Calamari dreamin’ in August
  |  First Published: August 2016

If we are lucky we may see a break in the weather sometime during August – this always gives cause to anglers to get out there and get amongst it after a couple of quiet months.

I really enjoy this period of the year as we generally start to see some captures of big squid. These are generally the first of the breeders entering the bay to lay their eggs. It’s a great time for the calamari lovers out there and it can all be achieved land-based, with plenty of the piers often seeing good quality captures at this time of year.

Southern Calamari

We have already seen good signs after the last few weeks that we will see some big squid through the next month. Already I have had regular customers in my shop taking calamari up to 1.5kg while doing drifts on the calm days. Matt Garrett was one of those who nailed a beauty in this size range after doing some drifts off Rye.

A lot of our local ground on the peninsula is holding squid and there still is some variety in the sizes but pockets of bigger or even a mix of sizes are starting to become more common as we move into the season. We have seen some captures land-based at Portsea Pier, but there have been more modest size said at Rye Pier and Blairgowrie Marina.

Out in the boat, many anglers have been doing a mix of whiting fishing and squid fishing, so areas such as the Pinnace Channel and Tootgarook have been getting a bit of attention.

I would not say there has been any standout jig or colour of jig. Plenty of the classics have been working, including the white Shimano Sephia, the EWC Harimitsu and the Black/Red Yakamito.

Australian Salmon

We are not quite out of winter yet, so it is pretty hard not to mention the Aussie salmon fishing. I feel like this year may have been a bit more subdued on the back beaches, not so much in the numbers of fish, but maybe more in the number of anglers targeting them. I can only put this down to the fact that it has been pretty wet and miserable, but with that said, there has been some really good fish taken in the last couple of weeks.

We are regularly seeing fish to about 1.5kg, but as always there is a bit of a range with the occasional 2kg model, but there’s also action at the other end of the scale where we have seen some schools come through that may only be 600g.

For those spinning lures, metals in blue, green, gold and the red head colour seem to have been catching the most fish. In my opinion, those spinning lures seem to be catching more fish at the moment, so it may be worth having a crack if you are finding the bait fishing a bit slow. Ideally, set yourself up with a 9ft graphite surf spin outfit, this will ensure you are getting your lure right out there in the catch zone.


Whether it is already the greatly reduced number of netters or we are just having a better season, I don’t know, but what I do know is that our whiting fishing continues to power on. We have seen good fishing at St Leonards, Tootgarook, the Sisters and off Rosebud. There seems to be plenty of King George around for anyone who cares to chase them. Current sizes are mostly around 35cm but bigger fish are not uncommon.

Looking Ahead

September is officially spring, and with it comes one of the biggest events on our piscatorial calendar – the snapper run! During August many anglers get boats and gear in order not only for the snapper season but just generally for the warmer fishing months.

Each year is different, last year we had barrel bluefin show-up offshore, so you never really know what is going to happen and that is the magic of fishing. I love keeping an eye on social media at this time, as whatever it is you chase, reports generally start to come through thick and fast, which is a great way to get inspiration for your next trip!

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

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