I will have a big red fish to go, and make it snapper (snappy).
For reasons known only to the fish, snapper are still on the bite at Queenscliff, according to Rod Lawn from Adamas Fishing Charters.
He said at this time of the year they had usually migrated south and did not return until early October with the main run in November.
During the long weekend, Rod said he bagged out on Saturday and Sunday, with most fish about 35cm and some more than 40cm.
Rod said the reefs off the bluff at Barwon Heads and near the submarine dive sites as well as the reefs near Point Lonsdale were fishing unseasonally well for snapper. Bait and soft plastics were used with about equal results.
Rod said flathead and calamari were also being caught — the flathead along the sandy bottom and the calamari inside the heads along the grass beds between the Lonsdale pier and the ferry terminal.
He said they were also biting on the Point Nepean side of the heads and as far up the bay as St Leonards.
Rod said he did not know how long the snapper would remain on the bite but he was prepared to make hay while the sun continued to shine.
Rod said it was tuna time at Portland and along the west coast of Victoria.
He said he had decided to stay at home this year rather than head to Portland but he was reliably informed that the tuna were about.
Rod said the action at Western Port was similar with the occasional snapper biting along the rubble beds off Hastings and gummy shark from the deep water near Cowes. Calamari were to be found in the grass beds in about 10m of water and flathead were being caught along the sandy bottom.
Around the traps
In our region, the fisheries have been busy relocating cod and other native fish from the irrigation channels to the Goulburn River before the irrigation water was shut off. By all reports some big cod have been found and released elsewhere, including at Victoria Park Lake in Shepparton.
There have also been releases of cod and yellowbelly fingerlings as well as trout in the lake. I have not heard of cod being caught there — but if you have, let me know.
Most of the action last weekend was around Eildon with some nice trout being caught as well as redfin. Around the trees in the Bonnie Doon arm near Epping Point and the Galleon, trout were taking scrub worms or mudeye trolled behind a Ford Fender lure. Some cod and yellowbelly were also taken by anglers using Jackall-style lures near the wall and along rocky shelves.
At Dartmouth, the number of fish being caught has increased and while early mornings is still the best time of day, they are biting later in the morning and into the early afternoon. Once again, trolling a scrub worm or mudeye behind a Fender has been the most productive method. Angling a bait below a float fished from the bank was also getting results.
Back to saltwater fishing and north of the border at Eden, John Liddell also reported snapper being caught by Mark from Freedom Charters.
He said while no horse-sized fish were about, most were of the chunky size.
He said they also bagged plenty of morwong and other reef fish including gurnard, flathead and the occasional kingfish from the close-in reefs between Boyd’s Lookout and Green Cape.
Mark said some of the flathead were around a metre in length but they were mainly caught in 20 to 30m of water.
At Narooma, Graham Cowley said his charter skipper son Nicholas was still catching plenty of reef fish although there was little action off the shelf.
He said they were also locating an occasional school of kingfish towards the northern end of Montague Island.
He said snapper, morwong, and leatherjacket were also among the catch as well as plenty of flathead along the sandy bottom.
He added that when it was too rough to go outside, there was always action inside the lake with bream and flathead from around the oyster leases and other structures.
He said some of the flathead would rival Godzilla in size.