Amy McNally and David Muldoon, both recently from Ireland and who’d not yet fished in Australia, certainly made the right connection in Darcy Scott, who arranged a squid fishing trip off Queenscliff on Thursday evening.
Needless to say, they each took their respective bag limit catches of squid, some of good size, while learning to dodge the spray of ink these tasty cephalopods can deliver.
But Darcy, who does his best work in the dark, was out in time to catch Saturday’s pre-dawn flood tide off Queenscliff’s Swan Island grass beds; a move that paid off with a bag limit catch of whiting, the biggest measuring 47 cm, all being caught on squid.
Michael Evans of Victorian Inland Charters (South West), made two trips on Lake Purrumbete last week, one by himself, and the other with Tim Beusmans.
Michael’s two best brown trout, one male, the other female, each weighed 3.8 kg, along with another brown of 3.3 kg, while Tim’s best fish, a female brown, weighed 4.26 kg.
These were all caught on Tassie Devils – along with a good many other smaller fish – either being trolled at the surface, or down-rigged to 12 metres or so.
Others to catch good size brown trout included Kurt Rundle who caught one of 3.5 kg on a mudeye suspended under a float.
John Clements of Lake Purrumbete Holiday Park mentions that redfin are on the bite at Rocklands Reservoir and that he and Trevor Holmes of Victorian Inland Charters really cleaned up here earlier in the week. Preferred baits were scrub worms and yabbies, while some took soft plastics.
John also reports that redfin remain the main chance on Lake Purrumbete with Les and Jeff Broughton picking them up to 800 grams or so on scrubworms.
Freshwater lure-fishing enthusiast, Rod Shepherd, also sought redfin on Lake Purrumbete early last week, and – while anchored up in 13 metres of water – first tempted a 41 cm rainbow trout while jigging a 3” Magbite shad.
However, it took a good deal longer to catch the first of what turned out to be a respectable bag of redfin as the shoals came and went.
Corio Bay/Bellarine Peninsula
On Friday afternoon, Andrew Johnson and Dennis O’Brien fished in 5 metres of water off Curlewis, and in less than two hours, took their respective bag limit catches of whiting to 40 cm using squid and pipi for bait.
Hoping for a repeat performance the following day, they arrived somewhat earlier to first, replenish their squid supply. However, after catching eight just out from the Clifton Springs boat ramp; their planned trip to Curlewis was curtailed by a stiffening breeze from the north-west, persuading their retreat.
Mike Windsor of Clifton Springs Boat Hire reports that several good size flathead were caught by Peter Sierakowski and a companion who came upon a good patch on the drift off Point Richards; their larger fish measuring from 44 to 50 cm.
Mixed bags of fish were the order of the day though, with Andrew Martin and Nebz Ristic from Melton among those to take pinkie snapper, flathead and squid.
Rod Ludlow of Beachlea Boat Hire at Indented Head reports that squid have been the main catch, but a number of pinkie snapper from legal size to 36 cm have been caught as well, along with the occasional whiting.
Geoff, I haven’t heard much about the barramundi fishery in Hazelwood Pondage lately: Did they survive the winter, or did they all die?
Greg, a January 2018 update from the Victorian Fisheries Authority says that “Intensive monitoring of the fishery between April 2017 and January 2018 has found that around 1,500 barra had survived the cold winter, some of which are now approaching the magical-metre-mark”.
In addition to that, the update goes on to say that – due to an agreement between VFA and Gippsland Water – land based anglers now have access to some 500 metres along the pondage channel bank, which is – from all accounts – a productive area to fish. This, along with the new road, car park and fencing with appropriate signage, would seem to be of genuine benefit to recreational anglers keen to rumble with a decent barra.