Busy time at the Bay

SKILL: Kevin McLoughlin with a pending Australian record shark. Picture: SUBMITTED

By Jamie Coates

CALM seas and easing winds had plenty of tongues wagging for the start of the Port MacDonnell Offshore Angling Club’s annual tuna and sport fish tournament, which attracted anglers from far and wide.

Early in the competition we had seen some impressive captures, including a potential Australian record.

It is not only offshore that is kicking along, there are fish from the surf, the river and jetties.

As I mentioned, the tuna competition is well and truly underway and the fishing has been as hot as we had expected.

Anglers love targeting the big tuna in the competition, and we have seen a couple of beautiful fish.

Dewain Barrett landed his first barrel and first for the new vessel on Saturday, a lovely sample at 100kg taken on a halco diving minnow off the bay.

Tuna Charleton boated a nice 90kg fish on 15kg breaking strain line, a great effort from Tuna and the crew.

Big sharks on light breaking strain line is exceptional fun, but presents massive challenges.

A cooperative fish, well maintained and high quality gear, a clever angler and a skilful skipper and crew are all necessary, not to mention a fair bit of luck on top.

Some of the best light line shark fishos are taking part this week in the tuna competition, and we have already seen what these guys can do.

Shane Sanders and Brodie Carter have several records (Australian and world) to their names and are already putting plenty of points on the board this week.

They have landed a 30kg mako shark on 3kg line and I have a feeling that will not be the last we hear from those guys this week.

Kevin McLoughlin and Marcus Pearson are another pair of highly-skilled anglers with multiple records in the books.

Already this week they have caught a mako at 50kg on 4kg line, gummy shark to 12kg on 2kg line and most impressively, a pending Australian record school shark at over 13kg on 1kg line.

That is right, 1kg line.

That is 2lb, or about 1/3rd of the breaking strain most of us use for garfish.

A massive effort and well earned.

There have been plenty of other notable fish caught so far, including some nice school tuna on light line, sharks and a mixture of bottom fish.

We will have a full wrap up next week in our report, but if you need your fix, head down to the clubhouse at 4pm each day and check out the weigh in.

Surf fishing has been excellent this week again with some nice school shark turning up in the area.

Adam Van Dooren and Flynn Thomas have been into some nice fish to 15kg, which are impressive from the sand.

The snapper seem to be slowing up a bit, but we are seeing a few nice ones still beached.

Salmon have been in reasonable numbers, with Cape Banks, Canunda and the Beachport salmon hole all fishing well, with 40g metal slugs getting the job done.

Whiting numbers have continued to impress again, with the breakwater at Port MacDonnell, Cape Douglas, Carpenter Rocks and Southend all reported to me.

Although then numbers might not be huge, the fish are definitely in good nick and making up for it.

Garfish are doing well, with the usual spots such as Livingston’s, Cape Douglas and Pelican Point continuing to produce.

The red beak winter gar are in and the average size is impressive.

Tommies and mullet are in the same spots and good numbers and all are great on the table, so you can not go wrong.

The Glenelg River is productive at the minute.

Estuary perch are red hot.

One angler I spoke to landed well over 100 fish in an evening session, all in varying sizes to around 40cm.

Flicking lures was the key, with a white plastic getting the job done on that night.

Bream are about for the bait and lure fishos.

The best bite seems to be hard in against the rock walls and undercut ledges, but they move around a lot, so try it all until you find what works.

The Mulloway news has been a bit light on again, but we have heard of a few smaller fish from right along the river.

Hopefully we see a few swim up the river soon.

Keep an eye out for the weekend, but it looks like it should be fishable.

Until next week, safe fishing.