Snapper reports have been pretty good considering it's late June. The snapper in the bay have fired up somewhat since Melbourne copped some ugly weather a little while back, so if you're a snapper freak then now's just as good a time as any to go out and try pin a good sized fish. The best part is that the snapper action hasn't been too confined to any certain areas of the bay; there have been fish caught from Geelong to Port Melbourne and Brighton to Mount Martha. Customer Vic made use of some ugly weather earlier in the week and perched himself along the rocks down towards Mornington. Vic was targeting snapper and lost a couple of fish, but the fish that he did land was a beast. Fishing with a whole pillie on 60lb leader Vic managed to land a thumping fish of 10.2kg - not bad for landbased in June hey...meanwhile across near Williamstown in only 8m of water customer Reece caught this nice 7kg fish on pilchard while drifting along a small dropoff with flatties in mind. That's the shoreline and city in the background.

Along pretty much every reef patch in the bay the pinkies have been in plague proportions. While there have been heaps of fish to attack a bait, a lot of them have been on the small side. A lot of the fish have been around the 30cm size, with a few bigger models mixed in. Larger baits and bigger hooks are a good idea if you're after a few bigger fish for the table. Soft plastics are a good option when chasing pinkies, and brands like Zman are excellent when the smaller fish are chewing other plastics to bits. If you're lucky you might even get some by-catch like customer Shane did. Shane was fishing out around Mordi with a 4" plastic when he landed a rare catch. This strange fish is an Australian Angel shark, which can reach around 1.5m in length.

For the squidding enthusiasts, the calmer weather we have had has been perfect for hitting some of the piers and rock ledges in search of a few. The southern end of the bay has been the best recently, especially along Mornington, Blairgowrie and Portsea. Staff member Don headed down to Portsea pier during the week and found some nice squid and cuttlefish. Don found that size 3.5 Yakamito's in gold foil were the best on this occasion, with all squid and cuttlefish caught on similar jigs. Customer Ryan has also been catching a few squid from the rocks around Mornington recently. Ryan has had to work hard and hop around in search of a few but he has been getting good numbers in the end. Size 3.0 and 3.5 Gancraft and Yamashita jigs have been the best, with green/gold tones/grass whiting patterns working the best. Most of Ryan's squid have been in the 300g size lately. 

 

 

Westernport Bay has started picking up for gummy reports which is normally the case over the warmer months of the year. This time of year is also good for larger toothy sharks like school sharks and various whalers and threshers. Customer Tim from Yaringa Fishing Club sent in a report from the weekend where he landed a nice size bronzie from the top end of the port. Tim was fishing out from Lysaughts when he hooked the shark, and managed to land it solo. The shark weighed 22.9kg and a fresh garfish head early Saturday morning.

On the gummy front, there have been a few nice fish starting to get caught throughout the western entrance, from Flinders bank up to Stony Point. A fair percentage of the larger gummies moving into the port are breeding females and if they are in pup there no point killing them, as the smaller males provide better table fare and are much more common.

 

Customer Mark managed to land a ripper female gummy landbased just recently and he sent a photo of it in. Mark was fishing from the shore near Point Leo and targeting a large gummy when he landed this fish of around 18kg.

 

 

Westernport's gummies have been playing ball over the last few weeks for anglers, with lots of good table sized sharks coming aboard. Customers aboard Unreel Fishing Charters have been having a ball on gummies to 8kg all throughout the port. Baits of fresh trevally and yakka have been the most productive lately.

Customer John fished out from Hastings in search of a few gummies just recently where he landed some nice fish along the channel edge in 13m. John caught gummies to 10kg using rings of freshly caught squid on a 5/0 circle hook, with the last 2 hours of the run out tide being the most productive.

Customer Andrew was fishing out from Corinella recently in search of a few table sized gummies when he landed this ripper. This female shark was heavy full of pups and released after a quick photo. Freshly caught squid head was the effective bait.

 

Port Phillip is starting to see a few boats out searching for early season snapper. From lots of reports there are good numbers of fish starting to school up from 14m through to 21m of water. Most of the early season fish will hold on structure for a while, but still take a little bit to bite well. There have also been anglers landing a few of these early season fish, like customer Danny. Danny found a patch of nice fish marked up off Frankston in around 19m of water. After waiting for a while a few fish turned on, and Danny managed to land a couple in the 5kg range on squid heads. 

Customers Ben and Jacob headed out from Carrum to look around for a few snapper. While they did find some fish, the schools were bunched up tight 'christmas tree' style - which normally indicates less active fish. While the did put baits down they ended up with a few smaller pinkies, flatties and a 6ft sevengill shark - an indication that the water temperature is still quite cold. 

 

While the shark fishing reports are normally quiet during the winter months, there is still the odd one around to be caught. Most anglers turn their attention towards other fish species but there are still enough sharks to be caught, especially out around the tuna schools in the state's West.

Customer Paul recently sent us a photo of a chunky mako that he caught fishing out from Port Welshpool.

Paul was fishing around 20km out from the Welshpool entrance for sharks when this monster took one of his baits of fresh salmon. 

After a 2 hour fight on 15kg tackle the shark was finally restrained next to the boat. The fish measured 2.9m long and weighed 230kg. Paul said that during the fight it jumped 4 times, and another mako of around 100kg jumped a few times next to Paul's hooked fish. 

On the tuna front there have still been enough fish hanging around Portland and Port Fairy for anglers to have some fun with.

James from Unreel Fishing Charters has still been having fun with the school tuna out of Portland, with skirts doing the best job on his recent outings. James has had his cousin onboard earlier in the week, with plenty of tuna to keep everyone happy, along with a few nice dolphinfish. West of Cape Nelson has been the better area for the dolphinfish and bluefin. 

If you're going to hit the bluefin up before the season draws to a close, make sure you've got a few of these specials! Rapala's 4 brand new colours in the XRAP30 range - sailfish, hot pink, wahoo and redhead. All of these colours are UV enhanced to stand out, and come pre-rigged with single hooks straight out of the packet, ready to catch fish!  

We're also running a super special for anglers wanting a good quality tuna/shark outfit at an awesome price; a Shimano Tyrnos 50 single speed, Penn Carnage 24kg rollertip rod and 2 Pakula Mosquitos all for just $279! 

If you're in need of another tuna rod, we're also doing a crazy special on Penn Carnage 15kg RT's at just $72, and Shimano Backbone 15kg RT's for only $68! - tuna rods for the price of a snapper rod!

 

Westernport Bay has been fishing reasonably well for most species recently with squid, whiting, gummies and snapper all on the cards for anglers putting in the time. While the water temp has dropped off towards it's winter temperature most of these species can still be caught. Although there is a bit of groundwork needed, some quality snapper can be caught around the top of the port and also in the Corinella region. Customer Andrew fished around Corinella with a mate earlier in the week to land some nice reds to around 5kg. Andrew found baits of freshly caught squid and yakka to be the most effective. 

King George whiting are still about in reasonable numbers in most of the normal areas, however the size class of fish is definitely better than during the summer months. Customer Rob has been having sessions where fish from 40 - 46cm are fairly common, with the odd thumper getting close to 50cm. Tyabb bank, Tankerton and around Shoreham have been areas worth a shot. Baits of squid and pipi are still best.

Squid reports from the port have been good, as this time of year is normally a good time to target them. Some larger models have been caught up on Tyabb and Quail banks, along with the usual large specimens from around Flinders. Customer Scott has been doing well on the squid up along Quail bank over the last week, with the average size being about 20cm hood length. The best one he has landed recently measured 42cm. Scott favours the Keimura jigs from Shimano, with colour 14T his number 1. 

Gummies and other toothy sharks like seven gill sharks have still been good all around the port, with plenty of table sized gummies in the 4ft mark around. Customer Lee fished with his mates during the week on the gummies where they also managed to wrangle a good sized sevengiller up to the boat. Customer Zoran also got out and got his bag of 2 gummies around the middle spit during the week using yakka and trevally. Most of the known areas are fishing well for gummies, with fresh baits of squid, salmon, yakka, trevally or couta all working well. 

 

For all the anglers starting to think Southern bluefin tuna, the fish have not long turned up at Portland. While the fish are being caught, it's not a walk in the park for most anglers. Most of the bluefin are being caught fairly wide of Portland itself; with the 400 - 500m depth area inside the edge of the shelf and the outside of the 'horseshoe' producing the fish. For the novice tuna fisherman these areas are a long run out. A few school fish have been caught in closer around the 150m depth but generally most are out wide at the moment. Amongst the bluefin there have also been some nice albacore caught as well which is typical for early in the season. 

Customer Heipp fished out from Portland over the weekend where the fishing was a bit tough, but he still managed to land the one bluefin at around 20kg. Heipp lost two more fish out around the horseshoe area, with 8 inch skirts in blues and pinks getting the hits. 

James fro Unreel Fishing Charters has also been fishing around the Portland and Port Fairy area and while he hasn't had the weather to get right out wide for the tuna, he has been getting some decent sharks for his customers. James has caught mako and blue sharks out in the 300m area, with some decent sharks over 100kg hanging around. Most of the sharks landed have been in the 40 - 70kg size which have given his customers some real excitement.  

 

Westernport Bay has been worth the trip for anglers after a feed of fresh flake. Most regions of the port have been producing these grey speedsters, with some larger fish getting caught from around Sandy Point south towards the western entrance. Staff member Harley has put in a couple of trips out towards the entrance in search of gummies during the week, with some nice table sized sharks caught. The larger fish have been around the 11kg mark - with baits of salmon being the most successful during both tides.    

There has also been some bycatch in the area for Harley including sevengill sharks to around 50kg, along with gurnard and flathead. Customer David also went out in search of a few gummies a bit further east towards Corinella. Using rings of freshly caught squid, David and Bill caught gummies to around 5kg fishing along a channel edge. The guys also managed some nice flathead, with the best one measuring 55cm long and caught on the same bait.

 

 

The offshore scene at the minute has been good, with anglers targeting kingfish and sharks. Although some anglers are struggling to find a mako, the area between Cape Schank and Kilcunda has been producing over the last week; with some of the larger fish weighing over 100kg. 

Customer Haldun came in to the store and after some advice on gear selection he was stocked up and on his way. His first session outside was a good way to start, with an estimated 100kg mako coming aboard. Haldun fished with his family out from Kilcunda in around 50m of water. Using a Shimano Tiagra and Nitro Tuna Winch combo along with a newly purchased Hookem flying gaff, the big fish was subdued. Successful bait was a half striped tuna. 

On the kingfish front, there have been fish caught in roughly the same area as where most of the makos have come from; Cape Schank, Seal Rock and Cape Woolamai. Most anglers connecting to the kingies are still doing so trolling lures or live yakkas and slimies. 



 

James from Unreel Fishing Charters has had some more good whiting fishing in the top of the Port. Customers aboard the boat have experienced some good catches of whiting along areas such as Tyabb bank, the middle spit and just outside the Hastings channel. Most of the whiting have been preferring baits of mussel, with pipi accounting for a few as well.

On the toothies, there have been lot of Sevengill sharks caught by anglers chasing gummies and school shark in the Port. Many of these gillers have been in the 100+kg range and can be a handful on lighter gear - if they don't bite you off first. Jeff Chique from the Noble Park Football Social Anglers Club caught this 200kg giller out in the Port just recently as by-catch. For the anglers interested in targeting anything with teeth, including makos offshore we have a few new bait and berley products that will be of interest - frozen whole salmon, twin pack tuna, 8kg salmon berley blocks and 1 litre bottles of pilchard oil. All newly delivered and ready for the weekend chasing a toothy or two!