Corio Bay Outer Harbour
The snapper have really come on to the chew in a big way over the past week with lots of reports of fish being caught from the outer harbour. Clifton Springs has been a popular location to those who are chasing more of the pinkies to 2kg with fish holding in great numbers. Bait fishing and soft plastics have both been very effective tactics in landing numbers of fish. Portarlington has been fishing quite well for larger fish up to 5kg and even reports of some anglers getting up to the 8kg mark, channel mark number 1-4 has been a popular area. Fishing a tide change has been the ideal time to soak a bait, pilchards and squid have been a hot favourite. The Quarries has been fishing well for about the same size fish as Portarlington but seems to be a few bigger fish on average, big baits is a good way to get past the pickers. It does pay to keep on top of your baits and keep checking them as there is a lot of weed and rubbish on the bottom and baits could be down there for a period of time with a disguised bait.
The Bellarine Peninsula
Clifton Springs has been on fire with Calamari as of late with reports of plenty of boats securing bags of squid, although no huge in size there seems to be plenty cruising about. Queenscliff on the other hand is on fire for squid, the deep water in the bight has been red hot. Big calamari are currently in fantastic numbers and boats are bagging out in no time, big ones too! Shimano Clinch Rattle jigs continue to be a standout jig, we have put it down to the rattle. Out the front of the pilot jetty has also been super productive with heaps of squid holding in there too, it has copped as much pressure as the bight so is well worth having a look
Offshore Barwon Heads
The Snapper bite offshore lately has also been on fire, especially for Chris at Gone Fishing Charters. Chris and his customers have been hauling in boat loads of snapper over the past few charters with some cracking fish all amongst them with plenty of tasty by-catch such as Gummy Shark. Drifting in 50 metres of water has been a great depth to start searching, baits like squid and salmon have been a favourite. Still a few reports of boats sighting Barrels and even some boats still catching them, it’s just a matter of going out there and having a go.
This week almost every customer who has been fishing the channels towards Waranga Basin have been reporting plenty of Yellowbelly. Zx40 blades, Lipless crankbaits and soft plastics have been the best. Those bait fishing have reported good sized Yellowbelly & Redfin floating both scrub worms or small yabbies. The water clarity seems a lot better over towards the basin compared to the Main Eastern Channel which is pretty dirty so I would be heading out towards Rushworth if your wanting to fish the channels.
Yellowbelly by day Big cod by night sums up Eildon over the past week.
There is still plenty of big cod being caught at Eildon with many over a meter being reported just like the one Troy Butler caught in the photo bellow.
Throwing big Swimbaits & Topwater lures have been accounting for these big fish from sunset to sunrise. The odd big cod has been reported during the day trolling or bait fishing from the bank but majority of big fish have been caught in the dark. The Yellowbelly bite is now starting to fire up with many reports of fish being caught off trees vertically rolling Gulps & Keitechs or trolling deeper diving lures in around 20/30ft of water. We haven’t had the standard week of hot weather but once we do the Yellowbelly will go even more crazy so it’s well worth a trip to chase them while you wait for the light to drop before chasing the monster cod. Jamie and Talia were fishing the bank over the weekend and landeed some solid Yellowbelly on black grubs and scrub worms. The pair caught 4 Yellas and about 40 redfin, and of course Talia out fished Jamie.
The shepp lake has slowed up over the past week not sure if it’s due to less locals fishing the lake or if the weather has played it’s part. There is still trout rising in the evenings and if you can land a small celta or soft plastic in the area of the rise you can still land a few trout each session. Yellowbelly & Redfin reports have dropped off this week so hopefully that changes as the weather warms up. If your planning to fish the lake continue to target the weed edges or if in a boat up and down the rowing channel.
The Bait is starting to move around the Shepparton region with both Yabbies & Shrimp being caught in the nets. There has been some reports of bobbing yabbies around snags out towards Moira Park, both off the bank and in a boat. You can just lift the rod up or down or tap the butt end of your rod to jiggle your baits around. Those lure fishing are getting fish on the troll and also casting soft plastic grubs or Jackal tn60s.
It’s go time for the Broken with plenty of fish now being caught from Nalinga down to the Broken / Goulburn junction. White & Blue Bassman Shorty’s have accounted for plenty of fish this week with Yellowbelly up to 45cms and some by catch cod. If we do get some rain in the Shepparton region the Broken always fishes well on the initial rise so make sure you keep that in mind some rain forecast.
Plenty of trout are being caught in both The smaller rivers in the high country as well as the upper Goulburn. Small spinners and plastics have been working well so has the new Strike Tiger Micro Spoons with Robbie Alexander putting them to good use on some recent trips. Aiden Lloyd from Shepparton caught this cracker of a Trout while fishing with his little Brother Andrew last week in the Goulburn River.
Lake Hume has been the most consistent fishery over the past month and nothings changed this week with reports keep flooding in with big Yellowbelly & heaps of Redfin getting caught on both lures and bait. Yellowbelly are still being picked up casting almost any kind of lure on points or around trees with Blades, Tn60s in peacock or the trusty Black Gulp on a 7gr black Jig head working best. Trolling for Redfin has been the best technique Halco crazy deeps, 55mm Old Mates or even blades have worked best. Almost anything that gets out in front of a Redfin lately has been getting smashed so let’s hope this continues for weeks to come. The only negative coming out of Humd this week is the trout have gone off the bite which isn’t unexpected for this time of the year.
We are still getting good reports from the basin with week with Redfin being caught mostly drifting baits around Harriman’s and Yellowbelly being trolled up along the rock wall. Trolling smaller old mates in close and halco crazy deeps out wider has worked best with many running a soft plastic trailer behind there diving lures. Fishing from the bank has been a bit better this week with pink soft plastics working best just slow rolling around submerged trees or off the edges of either boat ramps.
Yellowbelly are starting to bite at Nillahcootie with reports now coming in mostly from those trolling smaller lures around the 55/70mm mark. Small Codgers & Old Mates have stood out also the 60mm Oar - Gee. Purple and pink coloured lures are working best with the 2 below being the stand outs. Bait fishing around the bridge has been a great way to land a few Redfin and Carp with scrub worms being the best baits.
Blue Rock Dam
The fish are now starting to bite at blue rock much more consistent. Football Jigs, soft plastics & Spinnerbaits around the timber up the river arm has worked well. Surface fishing is producing plenty of smaller fish with the micro pompadour’s working best. If your wanting to learn how to fish the lake jump over to Ben Faro - Aussie Bass Fishing page on Facebook. Ben runs charters out on Blue Rock and has a habit of catching some chunky bass just like the ones bellow that his recently caught.
The preliminary dates for Australia’s premier Bream & Bass Tournaments (ABT) have been announced and it’s a perfect calendar for Victorians wanting to fish both Bream & Bass rounds. The season for both kick off in Gippsland with round 1 & 2 for bream to be held at Mallacoota on 29th & 30th January closely followed by Metung 2nd & 3rd of February. The Bass series starts off with a double header at Blue Rock Dam on 5th & 6th of February followed by Lake Glenmaggie just 1 day later running on Tuesday 8th & Wednesday 9th.The next set of rounds for the Bream are down in Tassie and the Bass in the Hunter Valley. Both venues are the next closest for Victorians so if your keen to get into tournament fishing you can get at least 4 tournaments in each series with minimal travel compared to recent seasons. Jump over to the ABT website for more info let’s hope some Victorians show up some of the big name’s from QLD & NSW in our home state.