Coming in to Autumn there has been plenty of action for land based anglers around both bays. Many people think they should be putting the gear away as we edge into colder weather, but in many cases the fishing can be better with the onset of Autumn and Winter species.

The gummies can be excellent throughout Autumn as customer Anel has been finding first hand. Anel has been fishing some beaches in Westernport with mates, were they have found no shortage of small table sized sharks. Baits of pilchard and salmon have been excellent with many small gummies taking a like to the baits.


You really know that Autumn is well and truly here once the elephant fish show up. Anel has said that in many areas of northern Westernport bay they are almost in plague numbers. Many elephant fish like this one have been eating baits intended for gummies, with pilchard and fresh squid some of their favourites.


A bit closer to home in Port Phillip, customer Ismail has been fishing around Mordialloc and Beaumaris. Just recently he landed this nice little gummy from Beaumaris jetty just after dark. The gummy took a pilchard cube fished on a 5/0 'Snapper Wizard' paternoster rig and measured 84cm long. The shallows up around the northern end of the bay can hold some alright numbers of small gummies throughout the cooler months but they are very rarely targeted here.

 

Most people wouldn't expect much in the way of fish variety in southern Asia, but customers Cip and Jo have just returned from a successful trip there. The boys were in Malaysia where they got their fishing fix and a local fishing park. The boys fished from the pontoons for larger fish like redtail catfish and barramundi, and in small boats in the ponds for the predatory fish like snakehead and bass.


Cip with a lovely redtail catfish caught at the park.


Jo with one of the most prized fish in southeast Asia, the Toman or Snakehead.

Snakehead and Peacock bass were the order of the day boat fishing the ponds. Both are aggressive predators ready to smash most lures that cross their path. Many Australian lures can be successful on these fish and the use of multi-piece travel rods now makes a trip abroad like this very easy.

 


The squid fishing continues to be excellent in Port Phillip bay and should stay pretty good over the Easter break. Many locations have been producing good numbers of squid all along the shoreline of the bay, with the southern peninsula the standout. Customer Amedea has been getting amongst the squid over the last few weeks and has been catching some crackers from around Sorrento.


Some more squid and cuttlefish from Amedea. Size 3.0 Yamashita jigs have been the most consistent producers down here, with rainbow foil a favourite.


Customer Tony has been catching heaps of squid nearby also. The piers at Blairgowrie and Rye haven't been too bad if you can find a spot, along with Mount Martha rocks. Tony has been catching most of his squid on a Yamashita '490 glow' jig in size 3.0. The 490 glow emits a stronger luminescence that the calamari can hone in on easier in overcast conditions or at night time.

Mornington pier has still been producing squid for anglers still fishing it. The crowds have died off a bit but over the Easter weekend they should pick up again, especially with some decent weather forecast. If you're fishing the pier, the smaller 1.8 size jigs have still been the go - or try a size 3.0 from the rockwall if you're looking for a bigger squid.


Back up the top end of the bay, the Autumn run of squid are starting to make their way up. The piers around Brighton and Beaumaris should start seeing a few more caught as the water temperature starts to drop off. Customer Ronaldo caught some squid including this ripper from around Black Rock just recently. A pink size 3.5 was the hot jig on the night.

 

Eildon pondage has been fishing well for trout again, with plenty of fish to keep anglers of all skill levels happy. With some nice weather forecast it is a good option to take the kids and get them hooked on fishing over the Easter break. Bank fishing is easy at the pondage with many spots an easy few metres from the car, which helps everyone. The hot baits at the moment are the 'trout dough and various coloured powerbait formulas. Don't forget the trout pellet berley though or else your pretty much serving up a pie without sauce!


Customer/semi local fishing identity Zoran with just a few of his recent fish from Eildon pondage. Zoran has been fishing both trout dough and powerbait, with bites swining towards the dough one day and then powerbait the next. Zoran has also been fishing longer, super soft tipped rods and light mono to detect any of the subtle bites that the bigger fish are generally known for.


Customer Greg also fished the pondage recently with mate Mark, where they had some success on powerbait. This nice brown was 1 of 20 fish caught on the day, with the most success had on pink coloured powerbait.

 

 


The recent rain has really kicked the local estuaries into gear around Melbourne. The freshwater influx has dirtied up a lot of the rivers and creeks and washed food to kick the food chain along. 

Customer Tinh has found that the bream have been feeding up heavily during rougher weather and rain.Tinh has been fishing some of the piers like Frankston and Mordialloc where the bream have feed foraging around the pylons. He has also found that freshwater yabbies have been the most successful bait for him, especially when fished on a Gamakatsu 'C10U' hook.


Around Patterson river things have started heating up. Customer Tony has found that the bream have been more active since the rain, with the fish less finicky and more inclined to bite on a variety of baits. The best baits have still been small freshwater yabbies, with Tony's last session getting him 4 very nice fish from about 8am onward. Tony also mentioned that the main river was very dirty but a bit cleaner inside the canal system. 

With all the rain that has made it's way into the local estuaries, many keen anglers are thinking one thing; Mulloway. The Autumn rainfall can see these fish pop up from seemingly nowhere and go on the chew, but it is really the concentrations of mullet schools that these fish follow. The increase of freshwater in the estuaries can condense the baitfish and give the mulloway an easy feed.

Customer Peter reports of some activity around the local mulloway haunts, with this 110cm fish caught just a few days ago. Peter has been after a metre mulloway for some time, and was stoked with this fish, which was released. The fish took freshly caught Mornington squid. 

 

The hot land based squid action continues again this week, with plenty of anglers going home happy with fresh baits or a feed of tasty calamari. While Mornington has again been firing (and busy) most of the other piers and land based locations along the southern end of Port Phillip bay have been doing well.

Customer Amedea has just recently taken up squid fishing, and fishing in general and already she is nailing some serious squid! Amedea has been fishing the southern peninsula from Blairgowrie through to Portsea and has been catching quality squid like these. She has really been liking the Yamashita jigs in size 3.0 in natural patterns and has found that the really aggressive jigging method is getting the interest of any squid nearby.


In the same areas along the peninsula customer Tony has been giving the squid a hiding. Tony has been getting his bag or close to every session, and is now seriously considering retiring from squid fishing! Tony has been hopping his way along the piers to find a quieter spot to work, with early mornings being his preferred times.


Two of Tony's more successful jigs this week, in size 2.0 and also 3.0 - in natural silver pink, and full 490/UV glow.


Around Mornington the numbers of squid have continued to keep anglers flocking here, although they have slowed off a touch over the weeks. Customers Jim and Nati both fished from the pier with their sons during the week where the boys caught some nice squid. Small size 1.8 jigs in brighter colours were the best performers for the boys.


Plenty of excellent bait and table sized squid still on offer. Most of the pier is just about stained black from all the ink!


Customer Mike Z has been doing well on the pier also, with his preferred time later during the night. Mike has been using a Shimano 'Squirt Stick' rod, and has found the soft, parabolic taper perfect in keeping even the smallest squid hooked. Mike has been catching most of his squid using small 1.8 size jigs from Daiwa and Yamashita.


Staff members Dylan and Don stopped at Mornington pier for about an hour over the weekend to see how it was looking, and there were plenty of squid still getting caught. The guys caught half a dozen each in a short time, on jigs ranging in size from 1.8 - 2.5. The guys noticed a lot of people crowding certain sections of the pier which leaves plenty of open gaps to fish in, and so as you're a proficient caster you will generally pull squid out of the smallest gaps - because most people will not fish in them.

Dylan then drove further down the peninsula to check some of the other piers and collect the rest of his bag from Blairgowrie and Sorrento piers using size 3.0 490 glow Yamashita jigs.

 


The local estuaries are running quite clear at the moment and the bream fishing has been a little bit quiet, but as always the rewards are there for the anglers with a bait or lure in the water. Speaking of lures, customer Ange has really nutted out some of the local creek fish, with chunky bream to 42cm taking small shrimp imitation soft plastics. Ange has found that for these lures to work effectively they must be rigged almost unweighted and left to sink as natural as possible along any likely looking structure. 


Over the next few weeks we should find the bream activity to increase if we get some decent rain, as the influx of freshwater will flush more food into the systems and give the fish some cover from predators. The Patterson and Yarra rivers will fire up if this event occurs, and it may even bring some school mulloway into these systems.

 

The whiting fishing in Westernport has been slower for most anglers over the last week, with many people going donuts on them. The anglers catching KGW aren't all getting their bags, but they have been noticing better average size on the ones around. The deeper marks and channels have been worth a fish as these spots are normally where you have a good chance at finding some proper 'kidney slappers'. Just remember to get yourself organized as you won't get a massive bite window on these fish once the tide starts to get going in the deep. Preparation is the key.

Mario and John however did well just days ago on this bag of fish from the top end of Westernport. The usual constant small moves and changing baits over frequently was the key to stacking a bag together.


Customers Damien and Benny also got into some nice sized fish around Tankerton just recently. The boys found the fish actively feeding in 5m of water, and fresh squid was the gun bait on them. The larger fish didn't muck about when biting either, with a couple of them gut hooked on 'C10U' style fine gauge hooks.

 

Customer Steve had been stocking up slowly over the last few weeks for a trip up north, and now is currently catching up in the Northern Territory. Steve has been doing well on a variety of species fishing out from King Ash bay in both the local creeks and Arafura Sea. Steve said the barra fishing had been tough but fish like this 80cm specimen have been tricked on shallow running hardbodied lures twitched around feeder creeks during the run out tides.

Steve also mentioned the variety of species he has been catching including barramundi, blue salmon, black jewfish, golden trevally, queenfish and also mudcrabs.


Steve found that one of the best fights he has had came from this big queenfish while up north. Steve said that the 'queenie' went crazy and took a live grunter fished in a deeper hole in the river.


Steve has also found out how many sharks are present in northern waters. Steve has been losing a few hooked fish to large whalers, with this nice black jewfish just one of the casualties. The head of this jewie alone was around 3kg, so it wouldv'e been a nice fish. Steve did get some revenge on the sharks however, with this large reef shark kept to feed enough of the locals back at the ramp. The shark took a pilchard rigged on gang hooks in 4m of water and proceeded to flip and jump out of the water during the fight. 

 

Again this week there have been plenty of solid pinkies and larger snapper being caught out along the Mornington peninsula. The numbers of fish have been holding from Mornington down to Mt Martha spoil ground. Many of the fish have been 30 - 50cm with enough larger fish to 5kg in the mix to angler snapper angler happy. The more consistent producing baits have been pilchard and squid but enough fish have also taken fresh yakka, so it is worth having them on board also.


James Rogers from Unreel Fishing Charters has been putting customers onto number of pinkies and handfuls of larger fish, with the rougher southwest blows really bringing the larger fish onto the chew. The deeper water from 20 - 22m has been the area that most of the fish have been holding. James and his son have also been getting decent pinkies on soft plastics while at anchor, with 'nuclear chicken' and bright UV colours getting the fishes attention.


Customer Peter has also been experiencing good sessions on the pinkies down the bottom of the peninsula. Peter has been doing well on pinkies to 40cm in 10m of water along some of the southern channel drop offs. Pilchard has been the most effective bait for him, with some large squid coming up from the depths also. The squid have also turned into excellent bait for the pinkies when left to dangle enticingly from a small circle hook.