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Big Buzz around Bluefin
  |  First Published: May 2009



All the buzz around Apollo Bay has been about the recent captures and sightings of southern bluefin tuna from wide of Cape Otway and Moonlight Head. Numerous sightings from the professional cray fishermen has had everyone talking about giving them a crack, but only a brave few have travelled the 60km+ to tackle the fast moving, hard pulling tuna.

Matt Kearton was the first to venture out into the deep blue and came up with the goods, hooking two bluefin around the 20kg mark. Matt only managed to boat one fish, which is still a great effort considering he was fishing alone.

The news quickly spread and it wasn’t long before the local charter boat was on its way to the shelf with some keen local anglers joining together to cover the cost. Three more bluefin to 30kg were landed on this trip including a 15kg albacore. I have also heard reports of one of the cray boats landing some more tuna to 30kg wide of Moonlight Head recently.

With the tuna run coming to an end this year, I’m sure next year will see plenty more boats launched from Apollo Bay. It’s a seven-hour return trip from Apollo Bay to Portland and only an extra hours travelling in the boat to reach the shelf off Apollo Bay so it makes sense!

The annual salmon run is in full swing with boat and land-based anglers catching plenty of fish. Surf fishers are having great success on the high tide from Wild Dog and Marengo beaches along with some great captures from the breakwall and Marengo rocks. Wading out in waste deepwater while wearing a wetsuit and casting metal lures has been very successful but bait has also caught plenty of fish.

Boats trolling the waterfall and Bumbry reefs have landed large numbers of fish up to 2kg and I have even seen a few die-hard anglers having some fun on their fly rods. There are plenty of salmon schools in the area so if you are catching small fish don’t be afraid to leave them to find some bigger specimens. Most of the salmon have been around 1kg but schools of 2 -3kg fish are cruising the coast as well.

Some much-needed rain recently opened the Barham River and as the water dropped the bream really fired up. Casting small hardbodied lures against the bank was very successful as was flyfishing. Josh Lee from Surf-n-Fish had a great time casting a weighted Fuzzel Bugger fly, landing several bream to 40cm.

The Aire and Kennet Rivers will also benefit from the recent rains and will be well worth a cast this month. Try soft plastic sandworms on the sand flats or hardbodied lures cast around the snags and weed beds.

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