SBT rule the roost
  |  First Published: May 2012

Portland has come alive with a large number of boats and anglers arriving to chase the mighty SBT and albacore along with a vast array of other species that Portland is well known for.

With those heading out to the continental shelf, most of the SBT and albacore are mainly hooked east and west of the horseshoe area in depths of between 200-1000m. As the season progresses the location of the schools of SBT will also change as will their feeding patterns, at the moment there is plenty of sauries, squid, whitebait, pilchards, red herrings, slimy mackerel and krill around, which gives the SBT a smorgasbord to choose from.

There is plenty of bird action happening so keep your eyes open while trolling along as this is always a good indication that the SBT are feeding. Fish have also been caught while trolling with no bird action so keep your lures within the size range of the target baitfish as this will give you a better success rate of getting a hook up along with the correct boat speed and placement of lures.

Most fish have been caught on a mixture of lures from skirted lures, Xrap deep divers, Killer Vibes and Jet head lures. Colours have been varying on different days, so once you get your colours sorted out you will find there will be plenty of fish out there for everyone. Most of the SBT coming into the cleaning tables have been averaging between 15-30kg with albacore ranging from 10-20kg but there have also been numerous sightings of much larger SBT breaking the water with estimates between 70-130kg, so lets hope the action fires up as we head into May.

Anglers out on the continental shelf and spending their time bottom bouncing in depths of 400-500m in between chasing tuna have had success with good catches of blue eye trevalla, ling, blue grenadier and other deep water species.

For those wanting to try game fishing for SBT and albacore another option is to give us a call at the shop so we can put you onto some of the local Portland fishing charter operators who have a wealth of local knowledge and who have been keeping their customers happy returning with good catches of SBT and albacore.

Closer to shore

Land-based anglers fishing the Lee Breakwater have been landing snapper, barracouta, trevally, whiting, Australian salmon, calamari squid along with the odd gummy and school shark. Fishing in and around the harbour, both land and boating based parties have been getting a mixed bag of fish including snapper, whiting, trevally, bream, salmon and calamari squid.

Fishing in the canal there have been some good catches of bream along with trevally, salmon and mullet.

Over on the north shore around Julia Reef anglers have been coming home with good-sized gummy sharks and school sharks along with snapper and whiting. Heading towards Minerva Reef there has been the odd yellowtail kingfish still being caught with sizes ranging from 1-3kg with snapper, whiting and pike. Land-based anglers along the north shore have also been catching school shark, gummy shark, snapper, trevally and the odd whiting.

Fishing around Cape Bridgewater in depths between 60-100m has yielded good catches of flathead, school and gummy sharks. In Bridgewater Bay whiting, salmon, gummy and school sharks have also been caught. In front of Cape Nelson lighthouse and Lawrence rock fishing between 40-80m of water snapper, morwong, gurnard, nannygai, coral perch, bronze whalers and mako sharks have been caught in this area.

Mako sharks have been ranging from 40-100kg with the best being weighed in caught by Alan Prior weighing in at 99.7kg and Charlie Goarl landed a 142kg bronze shark Between Point Danger, Blacknose and Pivot.

Good catches of whiting averaging between 30-50cm have been caught in depths of between 3-9m of water, while for those chasing pike there have been good catches coming from around Lawrence Rock.

Freshwater fishing the Fitzroy and Surrey Rivers have had good catches of bream along with Yambuk Lake also producing good-sized bream up to 1kg.

So for all your latest fishing and weather reports give the boys at Portland Bait & Tackle a call on 0355235213, we are open 7 days a week from 7 till 7.

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