Southwest Summer Action Heats Up
  |  First Published: December 2005

Things are shaping up for a good summer fishing season here in the South West if recent reports and weather conditions continue. Many of the summer species are well established and some good fish have been reported along the coast.

If good conditions prevail then some exciting surf fishing for sharks is on offer along the coast in December. Gummies and seven-gill sharks have been taken right along the coast, from the cliffs around Port Campbell right through to the surf beaches, such as Logans Beach and Yambuk.

Pinkie snapper have also moved inshore and have been taken by surf anglers as well as those anglers in small boats. Both the sharks and the pinkies will be viable targets throughout December.

With the recent warm weather, anglers will be hoping for a good run of kingfish along the coast this summer. At present there are still plenty of salmon along the coast with beaches around Peterborough and offshore at Port Fairy and Killarney being the pick of the spots.

Last summer some excellent light line sportfishing was available with schools of quality salmon between 3 and 4kg mixing with rat kings of a similar size. Targeting these fish around the inshore reefs can be very weather dependant. Low winds and small swells are essential for safe angling. If you see plenty of boats circling well known areas unsuccessfully, be prepared to go and do a little exploring of your own. It’s often a good way of locating fish that haven’t been spooked by constant boat traffic. Put your lures, flies or squid strips out and go searching.

Last December produced some fantastic bream fishing in the Hopkins, only for the fish to go very quiet in early January. It might be well worth hitting the river before the influx of holiday crowds. Both lure and bait fishermen were successful with many fish over 40cm reported.

The Curdies River ran high in early November, which made launching difficult. It should be fishing well through December if the mouth opens and water levels return to normal. Baits such as podworm, greyback and shrimp work best. Try along the weed beds downstream of the Boggy Creek ramp.

Many local anglers have been travelling across to Nelson to fish for the excellent run of mulloway. There has, however, been the odd fish taken in other areas such as the Moyne and the Gellibrand rivers. December is a time when there is also chance of the odd mulloway turning up in the Hopkins.

Estuary perch have started to be more prevalent in the bags of anglers of late after a quiet few months. Quality fish between 36-46cm have been reported on baits and lures in the lower section of the Hopkins from the bridge to the ski lane. If the weather wipes out the sea fishing options then there is always a few trout still to be taken in the local rivers during December. The rain that is usually part of that bad weather can often get the trout moving again and save a weekend trip if the offshore options disappear.

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