Like many of the region’s estuary systems, Mallacoota Lake and the Betka River are now closed off to the ocean after a prolonged period of little rain and plenty of big seas.
This means the water will cool down more slowly in the lake than if the system were open to the ocean because the cold water from Bass Strait won’t push in.
Unlike other years, when there can be a distinct change of water temperature, waters now will be more uniform so the fish should remain spread throughout the entire system.
Years ago, it was uncommon for a big estuary like Mallacoota to be closed off to the ocean, but now it’s a common occurrence.
The fishing of late has been good with plenty of legal flathead to 45cm caught in the deeper water in the Front Lake with good catches around the John Bull channel marker. Big schools of whitebait are present right through the system, making whitebait a good choice of bait. Any lure that imitates a whitebait would be a good choice.
The bigger flathead have been caught in the shallower water around the margins of the lake. Large lures like the Firebait Excel Minnow in colour no. 22 have been catching plenty of big fish.
Yellowfin bream have been caught around the weed beds of the Front Lake with nippers and lures both working. Hard-bodied lures, such as the Strike Pro Pygmy in the yellow-bellied model, have been working exceptionally well.
Plenty of small black bream have been caught too. The bigger blacks have been a bit scarce of late but the rivers and creeks are holding plenty of the smaller specimens.
Estuary perch have been caught from the usual snags but, as is typical of this species, they are on one day and shut down the next.
Salmon have been caught along the beaches with plenty of good gutters to choose from. Metal lures and pilchards have both been working well.Reads: 587