Offshore fishing at Portland and Warrnambool should be productive in March as warm water and fine conditions generally continue throughout the month.
During January at Warrnambool good snapper to around 3kg and some trevally to 2kg were taken in the Lady Bay area and slightly further along the coast.
At Killarney, whiting, salmon and trevally have been captured when conditions have allowed. The salmon in particular have been quite good specimens up to 3.5kg, which is unusual for this time of year.
Portland, as always, continues to provide some excellent catches with large whiting, the odd mulloway, sharks and plenty of pinkies, but at the time of writing perhaps it hasn’t fired up as consistently as it has fished in past summers. Better weather and warmer water should see the fishing improve.
Trout fishing in the local rivers is generally not a popular option at this time of year but a burst of heavy rain during storms can provide a temporary increase in water flow, which can induce a hot bite. Watch the snakes at this time of year along any of the trout streams.
The ABT BREAM series moves to the local area at the start of the month with the first round of the Victorian leg on the Glenelg River at Nelson. If you’re making the trip there are plenty of alternative locations on the way to test out all your equipment and to refine your techniques during the two-week pre-fishing ban at Nelson.
The Hopkins River is always a popular venue for lure anglers. The river contains some similar structure to the Glenelg and the techniques that produce in the Hopkins also usually work well in the Glenelg.
The Hopkins has fished well over the summer despite some patchy periods. The largest bream I caught and released was 46cm and I heard of fish up to 49cm being taken.
Remember that fish of this size can be more than 25 years old. If you’re after a protein fix there are plenty of smaller bream or alternative species in the region.
Continuing west, the Moyne has very little in the way of bream fishing at this time of year with most fish being well upstream and inaccessible to boats.
Mulloway, however, can be present in the lower sections of the river at this time.
Further along the highway lies a turn-off to the Fitzroy River. It has a suitable ramp for launching all manner of estuary craft which can then over proceed a few kilometres of fishable water upstream. The Fitzroy River was fishing very well this time last year, providing multiple catches of bream up to 800g on a variety of soft plastic lures.
Continuing along the coast, if you want to try something a little different from bream Portland Harbour is sheltered in virtually all weather and can be an interesting place to throw a soft plastic.
Along the north shore, if conditions permit, or launching at Wally’s ramp if you have a 4WD, can also provide some constant soft plastic action. Hooking into some pinky snapper is a great way of testing out the bream gear. Most will be small but I’ve caught fish to 2.4kg on the bream gear this summer and it is a lot of fun.
Four inch Berkley Power Minnows and 3”Fins-S Fish have been two reliable producers in water depths between five and eight metres.Reads: 1219