Royal reports in the bay
  |  First Published: March 2014

Autumn is a fantastic time of the year, as we start to experience some of those calm weather spells. I find it one of the most enjoyable periods to fish.

This month the summer crowds are gone but the fish are still in good numbers and the last few years have even seen some of the best yellowtail kingfish caught in early March.


This is certainly a species that attracts a lot of attention at this time of the year. The great hunt for Victorian kingfish is on. The latest news is that we have had reports of rat kings on and off since January. However, there have been the first genuine reports of good fish taken over the last few weeks.

Offshore, off Ocean Grove, some of the wrecks have yielded fish to small knife jigs. Finding a bunch of slimy mackerel has also proved productive for those wanting to troll live baits. Many of the kingfish die-hards are very secretive but let me just say the time to go is now (hint hint, wink wink).

Gummy shark

It’s been a good year on the gummies and the reports have really not stopped since spring. It seems that anyone who takes the time to fish for them will see results as long as they stick to some basic rules.

Fresh baits are best, but failing that, good quality frozen salmon and silver trevally will work fine. The south channel has fished well off Rosebud but bigger fish have been found down around the Symmonds and south channel edges out from Chinamans Hat. If you are going to fish this end of the channel don’t go under-gunned with your sinkers – you may need as much as 14oz to hold the bottom (or more if you are fishing water deeper than 14m or 15m).

King George Whiting

Over the last few weeks I would go as far as to say that some of the best local fishing for whiting has been off Rosebud with some of the reefy ground producing some fantastic bags.

The good fishing has rolled on over in Western Port too, with plenty of anglers commenting on the ease with which they have nailed good bags off the middle spit, while fishing out of Stony Point or Hastings.


We saw an unusually large run of big squid in the last few weeks. Most of the action centred around the tidal water around the heads. Point Nepean to Portsea fished well as did the stretch between Lonsdale Bight and up to the mouth of Swan Bay.

For the most part the bigger fish were found in the deeper water, so fishing weighted or 30-40g jigs was what caught the calamari.

Looking Ahead

Let’s hope for plenty of calm, clear weather which really leaves the door open for all manner of fishy activities. It can be a great month for diving as well as chasing all of the local favoured species. For me it can be a great time to take advantage of the calm weather and get out in the rip and chase the huge schools of Australian salmon.

• For more information feel free to drop in and see the boys at Peninsula Total Tackle, 11 Boneo Road in Rosebud or phone: 03 5981 1994.


Ben Broomfield with a monster wobbygong shark he caught while fishing for gummies on the south channel. It is a very unusual catch in the bay.


A huge bag of middle spit whiting from the other side of the peninsula in WPB, taken by Gawaine Blake.


Nick Bailey with a lovely 10kg southern Port Phillip Bay gummy shark.


Tim Dornbruch with one of the fantastic calamari taken off Sorrento in the last month.

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