Mulloway madness setting in
  |  First Published: November 2004

Greetings from the great southwest of Victoria. Fishing at the moment has been very good, with bream on the chew throughout the Glenelg River.

It’s funny how things change so quickly. Last month, with all the rain, the river was very dirty and we had to fish some of the deeper holes to catch fish that were hiding in the saltier water, beneath the large amount of freshwater on top. Crab has been the best bait and the lower 5-7km of the river have fished best, predominately in the estuary.

Winter was especially wet this year, hence the fish had been pushed down the river with the big fresh. Bream are still presently moving back upstream following the salt water that is slowly creeping back up the river turning the river into a huge estuary – 55km, in fact.

Plenty of juvenile bream are present and are playing havoc on soft baits. I fished the Sapling Creek area recently, 24-25km upstream, with cut pilchard and the juvenile fish gave me what for! It was a cold day, so it kept me warm. I wouldn’t be telling fibs if I said 40 bream came onboard, however, just nine were keepers with a personal minium size limit of 30cm.

At the time of writing, mulloway have been caught, but not in big numbers. As you’re reading this, however, mulloway madness would have set in! Again, with the wet winter pushing all that freshwater in to the sea, I believe it attracts fish to the estuaries.

The old putt-putt boats will certainly account for their share of mulloway this season, predominately by anglers trolling live mullet on a double 4/0-6/0 hook rig. Bass yabbies and spew worms are favourite baits for land-based anglers, but don’t discard pilchard or mullet fillet, as these will also take fish.

Rex Hunt’s old Creek Monsters work a treat and small Attack lures are fantastic. On one trip last year we caught mulloway, salmon, bream and a rainbow trout on an Attack lure – all in the same section of river! I’ve also seen some lovely fish taken on soft plastics. Personally, I’m too lazy to cast too many times, follow Lee Rayner’s tips on plastics in his article on the Glenelg River in Fishing Victoria (Volume 2). I fished with Lee recently and he said to my wife he’d packed plenty of rubber for our day out fishing. I don’t know who blushed the most!

Anyway, like all anglers, we live in hope every time we go out and there’s a lot worse we could do with our spare time! Call in and see me at the bar at the Nelson Hotel next time you’re in town and say hello.

For the latest fishing information, contact the Nelson Hotel, (08) 8738 4011.

Matthew Toohey with an 8.5kg mulloway caught on a cocktail of whitebait and pilchard from the public landing in Nelson.

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