Consistency delivers catches
  |  First Published: June 2014

I’ve fished up and down the Barwon River a few times since the last report. I haven’t really set the world on fire but there have seen some fair carp grassed by anglers fishing from the bank near the end of Fyans Street and near Ballyang Sanctuary.

I’ve trapped a few live gudgeon in the bank side weeds and managed the odd smaller redfin around 400g. Other anglers have caught some larger redfin to 600g (about 35cm) casting single tailed grubs parallel to the bank up near Queens Park.

Expect the redfin fishing to slow right down over July as the water temperature drops. Big rains will discolour the water and you’re better off heading down to the estuary at Barwon Heads to try for bream or head out to Wurdee Bulloc Reservoir near Moriac.

Corio Bay

Ross Winstanley has been fishing the area on the northeast edge of the Stingaree Bay spoil grounds over the past month, getting all whiting some days, all pinkies other days but always a good feed. Recently, Ross caught 5 pinkie snapper, 5 whiting and 3 yank flathead, the biggest measured 58cm.

Ross followed that up the next day with a further 6 pinkie snapper, 5 whiting, 5 yank flatties and a solitary mullet. Ross says that most of his whiting were around 34-37cm and the action is mostly between 6am and 7am. He also added that thankfully the banjo sharks have eased off!

Keener than keen, snapper anglers prepare the beanie and thermos for all night efforts on Corio Bay’s winter resident snapper this time of year. Top spots where whoppers have been caught include out front of the Royal Geelong Yacht Club, Wester Beach and Corio Quay. Pilchards, red rockets and silver whiting seem to be the best winter bait.

Snotty trevally have been reasonably thin the last few years. Traditionally, they used to really turn it on around Cunningham Pier. Let’s hope this year marks their comeback. If you’re reasonably keen to see if there are any kicking about Cunningham Pier this July, try unweighted hooks baited with raw chicken or pilchard fillet when a high tide is about to run out on dawn.

Clifton Springs and Portarlington

Clifton Springs and Portarlington have slowed somewhat after the water has cooled off. The back end of April saw pinkie snapper still kicking about the Hermsley bank in between Point Henry and Clifton Springs.

Calamari have often saved a fishing trip and thankfully we can still expect a few of these to be kicking around the shallow weed beds this time of year.

St Leonards to Queenscliff

Rod Ludlow from Beachlea Boat Hire at Indented Head says the squid have been going great guns. Rod has had some boats bagging out between Grassy Point and Indented Head. They were on and off throughout the day with the morning and evening best. Rod says that you need to try in close and also out deep to locate them with natural coloured jigs working best.

Land-based anglers have also been catching them from Portarlington Pier. After dark they can congregate just on the limit of the lights on the Portarlington Pier. They take some coaxing but are worth a look through July.

Queenscliff does yield quality fish this time of year for those prepared to put in an extra hour here and there. Silver trevally and calamari can turn up at any time almost all year inside the boat harbour and ‘the Cut’.

Barwon Heads and Surf Coast

The Barwon River estuary had a good run of elephant fish late April and into May.

Silver trevally should be a prime target this winter. They can be caught from the mouth to the lake and will take most soft baits such as pipis, raw chicken and pilchard fillets.

Anglers with big rods who are keen on mulloway could be keeping a close eye on this estuary since there has been a few either side of legal length (60cm) caught over the warmer months.

Traditionally, the Barwon River estuary was the place for trophy sized mulloway up around the 20kg mark. Last summer saw a couple around 4-6kg landed amongst the smaller fish, so hopefully we see a few larger units boated this July.

Hayden McDonald took his two sons, Hunter and Cooper, out for their new boat’s maiden voyage off the Surf Coast recently. The McDonald trio did well catching silver trevally plus some Australian salmon, which were headed for the smoker. They also hit Spring Creek at Torquay where they caught and released a few bream around 28cm.

Mick Allardyce from High Tide Constructions at Anglesea says there has been a few salmon to 1kg caught from the local beaches but when the swell picks up it tends to drive them out of casting range.

Mick has also been offshore where he tangled with all sorts including nannygai, sergeant baker and morwong.

Catch a few around Geelong, Bellarine Peninsula or Surf Coast to Lorne recently? Send in a report to --e-mail address hidden-- with “VFM” in the subject field or give me a call on 0408 997 348. Please include where (without giving away your secret spot!), when, what on and who caught the fish. Pictures are always great, but please make sure they are at least 1mb (file size).

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