Sharks are warming up
  |  First Published: February 2014

The warmer months are shark time with gummies, school shark and huge bronze whalers making their presence felt. With the gummies up to 6ft long and bronzies up to 10ft, there is some serious flake cruising our beaches!

For those crews paddling baits out with a kayak, big baits like whole salmon, tuna and trevally are all scoring fish, and are best anchored about 200-300m off the beach. In closer, the gummies have been cruising the gutters and can be caught on baits of eel, pilchard and the most effective bait is Californian squid. Fished as whole baits these little squid are dynamite and hold up well against the crabs and small flathead that have been tearing softer baits to shreds.

From Marlo to Lake Tyers there have been huge schools of mega salmon and big numbers of pilchards in the breakers. It’s quite a sight seeing waves completely blacked out as the salmon, tailor and sharks herd the bait into the shallows.

Spinning with metal lures is proving the best method for salmon, but when they are in this close try soft plastics closer to the bottom as you may pick up a larger salmon, trevally or even a big flathead as they pick up the scraps from the mayhem.

Lake Tyers has been fairly slow with a few flathead and some nice bream taken around the channel markers on soft plastics and deep diving crankbaits. Live prawns have seen some good fish taken but most have been caught at first or last light on the drop-offs. The upper reaches of the Nowa Nowa arm have been fishing well for garfish and tailor. The gars are easily caught on sandworm under a float and the tailor can be caught either spinning with metal lures or live garfish.

Lakes Entrance has seen the annual whiting run start slow but some good bags have been taken by the anglers putting in the time. Fresh bait is always a winner and live shrimp or fresh mussels are about as good as you can get. Finding a good weed bed with a deep channel running parallel to it is essential to catching whiting.

Either a paternoster or running sinker rig is fine for whiting, and the best times are 2 hours either side of the tide changes. Berley will help hold them in the area, and mussel shells are perfect for this. You will also pick up flathead, mullet, salmon, leatherjacket and some thumping big luderick along these same weed beds.

The rock walls have been red hot with big luderick the common target. Some have been up around the 50cm mark, which are serious fish, in such a tough spot with sharp rocks and fast tide. Green weed fished under a running float rig is the traditional way, but drifting a peeled prawn along the rocks with a light running sinker rig will see a few caught too, along with whiting, bream and trevally.

The prawns have been thick right throughout the system. Best areas to walk the banks are the Old Club Hotel Bank, Bullock Island Creek, Eastern Beach and Kalimna Jetty. Those with boats should head over towards the barrier as the sandbars over there are loaded with prawns and big flounder. Be aware travelling at night as the prawn boats have their gear set at night and you don’t want to be running these over!

Offshore has been fishing well with big snapper down at the pipeline caught on slimy mackerel cubes and fresh squid.

The local reefs are slow but nannygai, pinky snapper and morwong have been caught, along with huge numbers of coota and mackerel. Rumours of striped tuna have filtered through from the east so they wont be far away.

Anchoring up in around 20m and berleying will put you in with a good chance at a bag of gummies. Again, fresh is best and coota chunks are awesome bait and stand up to the bait pickers that follow the berley trail.

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