While most people assume that shore based fishing isn't any good around the bays, there's been a lot of variety caught at the moment. There are many piers, rockwalls and beaches around both bays where you can catch some fish - the trick is to try and target a particular species. While this can sometimes be fruitless (that's why it's called fishing and not catching) you will generally do better if you set yourself up in search of a particular fish, instead of setting up for everything and most likely not catching much.


Around most of the piers in southern Port Phillip and Westernport there have been good numbers of yakkas. While they turn up and disappear pretty quickly, they should hang around for a while now as the reports have only recently hotted up. Portsea, Blairgowrie, Sorrento and Flinders are all worth a shot. Customer Angelo fished from Flinders pier during the week and while the squid were quiet for him, the mackerel made up for it. Small pieces of prawn fished on light gauge hooks off a paternoster rig were the go for him. Many anglers have also been catching good numbers of mackerel fishing under a float, as they tend to move about mid-water a lot. A fine grit, coarse-like berley mix is deadly when these fish are around, as it will keep the school actively feeding in your area. They can also be caught using small soft plastics fished on light weight and fine gauge jigheads.


While not normally known for whiting, fished from the shores of Port Phillip can produce some nice fish. Staff member Dylan has seen some good sized fish around Brighton and Black Rock during the week while swimming - with no one fishing for them. Fishing after dark around the top of the tide can be the most productive time, especially after a warm day. Customer Ange fished from the shore around Sandringham during the week where he caught some nice fish. Ange also found a patch of smaller pinkies, which came from a nearby reef to hammer his baits.

If you are chasing the whiting, try and target areas of sand with small patches of eelgrass or light reef nearby, and cast your baits around the edge of this structure, as the whiting will frequently patrol the edges looking for food. If it's pinkies your after, areas of heavier reef with broken sand patches are more productive, especially around last light. There are plenty of areas like around Brighton, Black Rock, Frankston and Mornington.


On the squid scene, things have been good. The warm afternoons have been good for squidding from the beaches and rocks, with Blairgowrie, Mornington and Mt Martha all producing. Customer Harry got out and fished from the beaches around Mt Martha and Mt Eliza, where he caught 8 nice squid using the Yakamito 'fluoro lemon' jig.


Around the same sort of ground off Mt Martha, customer Daniels and Jake fished in close to the shore in their kayak. A nice calm 5:30am start meant they caught prospect around the shallows without much chop and boat wake. The guys ended up with 9 squid in a few hours, on a variety of jigs in both size 2.5 and 3.0. Orange, green and purple colours worked on the day. Staff member Dylan fished in a similar area during the week to land 9 squid on size 2.5 Yamashita and Shimano jigs, with UV based blacks and pinks the standouts.

 


While normally slipping under the radar amongst all the other fishing to be done over the summer months, there have been some ripper gars about. While a lot of anglers overlook them as a target, the beauty of them is they can be caught land based or boat. Most of the shallow inshore areas of both bays and all of our other estuaries will hold gars, it's just a matter of getting numbers of them to hang around. A bit of berley normally gets them going and they are a brilliant eating fish to add to the day's bag.

Pier fishing for gars in the bay has been good around Brighton, Sandringham, Beaumaris, Frankston and Dromana, along with Stony point pier in Westernport. Gawaine Blake has been catching some real gars around Stony Point while out near the whiting grounds.


Don't be fooled, gars CAN be very tricky to catch consistently and the correct tackle and technique will soon separate the full buckets from the empty ones. Delicately balanced and weighted floats with mid length shank hooks are some of the tackle 'must-haves' but matching hook to bait selection and the correct consistency berley mixture is also vital. 


Customer Tim has been getting some good gars from Frankston pier recently. Tim used both maggots and silverfish in conjunction with his berley mix to secure a bag.


 

Well the story the past week on the whiting front from MOST people is that they have been fairly slow. The consistent reports of inconsistent fishing have been the word, but this should improve over the next week as we pass the moon. There have been anglers putting together bags of fish from their normal marks but the standout seems to have been the larger fish coming from the deeper water around the smaller tides. The quality of the fish coming from the deeper is generally always much better, and the bonus can come in the form of snapper and gummies, as most of the reports show.

Gawaine Blake has been getting some ripper whiting from the deep water around Cowes during the week, with genuine 50cm fish hitting the deck. The first hour of run in tide has been the most productive time, with squid strips the deadly bait.


Customers Zoran and Tony have been putting together numbers of whiting, in amongst pinkies, trevally, flathead and gummies by fishing deeper water. Generally you can get away with slightly larger hook and bait sizes in the deeper water as the whiting have less time to worry about picking at the baits as there are bigger mouths lurking around.

Customer Bart has been fishing up around Hastings for the whiting and has done ok considering the slower fishing. Bart has been working his way along the middle spit and tyabb banks to catch some nice whiting on pipi, with good numbers of squid coming from the same areas, following hooked whiting up to the boat. A fresh squid tentacle or strip has also helped bag the odd whiting too.

 

 


The King George whiting have been receiving more attention over the past month or so as many anglers put away their heavier gear and go in search of these tasty and hard fighting estuary dwelling fish. While Port Phillip has been producing fish also, Westernport bay certainly holds the trophy for being the better whiting fishery. Most of the normal haunts have been producing fish, from the top end banks and channels right through to the back beaches and exposed ocean swell points.

Many anglers are pleased with the size of the whiting coming in, with many fish over 40cm a reasonably common occurrence at the moment. There have been some bigger fish above 45cm taken from the deep channel marks also, so there are plenty of areas worth targeting at the moment.

Customer Torpy got out on the whiting during the week north of Corinella where he landed fish to 47cm in length. Run out tide over a sou'westerly wind made for hard conditions but the fish bit well. Pipi and banana prawns were the best baits. 

Staff member Don fished with mate Sam earlier in the week out from Blind Bight to land fish into the low 40cm mark amongst leatherjacket, yakkas and flathead. The run out tide fished best for them along the middle spit with pipi/squid cocktail baits along with cuttlefish doing the job.

 

While a good chunk of anglers are still chasing snapper, the King George whiting have slowly been building momentum. The recent warm spell has virtually kicked them into gear proper in Westerport, while the banks aren't inundated with small school fish like they can be after Christmas. There haven't really been any 'hot spots' at present, but the top end channels and flats have been good - with the areas around Quail/Tyabb banks or Browns Reserve good places to start.

Staff member Don has been catching good numbers of fish from week to week, with a good swag of nice 40cm fish coming aboard earlier in the week. Like always, good bait presentation and moving about to stay on the fish has been key to maximizing your result without having to spend 8hrs on the water to scrape a bag of fish together. Freshly caught squid topped off with pipi has been the most productive bait.

 

Westernport's run of snapper have spread themselves out over the past week or so, with fish now being caught virtually all over the port. The north arm area from Hastings through to around Tooradin has produced many more fish over the past week, while there are still fish getting caught up around Joe's.

Customers Luke and Alex got out during the week in search of a few fish and they found some solid snapper out near Tooradin. The boys found that out of all their baits squid and yakkas were the go.


 

 


Westernport's gummy action has been consistent most of winter with school sized fish. All of the normal areas have been fishing well, with most channel edge 'highways' producing fish at the right stage of the tide. There has been plenty of salmon and trevally along the banks so using these as fresh baits are the best.

Customer Jacques fished with friend Herve last week in search of a gummy. The guys fished along the western channel edge just south of Sandy Point, and using fresh salmon they managed a nice 5kg fish. Further north around Hastings customer Justin has been catching a few similar sized gummies as well.

 

 

There have been some nice squid of offer if you're able to find a break in the average winter weather we've had recently. Both bays have been fishing well for the calamari, the only real factors worth keeping an eye on are the wind and rain. Once the banks and shallows become stirred up and slightly cloudy the squid can be a bit of a struggle, but as soon as these areas clean up they will be back on the chew. Customer Justin got a few nice ones out in Westernport just recently, with the 'nemo' coloured jigs working the best up on the shallow banks. The area around Hastings produced the goods for him. 


Port Phillip has seen it's share of nice squid as well, from the top end around Brighton right the way down to Portsea. James from Unreel Fishing Charters has been getting some large squid around Sorrento and Portsea with many over 1kg. Small but fast sinking jigs have been doing well when fished during the faster stages of the tide. Staff member Dylan fished out from Mornington during the last calm spell in search on some squid using fly gear. Armed with just one fly outfit and a handful of flies that he tied up, he found small patches of squid along the rocky drop offs just out from the shoreline. While there were no monsters caught or bag limit quantities, catching them on fly tackle proved to be a fair bit of fun in itself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whiting reports have slowly started increasing over the last number of weeks as most anglers get their fill of snapper. While the whiting fishing has been good since the end of winter, most of the schools of fish are carrying better numbers at the moment compared to the cooler months. Fish to 40cm are relatively common along the banks, with larger fish to just shy of 50cm hanging about in deeper water.

Customer Sam fishes for the whiting fairly regularly, and he has been finding the fishing quite good overall over the last month or so. Staff member Don has also found the whiting fishing quite good, with the usual small movements around an area necessary to stay on top of the school. Generally speaking, the depth areas between 2 - 5m are the best starting point, with bigger fish normally caught in anything from 10m+ of water. The areas around Redbill and Fairhaven have been good over the last week, along with far southern end of Tyabb bank. Pipi, squid, cuttlefish and red devil worm have been the baits to use, with cocktail mixtures of these baits proving more effective. 

 

 


Squid reports from both bays have been fairly consistent over the last few weeks at least, and they have been especially prominent during spells of more stable weather. With snapper season lurking, many anglers have turned their attention to bait collecting, and the humble squid is one of the best for this purpose. Many anglers have been doing well on the squid along the banks in Westernport, with the usual Tyabb/Quail areas producing a few once they have been located. Darker coloured jigs seem to be the best for these areas, as they can sometimes dirty up fairly quickly.


Customer Jamie and his brother-in-law fished out along his normal areas of the North arm in search of some squid recently, where they ended up getting into a few nice sized ones. A mixture of baited and artificial jigs were the go when fished in around 3m of water. Down towards Flinders, there have been some crackers getting caught - but typically for this area not in really good numbers. Some of the squid getting caught have however been in the 2 - 3kg mark. Most of these larger squid will be spawning around the kelpbeds in the area and caught be caught by working size 3.5 and 4.0 fast sinking jigs.  

Squid reports from Port Phillip Bay have been good, with the most consistent areas being Blairgowrie, Sorrento and Portsea. Further back up around Mornington there have also been a few caught by boat and kayak fisherman, with the area around Fisherman's Beach being one of the better locations recently. Size 3.0 jigs in red and silver foils are a good starting point in this area, as most of the ideal water is from 2 - 5m deep.


Customer Daniel tried his luck on the squid down near Blairgowrie after some advice in store regarding jig selection and outfit choice, and he was rapt in connecting to some nice squid from the breakwall. The 'Raspberry' coloured Yakamito jigs were dynamite for him in this area.