On the saltwater scene, anglers have been hampered recently with plenty of southeasterly winds, which make offshore fishing very difficult in this area.
King George whiting around the inshore reefs have been a popular target, particularly with other options that require better weather conditions, hard to access. Good size whiting from 38-45cm have been taken from the Killarney/Port fairy region with fresh squid and SA cockles being the most productive baits. There have been a few silver trevally, some good squid and plenty of pinkies also in this area.
Come April, whiting and pinkies will still be a worthwhile target species, however most saltwater anglers will have a bigger target on their mind – the southern bluefin tuna.
The questions on every SBT angler’s mind will be: Which port they will be most prolific off? Will they be in close/outwide? Big barrels or school fish? Fussy, flighty and hard to catch or devouring anything they see? Whatever the answers are, you can be sure that plenty of boats will be heading down the highway to find out.
A number of good mako sharks have been taken recently and these should continue to be a viable target as they are still encountered during tuna season. Makos have even been known to take a tuna lure and there is always plenty of berley around at this time of year in the form of tuna frames if you wish to change your offshore target from tuna to sharks.
The popularity of deep water bottom bouncing for blue-eye trevalla, gemfish, hapuka and associated ooglies has taken off recently and is another option for anglers equipped to fish at the depths required to target these tasty table fish.
The Hopkins River mouth is currently closed and fishing has quietened off as it does when the mouth remains closed for an extended time. The Easter tides in April often produce some good fishing so hopefully the mouth opens and things fire up again in this location.
If we ever get even a trickle of rain, April should see the local trout population begin to show themselves once more. Incredibly there are still plenty of bream cruising around in the freshwater section of the Merri River. I have been polaroiding some good-sized specimens that have are very spooky in the clear water. Fishing ultra light 2lb fluoro has been working but has also resulted in some decent dust-ups.Reads: 640