News of reds spreading quickly
  |  First Published: December 2015

As is usually the case at this time of the year, snapper and squid make an appearance and the news spreads quickly.

Rob Cartledge can often be found out on the water and says that he operates out of Port Welshpool and has been into the gummies that have been to the 4kg mark as well as very good size snapper. He says that the fish have been taking a variety of baits, which includes pilchards, squid and fresh fish fillets.

Among his favourite spots are places such the number two buoy in the Franklin Channel and already this year he has been doing very well on the snapper. He says that he intends to take out charters when he gets his boat organized and no doubt he will have plenty of customers on board.

Boaters are doing very well outside the entrance where there have been reports of salmon schools that have been taking just about any surface lure that is thrown in the water.

Already in these waters a fair way out in places such as Seal Island there have been reports of king fish, salmon and good size tuna being bagged, but be sure to take plenty of fuel. Also, make sure that you double check the weather forecast. If there is any doubt, don’t go out!

The jetties have been going quite well as far as land-based anglers are concerned. Tony Davidson is a regular visitor from Morwell and says that he doesn’t have a boat, but that doesn’t stop him trying his luck off the structure. He says that he always heads for the eastern end and has best results on the run-in tide. He has bagged mullet, silvers, flathead and a few whiting that have been making up quite reasonable bags. He likes to use berley that can consist of bread crumbs soaked in tuna oil as well as chook pellets and scraps of fish that have been put through the grinder. He reckons that this combination is better and cheaper from what is sold over the counter.

I usually make mention of Shallow Inlet, which is a short distance from Port Welshpool as the crow flies. This area has really started to fire up early according to Andrew and Karen Starrett, who run the local caravan park. They say that this area is a haven for winter fish when salmon and silvers usually turn up in great numbers and when the water temperature rises, the ‘summer’ fish will make an appearance.

Making an appearance they are, with whiting to the 40cm mark along with quality gummies and flathead that are taking a variety of baits. Karen says that the word has quickly spread and with the water temperature on the increase, so too are boaters who have high expectations.

Just a short drive to the east is Port Albert, and I always drop in and speak to Rob Killury who runs the local general store with wife Ulla. They have had the business for quite a few years and are always up to date as far as the local fishing is concerned. As well as fishing tips and info, they will point anyone, especially visitors, in the right direction as far as the fishing is concerned.

They say that this has been a different type of winter and one unusual aspect is the large numbers of quality whiting that aren’t usually in these numbers at this time of year. Having said that, no one is complaining.

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