Make the most of the breaks
  |  First Published: December 2013

At times we would be excused for thinking that the winter season is still with us, such are the temperatures. Every so often there is a brief break where things start to look up for a short period of time – this is when everything bad is forgotten. The fish take advantage of the situation and decide that it is mealtime.

The jetty has been well worth a visit in these conditions and there have been very good numbers of salmon to the 600g mark being taken on a variety of natural baits and artificial lures. The best results have been on the run-in tide; where there has also been good numbers of flathead, silvers and mullet.

It would be fair to say that whiting are a bit on the scarce side. There have been reasonable reports of them being caught at low water on both sides of the tide in the Lewis Channel near the long jetty.

There have been positive reports in the Franklin Channel where gummies and snapper have been caught on a variety of baits. George Hineson and a mate decided to try their luck on the last half of the run-out tide. Earlier they had caught some salmon and silvers, which were used as bait for some bigger fish. They were presented in fillet form and in a fairly short time the pair had a good bag of snapper to the 6kg, as well as four gummies, which made the effort well worthwhile.

The entrance has also been worth a try. The best time, as usual, is when the tide is not running too fast. The water in this area goes down to the 40m mark where good size flathead, snapper and gummy sharks are being taken. This area however can quickly turn nasty; in no time the wind can come out of nowhere and a dangerous situation can develop. The idea is to keep an eye on the weather and if in doubt head for shelter quickly as possible.

Beyond the entrance outwide there have been good numbers of flathead being caught on a variety of natural baits and as the water temperature continues to rise it seems that the capture rate also improves. There have also been quite good numbers of gummies making an appearance and salmon are being taken mainly on surface lures.

The other port nearby is Port Albert where there have been very encouraging reports. The jetties have been going along very well with a good variety of fish being taken mainly on the run-in tide.

Rob Killury who runs the local General Store says that the fishing has been going along very well with the ‘Petrel’ Fishing Club, from far away as Geelong, paying the annual visit to the area. This was to be yet another successful trip where they bagged an impressive mixture of fish made up mainly of flathead, pinkies and snapper. Although the reds were not huge there was one that dragged the scales way down to the 7kg mark, which is impressive in anyone’s language.

There have been other clubs that have already visited the area with similar success stories and Rob feels that even though summer has been a long time coming there will be plenty of fish to be caught if present indications are any guide. He is so confident that he is carrying out renovations to the store so that he can accommodate the extra business and he is extending his already impressive range of fishing gear. He is also expecting the gantry for the bigger fish as well as scales for the smaller ones to get a fair bit of a workout. Of course he has up-to-date info as far as the fishing situation and on what baits they are taking.

Outside the entrance in around the 20m mark there have been very good numbers of flathead and gummies making an appearance. I received a call from visiting angler Tom Jennings who says that he and a crew decided to try their luck at a tried and tested spot outside the entrance and managed a very impressive bag of flathead that were around the 1kg mark taken on strips of pilchards. They also caught two gummies that were around 1.5m and were happy, as they would be.

Wonthaggi angler Wally Leijen and his son went out on their annual fishing trip in the area and managed some very decent flathead and bream. The fish were all very good quality with one bream just nudging the 50cm mark, which is impressive. After photographs the big fellow was returned to the water to swim and fight another day.

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