Hard Work Pays Off at Portland
  |  First Published: August 2005

Fishermen who have been putting the effort in have been rewarded with good catches. With the winter weather better than normal for this time of year, anglers have ventured ‘out the back’, fishing in 60m to 80m on the Portland side of Cape Nelson. This area is traditionally good for spasmodic catches of snapper, coral perch, morwong, blue queen morwong, gummy sharks, big flathead – the list just goes on.

Local Tim Clark caught flathead to 52cm and also bagged out on snapper and other bottom dwellers. Another boat fishing in the same area had a bonus catch of a gummy shark weighing 7kg plus, a nice 3kg blue queen morwong along with a mixed bag of other common species.

Andrew Caldwell from Heywood caught his first blue queen morwong weighing in at 3.8kg (after cleaning) to add to his list of trophy fish. In this area it’s important to fish the top of the tide so check your local tide times. And use fresh bait with the added boost of some chum bait.

If you’re heading down this way and looking to head offshore, remember that you still have the harbour as a poor weather alternative.

Fish being caught in the harbour lately include mullet, black bream, haddock, the odd whiting, snapper and gummy shark.

Along the north shore, land-based fishers have had their fair share of good quality catches of winter snook, salmon, trevally and snapper. So there’s still fish for the taking if you are in the right spot at the right time.

The Lee Breakwall has slowed down somewhat, which is normal for this time of the year, but you can still catch the odd large snapper as previous years have shown.

Bridgewater Bay continues to produce some good-sized salmon weighing between 2 and 3kg. Local Mike Sheehan got a beauty that weighed in at 2.2kg.

This is a perfect time to target black bream or mullet in the Fitzroy and Surrey rivers. And mulloway in the mighty Glenelg River are still appearing, along with plentiful bream and mullet. Call in and see Neil at the Nelson Pub for an update on what’s being caught down that way.

Bluefin tuna have started to show themselves with reports of catches at Port MacDonnell over the border in South Australia. Weighing in at 6-10kg, these were caught in amongst the thick krill in the 150m depths halfway out to the shelf. These tuna are unusually small when compared to what is normally caught and are being taken late in the season. It just highlights the unseasonable weather patterns we’re having in this part of the country.

We’ve had large schools of krill bringing with them dolphins, seals, whales, gannets and birds. All are working flat out on this excellent food source, so there must be the odd school of small tuna moving through here as they are in Port MacDonnell.

At the moment these difficult-to-attain fish are frustrating most anglers who’ve been out there targeting them. But things can change rapidly as we all know. Don’t wait for others to extract trophy tuna from these rich waters. Get out there and try your luck and you may just wind up having the biggest win in the fish raffle.

Give us a call at Portland Bait & Tackle for the latest fishing news on (03) 5523 5213 or (03) 5523 1225. We are open 7 days a week from 8am to 5.30pm. Here’s to better fishing more often.

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