The fishing has been excellent and looks like it should continue right throughout the summer.
Gummy and school sharks have been taken from 40m of water off Blanket Bay and Cape Otway with fresh fish baits bringing the best results. Some of the sharks have been giving 30kg mark a nudge; so make sure you are armed with the right gear if you decide to target these species.
Anchoring near the reef edge with a berley pot deployed on the bottom or tied to the anchor chain should see the sharks lining up under your boat. I tend to fish with a 40lb mono leader until I get bitten off by a school shark, then I switch to wire. Using mono means more by-catch such as snapper, flathead and nannygai, which are all prime eating fish.
Flathead can be targeted in 30-40m on any sand bottom off Apollo Bay. Drifting with a 2-hook paternoster rig is best for this style of fishing and will see you filling the esky in no time.
The inshore reefs off Marengo, Blanket Bay and Point Bumbry are loaded with big King George whiting which can be caught using pipis for bait. A 6lb mainline and light rod to match is all that is needed to tackle the hard-fighting whiting and these tasty creatures should be around until after Easter.
The boat harbour at Apollo Bay is fishing well for calamari with size 2.5 squid jigs, both from a boat and off the pier with late afternoon being the prime time to tempt a cephalopod.
The Aire and Barham rivers are producing good captures of black bream when they are open to the ocean. Scrub worms or prawns fished on the bottom will catch you some fish but actively casting a lure will catch you even more. I have been using a new soft plastic called Dragon Maggot in 2” with great success. Fished on a 1.5g jighead and slowly hopped across the bottom the bream have been finding these irresistible. I have had sessions were over a dozen quality bream have hit the net in less then two hours fishing. Bream will take a variety of small lures including hardbodied, soft plastic, metal vibes or even flies so don’t be afraid to chop and change if whatever you are using is not working.Reads: 679