Geoff’s Fishing report

Sam Donaldson with his 102 cm Murray Cod (Picture: Sam Donaldson).
Sam Donaldson with his 102 cm Murray Cod (Picture: Sam Donaldson).

With the Loddon River at Bridgewater, high and discoloured following recent rain, Loddon Lures proprietor, Sam Donaldson of St Arnaud – a fanatical Murray cod fishing enthusiast – was by no means confident of success, even after remodelling his tried and true spinnerbait with a high visibility, fluoro chartreuse, blade and skirt.

Never the less, he persistently cast his lure toward promising hideouts until he, not only caught a cod, but from a quick measurement of 102 cm, it was the biggest he’d ever caught from there, and – after taking a selfie of himself and the cod – he released it.

Redfin are still the main catch at Lake Purrumbete, said John Clements who fished for an hour or so with Mick Giles of Bannockburn at the weekend for 81 reddies, while others also did well.

Lake Bullen Merri is still producing chinook salmon to 2 kg or so, both for anglers using lures and fishing with bait; among the most successful were Bruce and Riley Morrison from Geelong.

Matt Kincaid with two of the four snapper that he and Danny Skene caught off Point Richards in Port Phillip Bay on Thursday night (Picture: Danny Skene).
Matt Kincaid with two of the four snapper that he and Danny Skene caught off Point Richards in Port Phillip Bay on Thursday night (Picture: Danny Skene).

Corio Bay/Bellarine Peninsula

With a break in the weather, fishing legend Danny Skene, took workmate Matt Kincaid out for a run off Point Richards on Thursday night, hoping for a snapper. They caught four as it turned out, the biggest just on 7 kg; all caught on pilchards.

Mike Windsor of Clifton Springs Boat Hire, reports that a variety of fish have been caught off The Springs including gummy shark and whiting.

Andrew Phillips and Ivan Mitrov were amongst those to catch the gummies, boating one of 4.5 and another of 5.2 kg, while fishing with squid strips on circle hooks off Point Wilson on Sunday morning.

On Friday Andrew Johnson and Dennis O’Brien launched at Clifton Springs, and eventually found a good patch of whiting in 4 metres of water, almost directly north of the boat ramp, the biggest just shy of 43 cm,.

Early last week, they tried for whiting off St Leonards on the last of the ebb tide, which is usually a good time, but – apart from catching a couple of good size fish first up – there wasn’t much doing. However, that all changed on the incoming tide when they took a total of 31 fish to 41 cm on cocktails of pipi and squid.

Rod Ludlow of Beachlea Boat Hire reports that squid, whiting and pinkies were caught last week with Indented Head regulars Angela and Con bagging out on whiting in 4 metres of water last Wednesday during the last hour of daylight. Also successful were Tony Parcoll and partner Sue, who caught 26 good ones on Thursday evening.

Rod also mentions that both the pier and breakwater at Portarlington, and the St Leonard Pier, have also been producing whiting, pinkies and squid, which is encouraging for those on school holidays.

George Gereige with a sample of the gemfish that he and Bob McPherson caught offshore from Portland at the weekend (Picture: Bob McPherson).
George Gereige with a sample of the gemfish that he and Bob McPherson caught offshore from Portland at the weekend (Picture: Bob McPherson).
Adam Nikolovski with a gummy shark that he caught off St Leonards (Picture: Renae Ciuffetelli).
Adam Nikolovski with a gummy shark that he caught off St Leonards (Picture: Renae Ciuffetelli).


Offshore

Fishing offshore from Lorne at the weekend, Simon Werner reports that slimy mackerel were in dense shoals, but apart from those, there wasn’t much excitement, except for seeing a large thresher shark become airborne as it tore through the mackerel shoals nearby.

Bob McPherson reports that tuna are still about off Portland, but have thinned out somewhat from previous weeks. However, despite a fairly heavy ground swell, he and George Gereige fished out wide from Portland, and as usual, their catch included gemfish and blue eye trevalla.

Kiong Wong with his prize winning whiting (Picture: Peninsula Whiting Classic).
Kiong Wong with his prize winning whiting (Picture: Peninsula Whiting Classic).

Classic catches

The 2017 Bellarine Whiting Classic – hosted by the St Leonards and Bellarine Pirates Angling Clubs, Western Beach Fishing, and Leopold Angling and Aquatic Clubs – was won by Kiong Wong, who not only caught the heaviest whiting of 560 grams, but his Tag took out the $500 cash prize: Kiong cleaned up in the raffle as well.

The heaviest bag of 5 whiting weighed 2.185 kg and was taken by John Kompa of Werribee. Shane Gordon followed with 2.08 kg and Noel Behan came third with 1.99 kg. Heaviest junior’s bag weighed 1.48 kg and was taken by Brandon Scaffidi.

Ken asks:

Geoff, I fish land based, and while I have had some success at Western Port, my repeated trips to St Helens have produced nothing. Where could I catch some fish around Geelong?

Ken, the Sheepwash area of the Barwon Estuary is fishing well at the moment, particularly following either tide change, both of which occur at similar times to those predicted for Geelong wharves.

You should be able to catch silver trevally, small but legal size Australian salmon, and mullet, on your light tackle using whitebait, pipis or pilchard fillets for bait.

Catching a mulloway is always possible on your heavier tackle, and elephant fish are about as well. Baits for these larger species include live mullet, or the fillets thereof, along with garfish and squid, both of which are also good baits, provided they are fresh.

There are jetties along Riverside Drive between Sheepwash Road and the Sheepwash boat ramp, as well as several areas along the bank, in either direction from Sheepwash Road, where you can fish as well.

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