While the run of 'barrels' has slowed off compared to weeks ago, the bluefin action continues along the west coast. There have been fishing found as close as Barwon Heads and Torquay but most of the action is happening down at Portland. James from Unreel Fishing Charters has been catching plenty of school fish for customers out from Portland and Port Fairy. Most of the fish have been in the 5 - 13kg mark, with small weighed skirts doing most of the damage.


Customers Benny and Damien are down fishing Portland at present and report that the fish are spread out, from 60m through to the edge of the shelf. While the size of the fish is generally on the smaller side at the moment some of the boys have managed 5 way hook ups on schoolies around 7kg. A range of skirts and hard bodies have both been working, with Xrap 30's and JB dingos getting in on the action in most 'Portland' colours.

 


Squid reports have been pretty good from most of the piers locally lately, even though some locations have a bit of dirty water flowing in. The Mornington Peninsula as always is the best bet for consistency - whether you're fishing off the rocks or one of the piers.


Port Phillip has still been fishing ok, as staff member Dylan found out over the weekend. Fishing dirty water not far from the city amongst other anglers Dylan caught 3 nice squid in under half an hour and then left before another rain band came through. Size 2.5 jigs were the best performers with Yamashita's newer 'Live search 490 glow' models proving very effective compared to other anglers offerings nearby. Customer Lilong also fished the Sandringham area for squid along with Sorrento for a good bag. Lilong found that Yamashitas were the most productive, in both Aussie limited colours and also PyonPyon search models. Among the decent squid a couple of cuttlefish were also caught which was a bonus.


Staff member Don has been fishing the peninsula with both Mornington and Stony Point the favoured locations. Don has been averaging a couple every session with most around half a kilo. Size 2.5 and 3.5 jigs have both been used depending on current, with red foil and natural brown/green patterns working well. Customer Angelo has been down at Flinders recently fishing the afternoons and catching some nice squid. The squid recently haven't been as big as Flinders standards but still quality, around kilo. Size 3.5 Clicks and Owner jigs have been doing the damage in a variety of colours.

 

 


The big bream are starting to fire up with this weather. The local rivers such as Patterson and Yarra have been seeing more solid fish caught since the rain has started up, with things expected to get better as it gets colder. This time of the year is more about quality over quantity which fish over a kilo expected. Customer Ryan has been fishing the Yarra and Maribyrnong rivers to land some nice to around 35cm on plastics. Ryan has been finding the fish holding tight into the bankside structure so weedless rigging of the plastics has been the most effective way of getting to them.


Out in Gippsland the big bream are starting to fire as customer Justin has been experiencing. Justin and brother Braydon have been fishing the three main rivers and have been landing some nice fish on all manner of lures. The Tambo and Nicholson have been producing the most fish with some big bream well over 40cm in length hanging about. The best bite on these fish has been with small grubs like Zman and Bungy Baits, along with small sinking hardbodies and stickbaits. These lures fish well when let sink slowly along the bank edge or structure, and are worked back with a series of slow hops.

 


The good thing about fishing is that you can catch something no matter where you go that has water! A few customers have been out and about lately and catching while on holiday which is good to see. Young gun Harry was on holiday with the family in Tasmania and just had to have a fish. Fishing from one of the jetties in Hobart Harry caught a chunky bluethroat wrasse. Harry landed the solid fish on squid, which gave him a good workout on light gear.


In the states' East customer Manny has been tangling with things with teeth. Manny has been out around Mallacooota with family and has done some fishing offshore. Among the tiger flathead and snapper caught bottom bashing a hook up was had short lived, bitten off. Manny saw the culprit near the surface and cast a bait rigged on wire out and  soon enough the fish was back on. A feisty mako shark of around 30kg was brought up to the boat and the culprit was caught.


Over the other side of the globe customer Jordan has been on honeymoon in Japan. While not a fishing trip, Jordan still managed to sneak in some fishing with a guide on famous Lake Biwa. Lake Biwa is known as the 'testing ground' for many successful lures that eventually make their way to us and is full of largemouth bass. Jordan fished for the bass on a quiet day with estimated at more than 500 boats fishing one area! Finesse soft plastic techniques will now have here were the go on the day, with wacky and texas rigged plastics proving successful on a slow day. Catching fish is the name of the name in Japan, and their hard work results in some techniques that make our fishing easier!


 


The squid fishing locally has been excellent even with some rain falling. The more rain will send things a bit quiet but there are still squid available for the weekend angler. The Mornington Peninsula has been the place to start looking, with Mornington a good first choice. The inside of the harbour has been fishing well for smaller squid if you're using smaller jigs. Staff member Don has been fishing the small pier and inside of the harbour to land a few smaller squid on size 2.5 jigs. 2.5 has been the most successful size lately, as they are able to be fished deeper and cast further to reach the squid hanging back.

Customer Ryan has also caught some squid from Mornington pier, from the bay side of the pier and also on the rocks. Ryan has been finding size 2.5 jigs have also been the best balance of small profile but castability. Ryan also found some better sized squid down at Rye pier and Blairgowrie yacht squadron during the week, with light green coloured jigs the standout.


Over in Westernport the squid fishing around the southern end has been good. The region from Stony Point to Flinders has been excellent fot good numbers of squid and also much better size as the cooler water pushes in. Customer Peter fished Flinders with his father where they managed a bag of nice squid. Size 3.5 jigs were the go with red foil and green cloth patterns resembling the large shrimp and grass whiting in the thick weed beds. Around the same area customer John got into some squid to around a kilo in weight, by fishing the deeper water. John found that the Yakamito 'Abyss' jigs were getting down to the strike zone and holding there long enough to get a bite from the bigger squid. Natural pilchard and mackerel patterns were the best colours with the deeper 12m depth of water holding these baitfish.

 


The bream fishing has really heated up as Autumn has kicked along. Traditionally Autumn is a great time to be out chasing bream whether it's local or down the road. The bream fishing throughout Gippsland has been good, as many of the estuaries that have been shut over the warmer months are now open and have some fresh water pushing down them, and tides moving the bait around and firing the fishing up. Staff member Chris fished out in Gippsland with mates and found that the bream were aggressive towards baitfish pattern hardbodies around the weedbeds.


The Gippsland lakes are starting to produce some large bream as the weather cools down. with the three big rivers all producing fish. The recent rain has triggered some bigger fish to start schooling for their spawning movements later during winter. Customers Luke and Luke fished the rivers recently and found some solid bream to 44cm in the Tambo. The boys found that the early morning bite was the most productive fishing, and the addition of stealth was what got the bite over the line. The boys moved into position by the use of boat paddles as to not spook the fish.


Meanwhile back in the local rivers the bream have also been fishing pretty well. The Patterson river is always a good spot to tackle a decent bream, as customer Ange has been doing. Ange has been lure casting from the shore during both the day and at night, and he has been catching fish to around 35cm. Lately small deep running crankbaits have been the most effective for him, as they bump along the bottom to entice a bite. Staff member George has also been down at Patto and has been landing fish to similar size. George has been fishing a variety of baits and has found baits like pipi, squid, and small strip baits of fish have been working when fished on very light leader and sinkers. The fish have been biting well into the night, with some as late as 11pm.


The Werribee river has produced some nice fish for anglers fishing with small freshwater yabbies. Customer Glenn from the Keysborough Angling Club weighed in two nice fish recently fishing the lower section of the river. Both of Glenn's fish were in the mid 30cm size range. Baits of shrimp have also been effective when fished around the reed edges.


The Yarra river has also been fishing well for bream. Customer Ryan has been enjoying some good sessions on the fish while fishing land based. While the water clarity was excellent the fishing was tough, with picky fish cautiously rejecting lures if they weren't sure of them. Ryan has managed some nice fish to just under 40cm on small shrimp imitations. Small stickbaits and sinking hardbodies that imitate the local shrimp have been the best when let sink slowly around the pylons and pontoons. Staff member Dylan has also been catching bream to just under a kilo in the Yarra recently. Dylan has been fishing small baitfish profiled soft plastics around the retaining walls and concrete pylons in the river. The Megabass Hazedong shads have been excellent when fished on a 1/12th jig and slowly twitched very close to the structure.



 


While there hasn't been many anglers chasing them, the snapper continue out wide from Mornington and Mount Martha. When weather permits an early morning bite has been worth chasing from these fish, which have been averaging around 3kg. Customer Mark got out and had a crack at the fish recently and found some rippers to around 5kg. That first light bite was the go, out in depths of 20 - 22m off Mount Martha. Soft baits of pilchard and squid have been the go but a few anglers have also done well with whiting heads fished off snatcher style rigs.


Fishing out from the mussel farm off Mornington customer Lilong and mates managed a good haul of pinkies and school sized fish on soft plastics. Lilong was fishing jerkshad and worm style plastics, alternating between 1/8 and 1/4oz jigheads to suit the plastic and the depth. Bright UV colours in the worm patterns were excellent while natural whitebait and baitfish colours suited the jerkshads perfectly and got eaten on the drop most of the time. Lilong was using scent on his plastics with the Pro Cure garlic his chosen one.


While the depths of Mornington have been the consistent area for the fish, there have been plenty of smaler school sized fish roaming about in close. Customers Pete and Howard were fishing down in the Patto near the mouth when they landed pinkies to 57cm. Calm conditions and pilchard baits were the go, with a ravenous run of fish caught in the river and quite a few hanging around the artificial reef out from the river mouth.

 


The gummies have been going off! If you're after some light tackle sport and a feed of fresh flake then now is the time to be amongst them. Both bays have been producing nice fish, and the offshore action has also been great.


Customers Johnny and Thao have had a few good sessions throughout the western entrance of Westernport with some solid sharks to around the 20kg mark, and a good amount of nice table fish to 13kg or so. Chunk baits of freshly caught salmon and yakka have been the goods when fished on heavy gauge 9/0 in-line circle hooks and 80lb leader. Fishing the bigger tides and deeper channel edges has required lead to 30oz and suitable rods coupled with fine diameter braid to help hold bottom.


Just outside the entrance the gummy fishing has been outstanding, with customers Christian and Jason catching some good fish. Fishing either behind Phillip Island or Cape Schank around the 20-25m line and deeper out between 40-50m has been the go especially when conditions along for a good drift. Finding small isolated patches of reef around these areas can be an excellent way of location both the gummies and suitable bait. The boys have been fishing fresh wrasse and slimies on similar westernport gear but without the needed extra lead. Paternoster rigs can be successful offshore also and they provide extra movement of the baits when held just off the bottom.


If venturing offshore or towards the entrance isn't your thing the gummy fishing has been good further up the bay. Customers Jamie and Brad landed 3 nice fish in a recent session while fishing out from Stony Point. The guys were sitting along a nice channel drop and using freshly caught baits of yakka. Finding a suitable drop to intercept the gummies is the key to prime location, and catching your own fresh bait helps immensely.


The southern end of Port Phillip has been excellent for large gummies also, with the south channel being the main hunting grounds. Customer Josh has been out over the past week and has been landing some ripper fish to around 20kg. Fishing the south channel itself with freshly caught squid and salmon has been the undoing of these fish. Fresh trevally have also been excellent when they have been around.

 


If you're keen on snapper then you should be fishing the southern end of the bay at present. The fish continue to bite from Mornington down to the start of the south channel. The common size of these fish at the moment is around a couple of kilos with fish to 6kg a proper chance, and a good mix of pinkies amongst the bite. Fishing the deeper water from 19 - 22m has been the area, with there no real hot spots just a keen eye on your sounder and a good amount of cubed pilchard or pellet berley. Being at your spot before first light with a trail of berley and baits in the water is a must.


James from Unreel Fishing Charters has been putting customers on to some lovely fish around the Mt Eliza over the past week, with both pinkies and school snapper on the go. James has been working the deeper water from 19m and wider for the larger fish, while the inshore reef and nearby water has been producing heaps of smaller pinkies and school fish to 1kg or so. Pilchard and squid have both been good baits.


Further up the bay there have been plenty of pinkies hovering about the reef points, and large patches of fish moving around the open mud and sand. Between Mordialloc and Carrum there have been plenty of smaller sized pinkies to around 35cm. Customer Simon fished out from Carrum in 17m on the mud where he brought home a good score of size pinkies. Squid and small silver whiting were the go to baits.

 


The squid fishing ash been consistent, and will only get better especially for the larger models as the weather gets colder. Both bays have been fishing well as they have had clear water conditions, even with the recent rain. This weekend's weather should really give some good squid fishing with no rainfall and clear sunny conditions. Customer Thao has been catching some quality calamari for the table and for fresh baits out in Westernport. Thao has been concentrating around the grassbeds near Tortoise Head and Tankerton with some good size squid finding the net. Size 3.0 jigs in natural yakka and also UV white and orange have been the best.


Out from Stoney Point customer Jamie and mates caught good numbers of squid fishing size 3.5 jigs along the bank drop offs. Fishing during the faster stage of the tide the 3.5's were crucial when in only 3m of water, as they stayed in the kill zone for long enough. UV white jigs worked when the cloud cover came through and during sunshine the red foil did better.


Mornington pier and rocks have still been producing good numbers squid for patient and persistent anglers. Fishing size 1.8 jigs has been fine when fishing the inside of the harbour or small pier, while the outside edge of the main pier and rocks are better approached with 2.5 size jigs. Red foils have been good around first or last light, with UV whites and aggressive colours like pinks and oranges have been excellent during sunlight hours.

Further north in the bay the region between Brighton and Black Rock has started producing more squid as the water cools off. Customer Peter fished from the rocks near Brighton recently to land a bag of nice sized squid. The aggressive viper red foil did the damage when their was a small amount of sunlight. UV pinks and also natural grass whiting patterns are very consistent around this region also.