The whiting fishing in Westernport continues to roll on with good numbers of school fish coming in and some larger fish around also. Large numbers of the fish have been in the 34 - 38cm size range, but searching a bit deeper has given anglers a few more here and there above 40cm. Fisherman Mike landed a lovely fish of 45cm during his last fish on the port with his dad.


Mike and his dad fished out from Hastings  They guys found that the single most effective setup were the 'Reedy's Rigs' 'Tinganoster' style rigs in bass yabby and bloodworm patterns. Small pieces of squid and pipis tipped on the hooks were deadly with a nice feed of fish coming home. Customer Jamie has also been doing well on the whiting out from Stony Point with bags of fish to just over 40cm coming from the bank edges and also around the spit during the run out tide. Pipi, mussel and squid have been the best for him.


Customer Chris from the Victoria Police Angling Club has been catching some nice whiting out from Hastings, with deeper water providing the results. Chris has been finding the fish in water 15m or so and has found pipi and squid strips best in the deeper currents. Fishing stiff leader 'snatcher' style rigs has also kept line twist and tangled rigs to a minimum and helped him secure his bag of fish.


 


While the focus hasn't been on the gummies or snapper in particular in both bays - there have been a few caught, especially pinkies and snapper. The small pinkies from 20cm to 1.5kg or so are thick especially in Port Phillip, no matter which area you're fishing. While they can be frustrating - there have been plenty of better size fish amongst them. Staff member Dylan got out for a quick arvo fish recently and was kept busy on fish from 20cm to around 45cm on lures. 4'' jerkbait style plastics caught their share but 100 - 120mm hardbodies were the most effective once the wind got up. Trolling these lures around the isolated reef patches around Brighton resulted in more than 50 fish landed, and a handful of 500g kept for the pan.


The larger fish have also been found in the same areas in the top of the bay - but the real hot spot for the next little while is the Mt Eliza - Mt Martha region. Fish like these held by customer Sam from around Mt Eliza will be worth targeting the deeper we get into Autumn. Early morning bites from dawn to around 9am are the norm, with KGW heads deadly when fished on 'dangle' rigs over the boat's side.


Out in Western port there have been some nice snapper caught amongst the smaller pinkies. While the pinkies have been thick through the whiting grounds and grass beds, fishing the 'barren' mud and rubble beds has seen red to over 4kg landed. The main region producing the quality fish has been between Rhyll and Corinella. Customers Tony and Allan have caught fish in the area to nearly 6kg. There have also been quality fish on the reef just outside both entrances, with some super solid gummies providing some quality bycatch at the same time.


While most of the larger gummies have been coming from outside the port, there have been some big fish caught throughout the Western Entrance along the deeper ledges and channel scours. Fishing these areas during the latter part of the ebb tide or start of the flood is generally the more productive time. Customer Izzy has been landing gummies to around 15kg once the sun goes down, with baits of freshly caught yakka, slimey or trevally among the best.

For the land based anglers the weekend's calmer weather should make shore-bashing a bit more enjoyable. Customer Pete has just started chasing gummies from the shore and landed his first fish during the week. Pete was fishing from the shore at Grantville and after missing and losing a few fish he changed rigs and tactics and landed this one on a circle hook baited with fresh mackerel. Fishing water no more than 1m deep in this area is very effective - but it's all very tide dependent!

 


Although the weather currently in Melbourne isn't very inspirational - the forecast is looking like some excellent weather over the coming weekend. With the recent rain the bays will be a dirty but the fish like whiting should be firing. Influxes of freshwater really stir the critters up that the whiting prey on, and they should be ready to go by the weekend. Westernport's KGW have been fishing well in all areas, with the main hot zones between Tyabb and Stony Point - be it around the middle spit or on the banks. Young gun Fisherman Mike got out and on them recently with his Dad. The guys launched at Hastings and fished the banks both north and south and landed some. Mike and his Dad are only new to Westernport's whiting fishing and took on some tips and tricks and landed a few nice fish on pipi and squid.


Fishing nearby water customer Izzy and Brett from 'Reedy's Rigs' had a good session, with a KGW bagout in only a few hours. Fishing the ultra shallow water before first light with a bit of surface chop the fish were biting hard and they were done and dusted not long after sunrise. The use of a GPS and sounder to pinpoint small sand patches and drops amongst the weed enabled locating the correct ground and fish was much easier. Fishing bass yabbies on the Reedy's 'Tinganoster' rigs was deadly - with wide gap hooks ensuring the fish stayed hooked. If you're wondering what a 'Tinganoster' rig looks like - we have these and the deadly 'Ultra' rigs in store.

 


The run of tuna local to Melbourne has continued and is gaining more and more momentum each day. With huge schools of fish to 40kg just offshore from the bays and along the coast many are taking advantage and getting amongst them when conditions allow. The schools have been isolated and as widespread as Cape Woolamai across to Portland and further west, with good numbers of fish hanging about between Cape Schank and Torquay. Vic EJ Todds Representative Mitch has been landed some sizable fish out from Barwon on stickbaits and poppers. While many anglers have been trolling lures, with increased boat traffic and pressure the fish are liable to spook - and this is where cast lures can have their advantages. Don't forget to pack popppers, stickbaits and various soft plastics!


Customer Josh came into the store after an outfit to tackle the tuna with and let us set something up for him. After gearing up Josh and some mates headed out and gave the fish a crack. The boys found the tuna just outside of the heads in quite shallow water heading towards Barwon bluff and landed a few on different hardbodies and also small skirts. Needless to say Josh is hooked will probably be doing more of it asap.


There have been plenty of anglers scoring catches of nice bluefin. The Melbourne Tuna Crumbs have been amongst the fish over the past weeks, with to just shy of 40kg coming aboard. Some of the original crumbs Michael and Pino have had fun on the fish from just outside the heads across to Angelsea. Various tactics have been working with deep running hardbodies and bibless minnows in short doing a good job at bringing the fish in. When the fish have been shy small skirts as minute as 3'' have been getting the bites, especially when fished a long way back.


The boys from Bucci Cabinets have been serving up fresh tuna with good numbers of fish in the 15 - 20kg size range being caught. The fish have again been caught along the surf coast, with the Barwon - Torquay area holding good schools. Working the 20 - 35m depth areas have been where most of the boys have been finding the numbers. Skirted lures have been the favoured method, with 5'' being about the most productive size. Some skirts as large as 10'' have been catching fish - and a good option to put in the spread as a teaser to entice the school to come up. Even if you have any huge marlin sized skirts, running them or a large popper or daisy chain of large soft plastics as an attractor has been well worth the effort.

 


Westernport's whiting fishing continues to impress. Most anglers out there and working towards a bag of fish, and the seasoned whiting fisherman are finding the fishing excellent. Most areas of the port have numbers of fish about, with pinpointed spots really not needed at all. Wherever you'd normally fish for them, they will most likely be there in numbers. Fisherman Mike went out in the port with his dad over the weekend and they caught some nice fish. Mike and his dad fished out from Hastings and caught on pipi and squid.


Customer Izzy had a whiting session late last week out in the port and got a nice bag of fish going. Pipi, fresh squid and mussel were the go along the middle spit. Customers Wayne and Simon had a quick session out from Warneet and managed a bag of around 10 fish for a quick feed. The guys fished with pipi and got most of their fish along the edge of a the shallow banks.


The area along the middle spit has been producing plenty of whiting for working anglers. Customer Jamie and mate fished along the spit and out from Stony Point over the weekend to put together a nice bag of fish. The guys caught on fresh squid, pipi and pilchard fillet. Customer Mark also fished the spit late last week with a few mates and they ended up with some nice fish to 42cm. The guys fished the spit around the top of the tide and caught on a mixture of squid and pipi.

 


Western Port's whiting fishing has still been excellent. The fish have been firing all around the port, but most of the reports have been coming from the area between Stony Point and Tooradin. The grassy banks of this region hold a lot of the substrate to protect the whiting and also give them plenty of food. If you're a novice or struggle to get yourself a feed of these fish, start the vicinity of these shallow areas. Fishing the falling tide along where the shallow grass beds drop into a main channel or gutter is a great way of intercepting them.

Staff member Don has been doing this throughout the feeder channels in the top end of the port with good success. Mixing up baits has been a must-do as the fish may have a preference for a particular bait on the day. Freshly caught squid is right up there with one of the better options, along with pipi and mussel. If you start fishing a bit deeper around the lumps and holes small pieces of pilchard is also excellent.


Customer Aaron has been fishing the top end of the port and also along the middle spit and has been doing well on the whiting. Aaron has been fishing baits of pipi and mussel and has been finding the top of the tide to be the most productive. Along the middle spit the 'cut' has been a very good section to fish lately, as this small channel is between two large shallow spits that the fish move between.


Up the top end customer Mark has also been catching his share of whiting. Mark has been fishing along the banks near the end of Tooradin channel along with Tyabb bank. Mark has been finding pipi the best performer with squid a close second. When the bite drops off a bit a small amount of aniseed and prawn mixture berley pellet gets the fish going again. Fine gauge hooks like the Gamakatsu C10U are also an excellent choice for these conditions.

 


The summertime gummy fishing has been excellent in Westernport Bay. Many anglers have been making the most of the good fishing, with large gummies on offer around most parts of the port. Customer Zoran has caught a couple of nice sharks in the 12kg mark fishing the western entrance of the port. Chunk baits of freshly caught slimey mackerel and salmon have been the most productive.


Customer Justin has also been catching some solid gummies while out on the port. Justin had a session on the whiting lately and managed to collect some fresh bait in the form of trevally, so he sat for a gummy in the western channel. He landed a nice fish around the 13kg mark on fresh trevally. The last hour of the run out tide was the productive time for the gummy, with the fish coming from a secondary channel ledge.


Further back up the port customer George had a successful session out for gummies. George fished out from Rhyll and sat along a 10m ledge, and landed a nice gummy around 8kg. The successful bait was fresh squid head, fished on a circle hook paternoster rig. Customer Izzy has also been successfully landing some nice gummies fishing similar style 'reedy's rigs'. 6/0 circle hooks on these rigs have made for easy jaw hookups and easy to remove on smaller fish.


Up along the eastern side of the port there have been plenty of gummies between 65 - 90cm roaming around the feeder channels, and these have been plenty eager enough to scoff baits of banana prawn, squid or flesh baits. These fish are best targeted around the top of the tide, as they race up the channels and feed over the mudflats. As they race back off the flats they can be intersected along these same channel ledges. There have also been reports of some bronze whalers in the same area, with the hot 'zone' between Reef Island, Elizabeth Island and Spit Point. Customer Brendan fished from Tenby Point last week chasing gummies, and landed a small bronzie of a couple kilos.

 


Well it's no secret that the whiting fishing has been 'the go' for many anglers at present. Both bays are fishing well for the tasty and slimy fish, but Westernport has been the go if you want these guys. For the guys fishing Port Philip, they have been caught all round the bay but in much patchier numbers. The southern end of the bay from Rye across to Queenscliff is the best bet if you're after them.


The top end of the Port has seen numbers of KGW increase over the warmer weather but average size has dropped from what the fish were through late spring, with plenty more fish in the 30 - 35cm mark making their way into the scaler bags. Customer Colin fished the top end around Tooradin and Gentle Annie and pieced together a bag of fish, actively moving about when the fish went off the chew and re-locating. Mussel and pipi were best.


Customer Rocky has been getting amongst the whiting but around the middle spit and it's channels. Rocky fished with mate Nick around the spit and managed a feed of lovely whiting, with most of the fish taken during the run out tide. Fishing the main edge during the stronger part of the tide was good, while the slightly deeper 'bumps' and holes were able to be fished once the run slowed off. Customer Steve also had some good whiting fishing with a few mates, launching from Hastings and fishing similar areas. Steve found that pipis were the most effective bait, with fresh squid getting a few larger fish as well. The bottom of the ebb tide was when most of the fish were taken.


Along the middle spit customer Aaron has been catching the whiting also. Aaron has found the most effective baits to be evenly spread across mussel, pipi and squid. The larger fish have seemed to have a slight preference towards strips of fresh squid, especially when fished out towards the 10m+ holes and ledges. Good snapper frequent this same area, so they are still worth a shot even while having whiting gear out during the slacker stages of the tide.

 


The fishing in Westernport and it's offshore surrounds has been where many anglers are concentrating their efforts at the moment, with plenty of good fishing for bread and butter species like the humble gummy. If you can get offshore or towards the port's entrances the fish have been larger, with gummies under the 12kg mark usually uncommon. There have been some solid school shark floating about also, as customer Steve reports. Steve caught a nice schoolie recently while anchored up just outside the eastern entrance of the port. Fresh chunks of salmon and slimey were the most effective baits for him.


If you're after a table sized shark the port has been holding loads of gummies from small pups through to around 10kg. The top of the port around it's many feeder channels along with the Corinella mudflats has been producing many of these smaller sharks. Staff member Dylan fished some of the shallow mudflats recently in search of some table flake and in a short few hour session 4 were landed up to around 7kg. The last 90 minutes of the run in produced the results, with the fish coming from a small channel ledge in 2m of water. Banana prawn was the most effective bait when fished on the edge of the flats.


The rest of the port and especially the region pushing towards the waters of Bass Strait has been worth fishing for larger gummies. Amongst the large females a few smaller sharks normally make their presence felt. Customers Vito and Simon have both done well on lovely eating size gummies over the past weeks. Baits of fresh squid, trevally and wrasse have gotten the job done when pinned as hangbaits on single oversized circle hooks. The last bit of the run out tide or fish hour of the flood has been the best time to snare one of these fish pushing in.

 


The by catch  while fishing for both whiting and snapper in the port is enough in itself to keep many anglers content, with some being better eating that the main target themselves! Changing tactic slightly to target the fish like garfish or trevally while in the shallows can provide some fun, great bait and good fare on the table.


Customer Sam has been fishing with staff member Don out on the whiting and the silver trevally have been plentiful in between whiting bites. The trevally normally make their presence known during the slackest stage of the tides and respond very well to oily berley that has some sort of pilchard or baitfish in the mix. They are best caught using softer whiting rods and fine gauge hooks, as their soft mouths can have hooks easily torn out. Don and Sam have been finding plenty along the channel edges up the top end of the port.

The same areas have also been holding good sized garfish, and they have been coming up the berley trail and can be caught on small pieces of pipi under finely weighted floats. Some of the gars have been between 40 and 50cm.


The gummy fishing has been keeping anglers happy as many are caught as snapper by catch as much a target species. Fishing the run off channel edges especially over the mudbeds has been the best way of finding one for a feed. Some of the anglers from the Keysborough Angling Club have been catching gummies along the main channel edge out from Hastings, along with whiting salmon and mackerel.

Customers Graeme and Mick have also been catching some nice table sized sharks over on the Corals. The corals area is good foraging ground for both snapper and medium sized gummies, but also gets some solid school shark and bronze whalers over the warmer months of the year. Fresh chunk or strip baits are excellent ways to connect to one.


Some large female gummies have also been making their way into the port in preparation to pup. Customers Izzy and Bruno fished the western entrance and landed 2 big female gummies. Fishing 4/0 Reedy's Rigs with californian squid got the job done, and both were caught in around 30m of water on the tide change.


Not too far away the squid fishing has been good for the land based anglers. The extensive weed and reef from Balnarring to Flinders hold some large calamari and can be fished from the shore - you just need to select your jig sink rates accordingly. Customer Travis fished from the beach at Somers and landed a couple of nice big squid on size 3.5 jigs, with gold foils doing the best. Down at Flinders pier there have been a good number of squid caught during the day, with customer Angelo getting amongst them. Angelo caught 4 nice squid in his recent session, with a mixture of UV white, lumo glow and red foil jigs doing the damage.