Happy days on the Hoppies
  |  First Published: October 2016

The Hopkins River has been fishing well recently in the lower reaches, with big seas and high tides pushing in plenty of clean sea water, which has been encouraging the bream in particular to bite.

Both bait and lure anglers have been taking some good bags recently, with the best fish being in the low 40cm range. Come October, these fish will be starting to spread higher throughout the system. Most will probably still be schooled in the deeper sections, although a decent edge bite might be available as the weather warms.

Estuary perch should be on the move back to the freshwater regions after spawning in the estuary and warm, calm October evenings can produce a good surface bite.

Late in the month could also see some mulloway as the October and November period in the last few years has produced some good fish.

The Moyne River often has a population of bream and silver trevally at this time of year to test the drags. Mulloway are also often targeted in the Moyne at this time of year. The turn of the high tide is a popular time to try for them with live mullet, spew worms and clickers (Bass yabbies) being the most productive baits.

The winter season has been windy one for those who like to get out offshore. Opportunities to chase the tasty bottom fish have been fairly limited. Hopefully October throws up some calmer conditions, as some previous Octobers have produced some exceptional fishing for gummy and school sharks off both Warrnambool and Port Fairy in 30-40m.

Fresh bait, whether it be squid or cut fish, seemed to be a key to some of the better fish that were well over the 10kg range.

October is often a good month to do some surf fishing. There is still the chance of some good salmon being around, whilst the summer species such as pinkie snapper and various shark species should also be an option. A nice calm evening on Yambuk, Fitzroy, Logans or the Cutting beaches could provide some good action.

The inshore reefs should also see a few squid around for you to stock up on for bait for the summer ahead, if you can resist the temptation of eating them. Shallow reefs around Port Fairy and Lady Bay as well as the Warrnambool Breakwater and Port Campbell Jetty are good areas to target the squid.

After a non-event of a trout season last year, more rain this season has seen some good fish taken in the sections of the local rivers that were open over winter. Quality 1.6-2.2kg fish have been caught by anglers willing to put in the time in the dirty water, with the some better fish pushing 3kg. With the rivers flowing well, the trout should still be a good option locally in October should conditions put paid to the saltwater options.

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