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Time to gear up for the coming snapper season
  |  First Published: September 2012



We are now well and truly on the wind up for the new season with continued reports of snapper, squid and salmon.

The question is are these fish all new season models or are they fish that have been hanging around for months, either way now is the time to get your gear out and get ready for the new season.

MORDIALLOC TO BLACK ROCK

The dredging of Mordialloc Creek hasn’t slowed the fishing one little bit with the mullet in full swing for the anglers who are wanting to fish with small baits suspended under floats. The by-catch has also been a few bream and the odd trevally. On the pier itself there has been a fairly consistent run of small to medium Australian salmon, which has been providing anglers with plenty of bent rods when casting small metal lures and soft plastics.

The end of the pier has also seen decent numbers of pinkies coming in. However it’s the coming weeks that the local pier crew are eagerly awaiting with the first influx of big snapper that move into the shallows any time from now.

Out in the boats the pinkies have still been going strongly through the Parkdale Pinnacles area and up to the mussel farm, with the by-catch coming in the form of solid flathead. While closer to shore there has been a few squid off Beaumaris Pier and an almost endless supply of garfish over the past weeks, which has kept anglers busy as they fish in comfort while protected from the strong northerly winds that have been fairly common over the past month.

Ricketts Point to Black Rock continues to have a solid run of pinkies on offer for the bait and lure anglers with plenty of fish in the 28-40cm size as well as more than the occasional 48-55cm snapper among them. Interestingly, this year seems to be evenly spread with both the bait and lure anglers getting their even share of pinkies. The upcoming weeks will be interesting to see if schools of big snapper start to move into this area to wreak havoc for the pinkie anglers and also heralding the start of the new snapper season.

Out deeper I have also heard of the odd bigger resident snapper still being taken over the past month with fish in the 2-4.5kg size being found on any of the reliable areas such as the two fingers mark and any other areas of rough bottom in 15-16m of water.

Finally down at Black Rock angler are proving you don’t have to own a boat to get into good fishing at this time of year with several customers catching plenty of pinkies from the car park at Half Moon Bay boat ramp, especially when it it’s rough. In fact one customer caught a number of pinkies between 500g-1kg over the past month.

SANDRINGHAM TO ST KILDA

It has been Australian salmon season in this area over the past weeks with plenty of bait in the area to attract the salmon, which in turn have the resident birds following and giving away their location as they tear up the baitfish. In many cases the salmon have been close enough to shore for the land-based anglers to get into the action with Sandringham Breakwall, Hampton Rock Groynes and Brighton Breakwall producing salmon between 500g-1.5kg on various days.

In the boats the anglers have been having a ball as they can easily move around to follow the schools. And for the smart anglers fishing a big soft plastic under the feeding salmon has also seen some 2-3kg snapper being taken as they sit under the salmon picking up the scraps.

Brighton breakwall has also seen good numbers of pinkies and garfish over the past weeks and hopefully this will only get better over this next month. As an added bonus some anglers have been finding some quality flathead on baits aimed at pinkies and with the water now starting to slowly warm up it would be well worth throwing a few plastics off the breakwall as the flatties get more active with the warmer water.

Further up the bay the shallow reefs running from Brighton to Elwood have all been producing pinkies, red mullet and the odd patch of salmon but the real highlight has been some solid squid that have been around the 800g-1kg mark, and while the numbers havn’t been big for the anglers who are prepared to work at it the results have seen bags of 4-10 solid calamari.

Finally reports have also been filtering through of good numbers of mullet to be found in Elwood drain with the best results coming to those anglers fishing the last of the run-in tide near the entrance where it flows into the bay. Keep this in mind if you are planning on gathering live bait to head out after a mulloway.

ST KILDA TO PORT MELBOURNE

St Kilda breakwall and pier have been producing a bit of a mixed bag over the past weeks with small pinkies, the odd trevally and some small mullet all popping up from time to time but fingers crossed if the big September rains don’t dirty up the bay in this area it should really start to fire up with pinkies.

Moving along the shoreline to Kerford Road and Lagoon piers anglers have still been reporting good numbers of pinkies on various nights along with the odd bigger snapper and some salmon, while during the day, especially when the northerly winds have been blowing it has been a great place to find a feed of garfish.

Along at Station Pier the trevally have been hanging around the pylons creating a heap of fun and tears as they tie anglers in knots around the pylons. While a larger bait cast out into the deeper water has seen a mix of flathead, pinkies and even the occasional small gummy shark being taken. Best of all however from now on bait cast out in this area can and will produce some quality fish over the coming months.

In the boats, Princess Pier and its surrounds have been keeping anglers busy with decent pinkies and the odd bigger snapper being taken at night with baits of fresh squid proving to be the undoing of some of the bigger fish.

Well there you have it another season rolls into action although personally it feels like the last one never ended.

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