If you're after a snapper Westernport has still been the better of the options at the moment. Port Phillip's snapper are a touch less consistent at the moment - but Westernport's top end has a much better chance currently. The region from Corinella through to Hastings is all worth a look especially if you have been previously been sounding or catching fish in the area. The real 'zone' at the moment is the Lysaughts region, from Esso through to crawfish rock. Customer Damien fished the area earlier in the week and scored a nice fish of around 6.5kg on freshly caught squid.


Customer Rocky also fished the same region just recently and scored a similar sized fish. Rocky was fishing closer to eagle rock and landed a snapper of 6.5kg on a ring of recently caught squid - using a  single circle hook. This method of rigging is far superior in Westernport and handles by-catch like large gummies and rays easily, for easy release.

 

 


While snapper are mostly on the cards for Westernport's angling community - the whiting fishing has been heating up over the past few weeks. While the whiting fishing isn't crazy hot for numbers of fish, the fish that are around have been excellent quality. The north arm has been fishing well for the whiting, with good bags of fish coming from the middle spit and around tortoise head, with a few more up the top around Warneet. Staff member Don fished on the whiting over the weekend with mate Sam and scored 18 fish. The guys fished the run out tide around Warneet and caught most of their fish on fresh squid.


The big squid have been worth a look for anglers fishing the southern end of the port again this week, with some proper spring monsters getting caught. Customer Justin fished the bottom end of the port around Newhaven and just offshore and caught some solid squid to around 2.5kg in water from 3 - 10m deep. Size 3.5 jigs in red foil and grass whiting green were the most productive. Cloudy light conditions helped the rainbow base in the grass whiting patterns reflect light and attract the squid.


Across the other side of the port customer Angelo has again been catching some nice squid from Flinders pier. Angelo fished the pier earlier during the week and did and afternoon session to land 2 nice squid up to 1kg. Angelo fished a couple of different jigs for his results, with Hayabusa 'red whiting' and Yakamito 'lemon' both being successful. Angelo noticed a few more anglers fishing size 2.5 jigs to no avail - with larger jigs getting the squids attention a lot easier here. Just be sure to select your sink rates correctly as jigs that sink too fast will simply snag up in the kelp with your first couple of casts. Standard or 'slow' sink rates are perfect for Flinders pier.

 


Whiting season is apon us! While not the norm for many at the time of year, the whiting fishing has been excellent for the past 5 weeks or so. At the moment there are plenty of whiting about to be caught, and while they are still a bit of work in the cooler water the quality has been excellent - whether you're fishing in Westernport or southern Port Phillip. If you think big squid grounds - think big whiting also. Customer Thomas has been fishing around the bottom end of the middle spit and Tortoise head for fish up to 41cm. The outgoing tide has been the most productive time for him.


The region around Tortoise head has been excellent for customer John. John has fished the area for the past few weeks and has consistently found good bags of fish, especially when fishing late in the afternoons. Many of John's fish have been either side of 40cm and have been taken on pipi and mussel.


Southern Port Phillip has been excellent for whiting also. The southern end from around Rye through to Portsea and Queenscliff has been the area to target. Fishing water from 2 - 7m has been where most of the bites have been coming from. Customer Josh has been catching some good bags of fish around Rye and again just wide of Portsea pier in about 6m. Pipi and fresh squid have been the baits of choice.

Customer Aaron also fished southern Port Phillip recently around the Sorrento area and further back to Blairgowrie and landed a good haul of fish. Pipi and mussel have been the better baits, with some better size fish coming through just on or after dark. Small amounts of berley have been a good way of turning a couple of fish into a solid bag. Small size whiting nuts have been excellent berley for whiting, mixed in with a small amount of mashed pilchard or fish oil to create a small slick. Just don't over-do the berley down here and schools of salmon and trevally will overrun your whiting school.

 


While there has been some activity on the snapper front, the real 'hot' action for Port Phillip is still around 2 weeks off. Water temperature and rainfall at this time of year play a crucial part in when the fish 'fire' and looking at the weather we are around 10 days to 2 weeks off. There have been a few solid fish caught by searching anglers but overall the bulk of the fish are yet to enter the bay. James from Unreel Fishing Charters has caught some small fish over the past week but also landed a cracker fish of around 80cm just a few days ago, so make sure you're prepared!


There have been a few fish scattered throughout the bay however, and the bulk of the fish caught are coming from landbased anglers. Fishing any of the shoreline around Mornington and Mount Martha has been the go, along with the top end of the bay between Mordialloc and St Kilda. Customer John got out during the week and managed a couple of nice fat school fish from the shore after dark on pilchard. John has been fishing a few locations and has found the fish biting late through the night after or during a strong 20 knot onshore wind.


At the moment the top end of Westernport has been producing the lion's share of the snapper reports. While Western Port normally fires up before Port Phillip, there seems to be good numbers of fish spread right through the port. Scattered reports have come from the Corals, Silverleaves, Corinella, Joe's Island and also through Bagge Harbour and the North arm. Customer Johnny got out on to the port during the week and landed 3 fish to around 3kg in the north arm on fresh squid. The region around Lysaughts and Long Reef in 15 - 18m has been producing quite a few school fish on squid, couta and pilchard.

 


The squid fishing again this week has been very good for anglers out there on both bays, especially down the southern end of these bays. This week again customer Angelo has done well from Flinders pier with mates. Angelo and mates have been catching some solid squid on both baited jigs under a float, and also artificial jigs under the same floats. If you fish a simple sliding spring float system you can chop and change between cast and static jigs by a simple pinch of a spring.


Silver whiting were responsible for the large squid from the pier, while the numbers of small squid were all taken on size 3.5 jigs in Haramitsu and Owner Draw 4 brands. In amongst the squid fishing there were good numbers of grass whiting taken on bait among the pier pylons. Fishing small pieces of prawn and scrubworm on a paternoster rig suspended just above the weedbeds is the best method of finding these fish. If they are reasonable size they make exceptional baits on for squid on the spike style jigs.


Not to be outdone customer Travis also fished Flinders with artificial jigs in size 3.5. Travis landed a couple of crackers around 45cm hood length. Not far from Flinders in deep waters of the entrance customer Steve has been landing some quality squid. Steve fishes offshore and regularly catches solid squid on large jigs. These squid grow large in the deep cold water and don't get fished for very much in these areas. Tip run style jigs are also very effective in the deeper water or heavier currents.


Jumping across to Port Phillip Bay and the southern end has been producing both numbers and size of squid. Customer Bashir has been fishing the Dromana area of the bay and has been doing best on size 3.5 Yamashita jigs. The better colours for this region have been the keimura or 'daytime UV'. Customer Josh has also been fishing the same areas between Dromana and Rosebud to land squid to around 1kg. Josh has been fishing the shallower banks and ledges into water around 5m and is finding the better squid in the same water. A multitude of colours from UV white through to natural whiting and wrasse colours have been the best in the region.


On the piers of the southern peninsula customer Kenny has been catching squid to around 1.5kg. Kenny has been fishing both Sorrento and Portsea piers for the best results, but has also caught some smaller squid from Blairgowrie at night. The squid from Blairgowrie have been more prolific but smaller in size, and have been liking aggressive colours and glow colours from Yamashita. Young gun Lewei has been nailing some nice squid from Sorrento pier recently too. Lewei has landed squid to 1.7kg during the day and has been using a few different jigs but his last couple of squid have come on size 3.0 gold foil jigs, especially with mixed cloud cover.

 


The southern end of Westernport has been experiencing some quality squid fishing with some of the larger Spring spawning models moving about. The southern end the port is producing the larger squid, with it's cold ocean water providing the right climate for them.


Customer Angelo has been getting down to Flinders a bit of recent, with a few trips in the last week all being successful. Angelo has been fishing the pier with some mates along with his father, to land quality squid to around 1.5kg. Angelo has been using both Clicks and Yamashita jigs in red belly and natural grass whiting patterns to secure his squid. Size 3.5  jigs are his favourite when fishing Flinders.


Customer Tony also got down to Flinders pier for a long overdue squid session. Tony managed 2 nice squid around the 30cm hood length on Yamashita jigs during a morning session on the pier. Customer Jameel has also fished the pier a bit over the past week or so, and has caught some nice squid on a mixture of jigs. Jameel has found size 3.0 Yamashita jigs along with a couple of Haramitsu colours in size 3.5 have been the best for him during the run in tides. 



A bit further out, customer Steve has been fishing with a mate in search of some quality squid around the entrance to the port. The guys have been fishing the small patches of reef and weed around the eastern entrance along with a few other weedbeds and they have been rewarded with some nice squid to around 1kg. Yamashita gold foil jigs were teh most effective for them on the day.


 


The annual snapper run is just about to kick along with warmer bay temperatures only a matter of weeks away. While Westernport has been producing a few more fish than Port Phillip that is generally the case earllier in the season. For those looking around in Port Phillip the areas to look are around Mornington or right up around Port Melbourne and Williamstown. Customer Will scored a lovely fish out wide from Mt Martha during the week. Will was cubing and fishing pilchards as bait and the big fish took a whole pillie on twin snelled 4/0's.


The top of Westernport has seen a bit more boat traffic due to the fact that the fish are 'on' a bit more. If you're fishing the 'finger' channels region or around Joe's Island you have a good shot at some lingering fish soaking up the warmth, while further around towards Hastings there has also been a few as well. Customer Chris fished Joe's last week and managed a few nice over a couple of sessions on the water. Chris has been making the most of the fresh bait in the area with couta, trevally and pike all making the baitboard and the snapper haven't rejected them.


The Hastings and Long Reef area has seen a few boats during the week with fish to around 6kg coming in. Customer Steve fished the area last week and landed a couple of nice fish to around 3kg with fresh squid being the most productive bait. Fishing the smaller tides along the reef here will normally see you land a few school fish, while moving up the banks and sitting shallower gives you a good shot at the larger fish.

 


While many anglers are starting to gear up and chase the snapper around the whiting fishing has been starting to pick up in both bays. There aren't as many anglers fishing for the whiting yet but the number is steadily growing each year, and especially during the 'off season'. While all the 'regular' areas are holding numbers of fish, the fish have seemed to be more concentrated in certain regions of the bays at the moment. Customer Aaron landed a nice bag of fish from the southern reaches of Port Phillip on pipi.


The southern end of the bay has been good for customer Josh also. Josh has been fishing the Rye/Rosebud area for the whiting and he has been having some good sessions lately. The water temperature around this part of the bay has remained a bit more consistent and has helped keep the fish on the chew. Josh has been fishing the shallow edges and has found pipi and freshly caught squid for the best results.


Westernport bay has also been fishing well for the whiting, in amongst the snapper fishing. The top end of the port hasn't quite started firing just yet but further south the fish have been on the chew. Fishing the middle spit and Tortoise head has been a very good place to start. Customer Thomas fished these two areas just recently to land a nice bag of fish in the dark, on the last of the run out tide. Mussel and pipi were the most successful baits.


The same area around Tortoise head has also been productive for customers John and VB. The guys have been fishing the inside of the head during the afternoons and have found that coinciding run out tides have been excellent. Using pipi and squid has been the go, especially when fished on number 4 circle hooks. Using a light amount of berley has been the key to getting the fish to fire up, especially a mixture of pilchard pieces and whiting nut pellets.

 


While the phrase "it's still too early" is commonly being uttered among snapper fishing talk - we're now mid September and the fish have been hanging about for a while, and anglers have been catching them. Sure, water temperatures are not quiet at 'optimum' but the fish are still there and they have to eat. Many landbased locations have been producing fish and patches of both bays are also holding fish that are eating on more regular terms. Captain Bill from Mornington took a photo of a local angler fishing the pier and rockwall just a few days ago with a nice fish taken on fresh squid. During heavy onshore weather the pier has been holding some quality fish and is worth fishing straight after said weather.


While Mornington pier has been producing fish, Frankston, Mordialloc and Brighton have also been doing the same. The beaches in these same areas have been producing active fish also - so if the pier is packed head onto the beach nearby instead of casting into the same area as a heap of other anglers, this way you're giving yourself a better chance. Customer Ahmad has been looking around the piers and beaches over the past month and has landed snapper to around 7kg for his efforts, with fresh squid and pilchard still the better baits.


For the boat based anglers in Westernport the fish have come on a bit stronger - which is normal for this time of year. Water temperatures and rainfall play a big part in when the fish switch on and where. At the moment the more consistent areas to concentrate on are between Corinella north and Grantville and about Hastings. There have been numbers of fish moving around the 'finger' channels way up the North-Eastern corner of the port, where the low tide mudflats are warming up the surrounding water. Customer Anthony has been fishing this area with his daughter and together have caught her first snapper. The nice school fish took fresh squid.

Customer Zach has also been amongst the snapper. Zach has been fishing the water of the North arm and has managed a brace of nice fish in his first trip - with fresh squid and pike both doing the job. Searching for small pockets of slightly warmer water and bait nearby is a good way to locate some snapper at the moment.

 


If you're looking for a good quality gummy shark for the table and the weather plays ball - head offshore from the bays. The offshore gummy fishing has been excellent all winter and continues on, with the wind and swell the only real factors to consider. Heading out from either entrance in Westernport or from The Rip there is acres and acres of quality shark ground to drift or anchor near. If you're heading out from the eastern entrance like customer Steve did, you can head halfway towards Cape Paterson on the right conditions, and catch your bait and gummies out there. Steve fished a bit closer in around Cape Woolamai just recently, where he a couple of gummies to 12kg on baits of freshly caught wrasse and red mullet. Steve managed the fish in about 35m of water.


Out from the western entrance customers Benny and Damien have also been getting into the gummies. The boys fished out from the Seal Rock area in 40m of water and landed 3 nice fish between them. All 3 of the fish were around the 10kg mark and took baits of wrasse and pike caught from the area. There have also been a few snapper floating around these same reef areas as they make their migration into the bays.