It’s time to get all the snapper gear out. Service your reels, spool up with new line, start collecting fresh bait, service the boat and get out on the water and dangle some lines. There are reports of new seasons snapper in the 4–6kg range being taken off Tortoise Head, Rhyll and Corinella. Some of the fish were reported to be full of roe, which could indicate an early start to the snapper season.
Unfortunately the weather has not been great for surf fishing, but the diehards are still getting some good fish. John Vincent managed a couple of good fish to 3kg at Gunnamatta, fishing the top half of the rising tide with bluebait. The biggest fish gave him quite a tussle. It was the best fish he has caught off the surf in quite a long time, so he went home a very happy man.
Elsewhere, Woolamai has been producing good numbers of salmon to 1.5kg. There are fish being caught at Kilcunda beaches to 1kg, while Williamsons is running hot and cold with good fish to 2kg one day and sardines the next.
Below the bridge it’s been very quiet with just a few whiting and flathead being caught.
Above the bridge, in the Cleelands Bight area, the calamari are starting to show up. Fishing with silver whiting on jigs is the most productive way to catch a feed here. As I mentioned earlier, some early new season snapper are making an appearance further up the bay at Corinella and Lang Lang. There are also some reasonable gummies being taken in the same areas.
The Newhaven Jetty has been fishing reasonably, well with salmon and trevally being the main target species. The top half of the run-in tide is the best time to fish.
There have been some good reports of big whiting coming in from the Cat Bay area, and also a few good fish in the Flinders area as well. The big calamari are about off Flinders, and the locals are doing well. There have also been some good catches of squid off Hastings and Stony Point, so it’s time to go and catch a few for a feed and a few for snapper bait.
I fished the opening of the trout season in South Gippsland with my daughters and grandkids, and was amazed at how low the water level had dropped in the river so early in the season. Despite the low, clear water we still managed to bag a few nice trout. Let’s hope we get some good spring rains or our fish could be in trouble if we have a hot summer as predicted.Reads: 536