Corio Bay/Bellarine Peninsula
Snapper are still on offer in Corio Bay, something that Steven Lee could relate after picking up a beauty of 9.5 kg on Sunday night on a pilchard.
Anchored some distance offshore from the Mountain View Quarries, Steve soon had a berley trail going that attracted numerous juvenile gummy sharks that threatened his bait supply. But at 11.00 pm, and during the last hour of the incoming tide, one of his rods his rods sang the familiar snapper tune, heralding a 10 minute tussle with his prize catch.
Naturally, old hands at the game, like Danny Skene, also did well with a tally of four big snapper over two trips last week, fishing the tide changes at one of his favourite marks along the west side of the Wilson Spit: His fish were also caught on pilchards.
With northerly winds predicted for next week, and snapper having been taken from the Portarlington breakwater, this structure – particularly at this time of year – offers a window of opportunity for land based anglers to catch large snapper, but you do need a landing net with a long handle, and preferably a mate to use it; that’s if you are serious.
Salmon have been present in good numbers, both in the inner harbour and right around the Bellarine Peninsula. Here, Rod Ludlow of Beachlea Boat Hire at Indented Head reports that they were hard to miss, given the number of birds diving on the bait fish they’d rounded up at the surface. These too have been taken from the Portarlington Pier and breakwater recently.
Rod also mentions that the fishing was slow over the weekend, particularly for squid. However, a handful of anglers, including Andrew Phillips and Tony Grech, picked up bag limit catches as they did the previous weekend while fishing offshore from the St Leonards Yacht Club; the biggest weighing over a kilogram.
John Clements of the Lake Purrumbete Holiday Park reports that some good size brown trout including one off 4.53 kg that was taken by Nick Alexeyeff while casting a soft plastic from his boat along the edge of the weeds banks. Another of 3.62 kg was taken on the fly by Aussie Fly Fishers Club member David Woods who also caught several rainbow trout to a kilogram or so with the same approach.
Brook trout have also turned up from time to time in Lake Purrumbete, the latest being a 1.5 kg specimen taken by David Kelly at the weekend.
Redfin continue to be taken in good numbers, said John, with Geelong angler Terry Lindsay catching several to 1.2 kg using tiger worms for bait.
At nearby Lake Bullen Merri, Ken Carman of Camperdown continues to catch chinook salmon to 2 kg on soft plastics, while visiting anglers from Werribee and Bendigo Angler’s Clubs took both chinook salmon and rainbow trout over the weekend from the same water.
Following my report of good size redfin being taken from Stony Creek Reservoir a couple of weeks ago, a source who wishes to remain anonymous, says that although the lake has had a hiding over recent months, such has been its popularity, redfin are still on the go along with brown trout to a kilogram that have been taken, both on bait and lures.
Geoff, I’ve seen several shark reports in the news lately: Wouldn’t the water be too cold for sharks at present?
Colin, some sharks, like gummy, school and seven-gilled sharks are present in our waters all year round. Larger sharks; those typically found relatively close to shore like bronze whalers, usually arrive in November. This is also when large pregnant females of this, and sometimes other species, enter Port Phillip and Corio Bays to bear their young, usually staying within Port Phillip Heads until at least until February or March.
Great white sharks, the species presently making the news, appear at various coastal features, like The Nobbies on Phillip Island, and Lady Julia Percy Island near Port Fairy, from late September or October to prey on seal pups. However, being one of several shark species capable of elevating their body temperature some 14 degrees Celsius above the ambient water temperature, their presence is somewhat unpredictable.