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  |  First Published: February 2007

In spite of the quality of fishing on offer at the moment, there is no question the bay could do with a good flush of fresh water. Amongst some obviously more important needs for rain, an influx of fresh water would bring forage and baitfish species into the inshore waters again, giving the inshore fishery a real kick-start.


Trevor and Lynette Hogan at Launching Way have once again been flat out during one of the best snapper seasons on record. Some quality fish have turned up on marks out wide, including a 7.3kg ‘knobby’ with a nose would put Bill Lawry to shame!

It’s not all about snapper however, as some of the local juniors have shown. For a little variety, nine year old Jayden presented yet another ripper flattie to the scales recently that topped 2.6kg, a top effort on his whiting gear. Young Josh Herscell got in on the act inside the river too, landing a great bream of 1.1kg on a scrub worm, another top effort.

Not to be outdone by the kids, Pino Guzzo also got in on the act, trolling up some lovely snook around Olivers Hill on metal lures. Pino landed 15 fish in a frantic session with the two fish weighing 1.7 and 1.8kg. These fish are pretty good on the BBQ, and can be great fun to catch on light gear.

For the bream fishers out there, the action has been varied inside the “Patto”. This system can be very challenging, but fishing on the incoming tide and during periods of low light will generally pay dividends. Lure anglers will find the fish holding very tight to structure at present and will do well to fish with light leaders and weights. Small hard bodies like the Ecogear SX40 are a great choice and have accounted for some ripper fish recently. The best part is letting them go after a few pics, and it’s great to see some snapper anglers out there following this trend too.


Most of the snapper anglers breezing in the door at Billfisher Tackle over the last month are fishing out wide from Mount Martha. Presently the key water depth seems to be 17-21m, over a rough bottom. A welcome surprise has been the frequent capture of gummy sharks in the same location, yet another great sign of the health of our bay.

Locally, the pier anglers are tangling with some jumbo salmon to 2kg on the rough afternoons and garfish through the calmer periods of the day. Inshore squid fishing has been tough with the clear water, but the rewards are there for hard work and a good quality squid jig. Last but not least, some quality flathead have been taken by anglers using soft plastics in the shallows.


The boys at Sport Phillip Marine have had very similar snapper reports, but the local pier action has been a little more exciting. Recently, a large mako shark made its presence felt and was sighted by a charter boat crew as well as some divers. Kingfish have also been seen patrolling the pier and surrounding reef. They have chased retrieved lures, but so far as I know none have been landed.

Garfish are being caught from the rocks and beaches at dusk, especially with the help of berley, and some great whiting are falling to baits of fresh pippies from Bird Rock. Local youngsters have also been catching flathead on lures from the beach at Mount Martha at night.

Way Down South

Rod from Nepean Disposals in Rye reports that the fishing for quality pinkies and larger snapper (up to 2.5kg) has improved out from Rosebud, especially for those using fresh baits. Pier anglers have also been doing very well lately at Portsea and Sorrento, where some ripper whiting have been well and truly on the chew. The best time is during a rising tide, and fresh bait is best. Fresh squid strips, bass yabbies and fresh pippies or mussels are the go, as well as good quality chemically sharpened hooks.

Down south the squid have been quiet, but the large couta that have been around for a while are still there for those who want to troll up some fun. Just don’t forget the wire! The Rye back beach has also fished well for salmon recently, as well as turning up the odd seven-gill shark.

So, once again its been another choc-a-bloc month of fishing. Why not grab a rod and some bait or a few lures and have a go for yourself.

and Lynette Hogan).

and Lynette Hogan).

and Lynette Hogan).

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