mussel farms have been great over the past month with some big schools of salmon in the 1-2kg bracket pushing the baitfish in close to shore, where land-based anglers are having a ball casting lures at the feeding fish.
The squid have also rocked up in the area in ever increasing numbers with the ink stains on the pier indicating the action. Out in the boats the fishing has been great for salmon, pinkies and squid with a lot of the action coming from the mussel farms through to Ricketts Point.
From Ricketts Point through to Black Rock, the reef edge is holding loads of small pinkies in the 25-35cm size. There are however some much bigger fish among them with several snapper being caught around the 4kg mark and one customer actually hooking and landing a 6.2kg red on a plastic.
Another good Fishing Fever customer, Steve, proved that you just don’t know what can turn up with several trips in May seeing him hook, lose and land kingfish to 75cm while fishing the area with soft plastics.
Over the coming month it’s a red hot time to get out to the Anonyma Shoal and troll some small diving lures around the reef edge where there are lots of good-sized snook to be caught. You will also find some solid pinkies that are keen to also smash a trolled lure or a soft plastic.
Out in the deeper water there are also lots of small barracouta and schools of scad, not to mention the big garfish. Needless to say the snapper fishing off Sandringham to Brighton has also been going well out along the edge of the shipping lane, with best results coming to those anglers who are fishing the tide changes and berleying hard with pilchard cubes.
Best baits however seem to be fresh ‘couta, squid and silver whiting.
In closer, the groynes off Hampton have started to produce small pinkies and the odd squid. While the shallow reef at Green Point has also been holding some nice squid and solid garfish on the high tide for both land-based and boat anglers.
Brighton Breakwall has been fishing very nicely for pinkies that have ranged anywhere from undersize up to several kilos in weight. The by-catch along the breakwall has been coming in the form of some nice salmon and the odd trevally. Adding to this the squid fishing should really improve over the coming weeks and months.
The North Road ramp area is well worth a look for squid over the coming weeks, and while it doesn’t get much of a mention as a fishing location it has plenty of great shallow reef that runs into the shoreline, making it the perfect spot for a bit of land-based or boat based squid fishing.
This area is also a really productive patch of reef to chase the very tasty red mullet, which seem to really come on the chew here at this time of year. Best of all they love to eat a small soft plastic such as a Gulp 3”minnow or a Gulp Turtleback worm hopped along the bottom, while for bait anglers small squid strips or peeled prawn is dynamite.
As the water really starts to cool at this end of the bay, some of the fish species slow up, but others really come on the chew with the next month producing some good snapper fishing for those who can handle the cold nights with the shallow reef off Elwood drain producing pinkies and big snapper in the same area.
Between St Kilda Marina and the pier itself there has been reports of anglers still getting some decent flathead on soft plastics or white bait hopped along the bottom, while further along towards Kerford Road Pier and The Motor Boat Club there has been some pinkies and the odd squid.
Lagoon Pier has been holding the odd mullet and garfish in close to the pier for anglers using berley and floats. For anglers wanting a crack at a bigger fish there have been reports of several decent fish being hooked and lost on larger baits cast out on surf rods.
In this part of the world, this could mean anything from a stingray to a big snapper or a huge mulloway, which frequent the area at this time of year.Reads: 4731