Hot spot at the Bay

TOP CATCH: Wilbur Wilson and a nice hapuka.

By Jamie Coates

A DECENT weekend weatherwise was enjoyed by anglers across the Limestone Coast.

The sea backing off and the wind doing the same made for some excellent fishing trips.

Port MacDonnell has been a hot spot for a few weeks now, with plenty of the offshore guys making the most of the cool but calm weather.

The tuna news has been scattered, but still quite good.

Some fishos are finding the schools of school-sized tuna in relatively close to shore, some days as close as 20 or 30 metres deep, whereas others are not finding the fish until much deeper water, 200 metres or even more in some cases.

The numbers are still excellent – just keep on the move and they should pop up somewhere.

The big fish news has still all come from over the Victorian border, but the fish seem to be heading our way.

Warrnambool, Port Fairy and Portland have been the go-to areas in recent weeks, but most are getting the feeling now the fish have been on the run west, hopefully to our waters very soon.

The shark and deep fishing over the weekend was excellent again off Port MacDonnell.

Plenty of boaties make the trip to the shelf on Sunday and found some excellent hapuka, blue eye and gemfish, while the anglers fishing the shallower water found a nice mix of gummy and school sharks, along with plenty of red snapper, flathead and morwong.

A few boaties had a crack at the inshore sharks down along the coast and it is encouraging to see there are still plenty about.

Flinty Point, Danger Point and Green Point are all very productive areas and this weekend proved no different.

The 7-15m zone has been red hot for a couple of months now and is not really showing any signs of slowing down just yet.

Gummy and school sharks have been the main targets, with fish in excess of 25kg caught in both species, but there are also a few salmon, pike and even whiting sniffing around in the same areas, so throwing down smaller baits does not hurt.

Surf fishos have tucked into the salmon this weekend.

The dead flat conditions of the last week made the going a little tough, but the stir up during the week has spurred them into gear.

Jake Dowdy, Stewie McLaughlin and Dyl Vanderhoorst managed a heap to 1.5kg over the weekend on 35-50g metal slugs.

The Beachport Salmon Hole has been a bit hot and cold.

Some days anglers find countless numbers of smaller lumpies, while other sessions the numbers are down, but the big Jackie salmon to 3kg or more are in.

It is a real flip of the coin but this time of year, you should be almost a certainty to beach a few.

Canunda and its beaches have been productive this week.

The usual spots such as the old drain, Whale Rock, Channel Rock and the Oil Rig are all fishing well and the size of the fish seems to be pretty good too.

Garfish numbers have been excellent.

I have seen some catches of not only big numbers, but big fish too.

The usual haunts such as Cape Douglas, Hutt Bay, Livingstons and Pelican Point have been fairly productive for both the boaties and waders and fishos have also mentioned some pretty big tommy ruff coming around the burley trail too.

There have been plenty of fishos taking to the local jetties this week.

Beachport and Southend have been very popular and there has been some nice fish caught.

I have heard of salmon, tommy ruff, trevally, bream and flathead caught down that way and even the odd squid still.

With the school holidays only a couple of weeks away, these are great places to take the kids for a night or two, or even just a day trip.

You also have Robe, Cape Jaffa and Kingston which are all within couple of hours drive from us here in the South East and with similar fishing to Beachport and Southend, they are definitely spots worth throwing a line in.

There has only been a handful of river reports this week, which is probably less than most of us had hoped for.

The mulloway fishing has not been red hot by any stretch of the imagination, but Karl Leggett has been boating a few smaller fish on trolled lures around the Donovans area.

The bream have been a bit patchy, but there are still plenty about if you are willing to keep on the move and track them down.

The productive lures for the bream have been natural coloured grubs and minnows in a 2.5 inch to 3-inch profile.

Some fishos have reported a bit of colour starting to come down the river now from that last bit of rain we had, which will only do good things for the fishing.

The forecast for the coming week looks a bit wet and a bit windy, but the keen anglers will not be deterred.

The river and protected bays will be worth a look – just keep an eye on conditions if you are planning an offshore trip.

Until next week, safe fishing.