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Tried and Tested • • •



ZMan 2.5” Slim SwimZ Valley Hill Rocketeer Slicer Daiwa threadlines



Boating Whittley CW1650 with Yamaha F70 • Tracker ProGuide 16WT •


Sounding for snapper • The great rig debate • Get ready for redfin • Summer guide to polarised sunnies •

November, 2016 Fishing Monthly G R O U P

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November 2016, Vol. 12 No. 1


Horsham 61 Robinvale 61 Mildura 60 Yarrawonga 60 Shepparton 64 Wangaratta 62 Jindabyne 65 Eildon 66 Bonnie Doon 66 Goulburn River 67 Central Gippsland 68 Melbourne Metro 69 Bendigo 68 West/South Gippsland 69 Crater Lakes 69 Ballarat 70



REGULAR FEATURES A look at… 14 Back to Basics 16 Boating 92 Chappy’s Hotspot 31 Dam Levels 60 Fun Page 58 Inland Fisheries Service 50 Kayaking 88 Spearfishing 86 Tasmanian Lake Levels 53 Tournament News 87 Track my Fish 54 Trade and Services Guide 100 Victorian Tide Times 102 VRFish Update 49 What’s New Fishing 78 What’s New Boating 98



VICTORIA FISHING MONTHLY Business Office: Unit 1, 11 Knobel Court, Shailer Park, Qld, 4128 Phone: (07) 3387 0800 Fax: (07) 3387 0801 Managing Editor: Steve Morgan Editorial Manager: Jacqui Thomas Sub-Editors: Bob Thornton Nicole Penfold Cordelia Adams Field Editor: Kelly Hunt Publishers: Steve Morgan Matthew Drinkall

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OUR COVER Colbie Lesko with a cracker redfin that swallowed a jerkbait. A Colbie Lesko image.

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the magazines. A great way to stay connected with what you are doing is to subscribe to our channel on YouTube. That way, you’re notified immediately when we upload a video. Usually, you’ll get to watch it weeks or sometimes months before we publicise its existence in print. Search for: FishingMonthly on YouTube and sign up. In just the last month, there have been around 20 videos created that have been uploaded for your viewing pleasure! ADD US ON SOCIAL MEDIA The other way you can stay connected with us is on Facebook (Like: Fishing Monthly Magazines) or Instagram (Follow: fishingmonthly) – we usually update content on these two platforms daily and are happy to share your photos if you have an awesome catch.


Use a sounder to snap up snapper Rigged: which rigs get the snapper on Ready for redfin? Some fishy facts Your summer guide to sunnies

forward Gone Fishing Day is set to become a permanent part of Australia’s calendar. One of the most important parts of the day was making sure that you signed up at the official website – www. It’s just as important to tell the government that you went fishing as it was to go fishing. Crazy but true. If you’re tech savvy, you’ll be able to see a lot of the activity across the nation by searching #gonefishingday. And keep an eye out for the date for the 2017 Gone

Fishing Day. We’re sure it will be released by the time this magazine hits the shelves. END OF THE CRAZY WEATHER? I’m sure it’ll be a while before we see the country as green as it will be by the end of this spring. Flooding from the seemingly crazy weather patterns causes short-term heartache, but is a long-term bonus for our river systems and impoundments. I can just imagine the thousands of freshwater natives that have happily redistributed themselves throughout the catchments. It’s bound to be a productive summer – both in the salt and the fresh. YOUTUBE GOING GREAT Increasingly there is demand for video to go with the reviews that we publish in Fishing Monthly. For a couple of years now, we have been ramping up the AV content to support the written content in



WE WENT FISHING Although this issue goes to press a couple of days before the inaugural Gone Fishing Day, at the time of writing it is shaping up to be a cracker of a day for thousands and thousands of Aussies. Over 100 organised events nationally as well as thousands of personal trips combined to make this possibly the biggest fishing day in Australia. Hats off to the individuals, clubs, stores and governments who got on board to make it as easy as possible to introduce new anglers into the sport. Several states waived the requirement for a licence for the day and Western Australia even shifted the date of a closed season for a couple of days to accommodate. It is estimated that around 5 million Aussies wet a line annually and moving


NSW SOUTH COAST Eden 43 Mallacoota 42 Narooma 45 Merimbula 44 Bermagui 46

From the Editor’s Desk...


Ninety Mile Beach 39 Marlo 38 Lakes Entrance 39 Gippsland Lakes 38 McLoughlins Beach 40 Bemm River 40 Inverloch 41







Geelong 22 Port Phillip West 24 Port Phillip North East 26 Port Phillip East 27 Mornington Peninsula 28 Western Port North 32 Western Port South 34 Phillip Island 33






West Coast 18 Warrnambool 18 Portland 19 Apollo Bay 20 Cobden 20







Koondrook: Molin Motorcycle and Marine | 03 5451 1500 | Tasmania: Coastal Marine | 03 6435 2200 |




Sounder way of snapper fishing VFM

John Adams

Pink snapper are a highly prized, sought after fish. They’re distributed around the Australian coast, commonly caught from the Gascoyne region of Western Australia to South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, and right up the southern coasts of Queensland. Here are some tips about snapper and how to use your sounder to improve your catch rate. Fishing from the shore,

large numbers, sometimes between 1000-2000 fish – the size of these fish schools can mislead people into thinking that snapper numbers are healthy. What needs to be considered is that these fish may have travelled long distances, from a wide area, and this does not necessary mean there’s a lot of them out there. SHALLOW WATER SNAPPER SCHOOL An observant fisher can sometimes spot dense schools of pink snapper finning around in the shallows, close to the shore

commonly found in the vicinity of coral bottoms, where they gather in large schools to spawn. A single mature breeding snapper can release thousands of eggs in a season. Most of these eggs will not survive due to natural mortality. When large fish aggregations occur, the food source is quickly depleted and fish become ferociously hungry. This makes them easy to catch, but can result in pressures on the fish stocks from overfishing. A very hungry super school of snapper can also do damage to mussel stocks.

The author with a cracker fish. from kayaks, or from deep blue water boats, anglers have the opportunity to catch pink snapper. They’re found in a wide range of water depths, from the shallow waters of estuary bays and inlets to the deep waters of the continental shelf, where fishers may see large schools finning just below the surface. HEALTH OF SNAPPER STOCKS Snapper aggregate in

in estuary bays and inlets. These fishers spot them by looking for what look like patches of black seaweed with a slight tinge of blue. This colour is created by the fishes pink body color and the sprinkling of iridescent blue spots on their backs. SNAPPER HOTSPOT Snapper are known to form hotspots, in both shallow and deep water locations. Snapper in deep oceanic waters are

Brad Thompson, a Western Australian mussel farmer, had an encounter with a super school of hungry pink snapper a few days before Christmas last year. The super school attacked his mussel farm, crunching through thousands of dollars of mussels and ate 15t in 10 nights – wiped out his entire Christmas stock. At times these fish can become annoying if you want to catch other types of

fish. Snapper like to get to the bait first. If this happens, all you can do is move to another spot to get away from them. SNAPPER BAIT One memorable autumn fishing trip, a group of us, including a fisher from Japan, went out fishing from Fremantle in Western Australia. On this day, we headed west 24 nautical miles from Fremantle to the 120m contour line. Fishers need the right gear and skill to catch fish at that depth. The day didn’t look good for fishing – the swell was up to 3m and the wind was southwest between 12-16 knots. It was going to be hard work to hold the bottom, and the drift would be fast, so we decided to do some long drifts over the depth contour line, and hope for the best. The bait we normally use is octopus as it’s a good bait to use at that depth and stays on the hook. Our Japanese friend brought his own bait. When we arrived on the grounds and were getting ready to bait up and drop our lines to the bottom, he pulled a large scaly mackerel from his esky. My first thought was “That won’t stay on the hook at 120m,” and my second thought was, “This bloke doesn’t understand deep water fishing.” It soon became apparent he did. I watched him delicately cut two 10cm strip baits from the side of the partly defrosted 25cm mackerel. He placed each bait on the end of a single hook, leaving the barb of the hook completely exposed. We all dropped our lines to the bottom and started the first drift. Within a few minutes, our friend was hooked up on his first fish and landed a big snapper. Our octopus bait couldn’t compete with the scaly mackerel. Mackerel bait mimics the action of a small fish when placed dangling on the end of a

Pink snapper looks really good in the water. hook, and its strong oily odour is quickly detected by the fish’s nasal sac. Big snapper like to eat small fish, so this method of strip baits using mackerel works a treat. SOUNDER FREQUENCIES FOR SNAPPER Pink snapper inhabit depths from 1-250m, so different frequencies will need to be used depending on the water depth being fished. The golden rule is that high frequencies produce the best resolved images in shallower depth, and low frequencies produce the best resolved images in deeper water depth. Snapper fishing in shallow water using 450kHz Once a year, from April to October, snapper spawn in an area called Cockburn Sound, close to the Port of Fremantle in Western Australia. During the spawning season, the area is closed to snapper fishing. The shallow depths in this location are covered in meadows of sea grasses, which provide a nursery

for the spawning snapper that have come in from the deeper oceanic waters. During last year’s closure, in the early part of the season, I ventured out into the Sound to take a number of screen captures using a colour sounder, and to check out the fish stock numbers. This area has shallow water depth, so I was able to use two different operating high frequencies, as shown in my screen captures. Screen capture no. 1 was taken with an operating frequency of 450kHz. This frequency can produced highly resolved screen image of bottom structures within a limited depth range. The bottom echo signal is always the most prominent signal recorded the display. Notice how the echo signals from single fish targets appear as small dots on the display –­ this is created by the frequency’s characteristics. A number of these fish targets can be seen to have gathered into a school, forming a vortex on the top of a bottom structure.

Turn fishing into catching

View sample pages and purchase online at: 8


Screen capture no. 4 shows three schools of fish.

Snapper Screen capture no. 2 is an example of how an operating frequency of 450kHz can produce highly resolved screen images of a boat wreck. This boat wreck is sitting on a flat sandy

Note that echo sounder signals are not specific to any type of fish, therefore a fisher can’t identify the type of fish from the signal recorded on the display screen. A definite

80% to further enhance the signal strength of fish targets recorded on the display. Fish school no. 1 has a parabolic arch, created by the fish school being virtually stationary when

Screen capture no. 3 was taken at 200kHz –­ the same single target fish from No1 look bigger. bottom surface, and it is completely covered in fish. It is also home to a resident school of large Samson fish. Had this image been taking using a different frequency, like 200kHz, it would have looked completely different. Snapper fishing in shallow water using 200kHz Screen capture no. 3 was taken 100m away from No1 with an operating frequency

identification of fish can only be made by catching the fish, or by sending down a diver or camera. Note the difference in the size between the echo signals from single fish targets in this screen capture, and then compare them to the ones in Screen capture no. 1 They are the same size fish, but the echo signals from single fish targets are

the transducer’s sound beam passed through it. Echo signals from single fish targets can be see below the main school. Fish school no. 2 is the smallest in this screen capture. Echo signals from single fish targets can be seen close to the bottom to the left of the school. Fish school no. 3 is the largest and most dense fish school. The signal strength

The author’s grandson Lachlan with a nice snapper. of 200kHz. The bottom echo signal indicates a flat sandy bottom surface. The echo signals from single fish targets can be seen above the bottom echo signal. These signals are strong targets, indicating medium size fish. These fish are likely snapper, because this image was taken during the snapper spawning season. Not many fish in this location would swim well off the bottom, producing echo signals this size.

bigger when using 200kHz. Screen capture no. 4 uses an operating frequency of 200kHz. It shows three schools of fish rising up into the water column. The thickness and tails within the bottom echo signal are indicating a rough hard bottom surface. The background clutter in this image was created by switching the sensitivity gain control from auto to manual, and then tuning the sensitivity gain control up to

of the fish school is similar to that of the bottom echo signal, indicating a lot of fish. When dropping a baited line on top of these types of fish schools, a fish hook-up will often occur before the lines reach the bottom. In these situations, snapper will even bite on bare hooks. Low frequencies (83/50 kHz) are selected in deeper water-depths, and will produce reasonably good resolved To page 10



Snapper fish detected at 160m will be recorded as a weaker signal or may not even be visible on the display screen. By switching the TVG ON, and adjusting it to the depth, a school of fish located at 160m is recorded proportionally to the same size school of fish detected at 60m. TVG works well at depths to 450m, but after that it loses effect. Some sounders allow TVG to operate on auto control, while others can only be operated on manual control. I prefer operating TVG on manual control, where I control the amount of gain. By doing this, the image will be fully optimised to detect fish targets through A kayak fisher with a great catch at night. screen images. The lower the frequencies, the lesser resolved the image. The depth-range at which these frequencies can be operated is not restricted due to its low acoustic absorption loss through the water during transmission. The operating range at low frequency is determined by the performance level of the transducer. Sounding in water depths of 200-600m will only be achieved with a high performance transducer.

TIME VARIABLE GAIN Fishing deeper water depths, it’s essential to use Time Variable Gain (TVG) correctly. If you’re not using it, you will be missing out on a lot of fish. The golden rule is, as you go deeper increase the TVG setting and as the depth decreases, reduce the TVG setting. With the TVG switched off, a school of fish detected at 60m will be recorded as a strong signal. The same size school of

Screen capture no. 1 shows bottom structure and a school of fish.

Screen capture no. 2 shows a wreck clearly. the various depth ranges. UNDERSTANDING ECHO SOUNDERS/ FISH FINDER When I first used echo sounders, I found the information recorded on the display was a complete mystery. I discovered over time there are no mysteries or secrets attached to echo fishing, only facts. Once these basic facts and principles are understood, they can be applied to any colour echo sounders, in any water depth, anywhere in the world. If you become skillful in reading the echo sounder, you’ll be able find many new

locations that produce fish. This will open up a whole new world and perspective of life under the sea. John Adams’ book, How to use an Echo Sounder/ Fish-finder is well known among anglers. John is an ex commercial fisher with a vast amount of expertise using colour echo sounders, he lives in Western Australia where he manages Fremantle Boat School and is a keen recreational fisher. To learn more about echo fishing, visit www.howtouseafishfinder. com, or contact John by email, john@ fremantle

PARTICIPATING MAHINDRA AUTO DEALERS VIC: MELBOURNE (CAMPBELLFIELD - FRANKSTON) - BALLARAT - BENALLA - BENDIGO - KYABRAM - ROBINVALE - WANGARATTA Photographs may show overseas models or illustrate non-standard equipment. *Drive away pricing for 4x4 Dual Cab with factory wellside tub. All Promotional pricing ends 31st December 2016 or while stocks last. See your dealer for details. All Prices include GST. # Fishing Pack Offer: Promotional price of $3,500 only applies if Bull Bar, Tow Bar and Snorkel are fitted to vehicle at time of purchase. ^Mahindra PikUp Test Drive Promotion: Test drive a Mahindra PikUp at your nearest Mahindra Dealer ( between 25th August 2016 and 27th January 2017, enter your name, phone number and email address at the dealership via entry form, and go in the draw to win one of two $1,000 BCF Vouchers, valid for 12 months at Not redeemable for cash, first draw on 31st October 2016, second draw on 30th January 2017. NSW Permit No: LTPS-16-06163. DMM5618.



MAP IT. OWN IT. SHARE IT. I can’t believe how good this map is I just downloaded free off the Quickdraw™ Community. Look at this structure, those drop offs. Never would have known about this lake without the community. It’s fun fishing new water. I’ve already caught two nice keepers. Of course, I’ve uploaded some pretty nice maps, too. Glad someone decided to share this one.


Qu ic k draw Comm unity o n G a rmi n Co nnect™

© 2016 Garmin Ltd. or its subsidiaries




Snapper and the great rig debate WESTERN PORT STH

Jarrod Day

Since the dawn of time, there’s been a conundrum about which rig is the right one to use when targeting snapper throughout Victoria. Unlike many other states where snapper are caught, Victoria’s snapper fishery is very unique. Two major waterways, vastly different

tidal section sees very few snapper caught in season. Draw a line on a map from Mount Martha on the eastern side of the bay to St Leonards on the western side – most snapper caught in Port Phillip Bay come from north of this line, pure snapper territory. Throughout this 1,900 square kilometre waterway, it’s common for anglers to fish with almost unweighted baits. Just a stone’s throw away in Western Port, the

Port Phillip Bay to heavily weighted paternoster rigs and running sinker rigs in Western Port, there are also many variations that can be used – some with a fair thought process to back them up. PATERNOSTER Of all the rigs and their variations, the paternoster rig is the only one that rarely changes. The prime function of a paternoster rig is to suspend one or two baits above a sinker, which

Brian Rinaldi knows the importance of being flexible with rigs in order to catch fish at all times of the season. from one another, require two different fishing techniques. Port Phillip Bay may be affected by tidal pressure in its lower regions like the entirety of Western Port, but Port Phillip Bay’s somewhat

attach hooks is to loop them on each of the formed loops above the sinker. However, to create a more natural looking bait, I snip one side of the loop and tie the hook to the end using a three turn uni knot. This allows the bait more freedom to move in the current. Although any hook can be used when fishing a paternoster rig, you have to remember this rig is designed to be kept tight at all times. Even while drift fishing or with the rig suspended on the bottom under the boat, its design expects the angler to hold the rod in hand or in the rod holder allowing the line to be tight and every bite to be seen. In this case, a paternoster rig should always be rigged with a circle hook or octopus circle hook. The circle is designed for non-angler interaction when hook setting, so when it comes to using a paternoster rig where the line is tight, once the fish takes the bait it’s hooked immediately. There’s another variation of the paternoster rig called the extended paternoster rig, but this is used more for targeting King George whiting with smaller #4 and #6 circle hooks, rather than snapper. When it comes to rig

It doesn’t matter the size of the fish being targeted – the trap is the same. Use the best tackle you can afford at all times. thorns starfish. RUNNNING SINKER RIG One of the most widely used rigs today is the running sinker rig. Targeting snapper in Victoria, it can be used in Western Port and Port Phillip Bay. Between both waterways, there really isn’t much variation, except for the physical componentry used to build the rig itself. The sole purpose of a

intense turbulent water pressure causes anglers to use weights up to 20oz+ just to hold bottom and keep baits within range of a hungry red. Even more mind boggling is that within the space of using unweighted baits in

When fishing with overheads in Western Port, keep your rods at water level. This enables the fish to take a bait without feeling too much restriction. The hook will set itself and the reel will howl.

The humble calamari ring – the bait of choice for many anglers. 12


will have the bait higher than any weed growth and reef that the angler may be fishing over. This rig is particularly good for drifting fish to cover vast areas as it allows itself to bump over weed or reef without the hooks getting hung-up or the bait ripping off. The paternoster rig is simple in design – a length of 20-30lb nylon leader with two loops tied using overhand loop knots at equal intervals. At the bottom, another loop is tied so the sinker can be looped onto the mainline. Some anglers prefer to use a snap swivel here instead of tying a loop knot. Either works. The quickest way to

selection, a paternoster rig can be used in both Western Port and Port Phillip Bay. In Western Port, it’s more effective when drift fishing areas such as the North Arm, Western Entrance or while fishing the rubble seafloor in Bass Strait. However in Port Phillip Bay, a paternoster rig is best suited to fishing directly under the boat while at anchor. When setting a berley trail, which tends to pool around the boat with the lack of current, the paternoster rig suspends two baits higher in the water column which are still visible to a hungry snapper, unlike a discarded half pilly sitting on the seafloor getting munched on by a crown-of-

running sinker rig is to allow the bait to be taken by a fish without feeling any

restriction from the fishing line, rod or drag. This is best suited to those very finicky fish species on any given day, such as snapper in glass calm conditions or the middle of the day. PORT PHILLIP BAY In Port Phillip Bay the running sinker rig is by far the best and most trusted rig used today, but due to the lack of tidal influence in its upper regions, the weight needs only 4g in a size #1 ball or barrel sinker. Of course there’s also a conundrum with sinker design too. Many years ago, Brian Rinaldi, whom many remember from the early Red Hot Fishing Charter business days taken over by his son Simon Rinaldi, once sat me down and spoke about the benefits of fishing barrel sinkers for snapper instead of ball sinkers in different fishing scenarios. After breaking it down, I was left with this, ball sinkers threaded onto the line and cast with a bait will roll around on the seafloor even with very little wind and tidal movement. Should the boat be yawing, the situation can be much worse. On the other hand, in calm conditions, a barrel sinker

The tools – always make sure you have the right gear for the job at hand.

Snapper will lay flat and hold the bait in position more. This is the ideal sinker to use on calm conditions and when fanning out multiple baits. Sinker choice enters into the equation, so does where you place it on the rig. This is another conundrum that I swear by, given the weather conditions on the day. A sinker placed between the hooks and the swivel will

have more weight on the bait end when cast. This will allow a further cast from the boat as well as enable the bait to sink faster towards the bottom. This is particularly effective in rough conditions when surface wave action can cause the bait to stay higher in the water column, as the wind and waves toss the line around on the surface.

You can fish light in Port Phillip Bay, but you have to be wary of what the fish are doing to be successful.

Then again, a sea bird could take the bait once it hits the surface. In areas where there is limited tidal pressure like Mt Eliza, Mornington to Mount Martha, this version of the rig is recommended. A sinker placed onto the mainline to run to the top of the swivel is ideal in calmer conditions, or where there’s very little current and you want the bait to sink slowly to the bottom to keep the bait in the strike zone for longer. It does this by sliding up the mainline when cast and landing in the water some 10m from the boat while the bait sails out much further. The sinker goes to the bottom, slowly pulls excess line and bait towards the bottom and leaves it to stay in the berley trail for a longer period of time. When targeting snapper on this style of rig, the mainline tends to be monofilament ranging 15-20lb with a metre length of 30lb fluorocarbon leader. Due to the lack of current, a snelled set of size 5/0-6/0 hooks are better. WESTERN PORT When it comes to using a running sinker in Western Port, all you know about the rig used in Port Phillip Bay can be tossed out the window – at least the componentry to make it can be. Western Port, due to its

strong tidal pressure, reefy bottom and abundant toothy critters, requires the rig be beefed up. The rig is very similar to that used in the bay, but instead of the debate about where the sinker goes, in the Port it’s placed onto an Ezy Rig suspended above the swivel. The reason is because sinkers in Western Port to hold bottom can range between 2-20oz depending where you fish. The Ezy Rig clip enables such a heavy weight to easily slide along the mainline without causing damage to it. The metal clip should be removed and replaced with a 30-45cm length of 8lb leader line. This is to prevent the entire rig being busted off if the sinker is snagged in the reef. The Ezy Rig then runs on the mainline to a swivel and a metre length of 80lb trace with a single size 6/0 circle hook. Although the Ezy Rig can be threaded onto the mainline, be weary if you use braid. If the sinker gets caught in the reef and a fish takes the bait, the braid can cut into the Ezy Rig and cause the braid to break. In this case, run the Ezy Rig on a length of 60lb nylon leader and join it to the braid with a slim beauty, FG or Albright knot. This version of the running sinker doesn’t

When the weather is rough in Port Phillip Bay, run your sinker right to the bait. need to be any more complicated than outlined above. Providing you built it from quality components, the setup will allow any snapper to take the bait without feeling any restriction. The circle hook,

once the fish runs, will set itself if there’s drag set on the reel. At the end of this deliberation, the rig to use for snapper is quite simple – both the running and paternoster rigs have their place and time.

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A Look At...

Sussing out snapper rigs MELBOURNE

Luke McCredden

In fishing, there is a fine line between landing a trophy fish, and not even getting a bite. A lot of the time it comes down to the tackle you’re using. Whether it be leader size, hook size, bait presentation or sinker weight, the narrowest of margins can stand between you leaving

the boat ramp empty-handed and catching a whopper. As snapper fire up in Victoria, I figured it would be fitting to have the conversation about snapper rigs. What to use, when to use it, and specifics in terminal tackle. I asked my good mates Dan Lee from Compleat Angler Rosebud and Shaun Furtiere what they thought about snapper rigs. What is your preferred rig for snapper? SF: Typically in Western Port, a standard running sinker rig


Snapper are on every anglers’ mind in November.

is my preferred rig. My main line is mono of around 25lb breaking strain. My leader is around 1200-1300mm of 60lb nylon. A simple 10cm loop is placed at end of the leader to allow bomb style leads to be attached. I always use quality roller type swivels in the small to medium size – 90-120kg or so. Hook arrangement is always a twin snelled set up of 4/0 size, in an octopus pattern. Although single circles are a good choice, the addition of two hooks while on charter is a safeguard for the most part. DL: I love the lightly weighted northern Port Phillip Bay rig for most of the bay including Mt Martha. I always snell the top hook, put a glow bead on and generally use small barrel sinkers rather than balls as they do not twist up the rig as badly. In more tidal water further south of Port Phillip Bay, I use the ‘Western Port’ style of rig with twin hooks. How many rigs do I need to know? SF: 98% of the time I use two rigs in total for every fish species encountered on Western Port. Occasionally, slider float rigs are deployed for catching squid during spring time, but this is also well suited for snapper, gummy shark and mulloway. The main

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Shaun Furtiere has a good idea of what rigs work best for snapper, as it’s his job to put people onto fish. difference is a slight shift in leader size up to 80lb for gummy shark and the use of a single 8/0 Octopus circle style hook. For smaller species such as whiting, yakkas, cowanyoung, slimy mackerel and silver trevally, a simple fixed loop rig is all that is required. Tie on a small swivel in 12-17lb mono or fluorocarbon leader, 10cm down from swivel make a 15cm or so sized loop for sinker/lead attachment. This is best tied with a simple figure eight knot. Extend leader a metre from the swivel, cut, and attach the hook. Hooks are many and varied for different bait offerings, however most patterns around a size 6/0 will work best for all small species mentioned, and size 4/0 for snapper. DL: It’s all dependant on where you are planning on fishing. Channel fishing on the southern Mornington Peninsula or off the Bellarine Peninsula in the Western Channel or Symonds channel requires the ‘Western Port’ rig. North of these areas, it’s all lightly weighted stuff, so realistically, you can get away with knowing the two main rigs. Is there any problem with pre-made rigs? SF: I think the convenience of them is ideal for many anglers who may be pressed for time or may not be as proficient rigging gear up. Over the years, there have been many fine captures of snapper using pre tied rigs, but I’ve never

bothered with them, as I much prefer to tie up my own as required. Typically I’ll tie up a few leader/hook set ups once at home, then these are stored in a rig type wallet/folder. This cuts down on lost time should a rig need replacing while out fishing. It is well worth the time to pre tie your own rigs up for the season if possible. DL: Pre-made rigs are OK. The best of them are those that come with just a length of leader, two hooks, with the top one snelled but no swivel or sinker. This allows you to turn them into a lightly weighted rig for northern Port Phillip or a Western Port style rig using a sinker slider or Ezi-Rig. So while they are technically pre-made, you still have to do some work. Both Icon and Gamakatsu now have these on the market and are my choice if I’m using premade rigs. What is your preferred hook? SF: For snapper and mulloway I use a 4/0 octopus style hook, as opposed to gummy shark fishing where I prefer a single circle in size 8/0. The 4/0 for snapper has proven very reliable over the years, so I have no need to change yet. DL: My favourite hooks are the Konan 5/0 Beak Hook for the lightly weighted rig, and a Konan 6/0 Mutu Light for the heavier rig for tidal water like the southern part of Port Phillip Bay. The Konan 6/0 is also ideal for Western Port. How important is

fluorocarbon leader when snapper fishing? SF: I’ve used it here and there with no appreciable rise in catch rates. However, it is good for abrasion  resistance  and longevity over the more common soft style leader material. I also feel its extra  stiffness can be an advantage in less tidal waters such as Port Philip Bay. DL: I am not a huge fan of fluorocarbon when fishing for snapper. The main reason being that the heavier fluorocarbon leaders are hard to tie knots in. I prefer a supple leader like the 40lb Icon. I don’t believe fluoro has a huge impact on catch rates when bait fishing for snapper. There is a reasonably simple formula to take out of all this; be mindful of the little things like leader and hook sharpness. Taking the time to ensure your rigs are well tied and prepared correctly, along with the right set up for where you are fishing, will increase your chances tenfold. What do I think of pre tied snapper rigs? I always drop a couple either side of the boat when anchored fishing for snapper. I feel it could be an attractant if nothing else, I feel similarly about casting soft plastics around when anchored, it all helps to create a bit of excitement around the area you are fishing. All in all, good luck out there whichever rig you decide to run with, and have a great time fishing. That’s what it’s all about!

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Dan Lee loves lightly weighted rigs in his home waters of Port Phillip Bay.

Finessing the heavyweights NSW STH COAST

Steve Starling

The concept of finesse fishing doesn’t only apply to the lighter end of the

sense approach to landing fish. There’s no point in hooking lots if they all get away. Most of us can afford to err a little more on the finesse side when we wet a line. You might think that

sub-surface swimbaits are the next major trend following hot-on-the-heels of the wake bait boom. Much of this development is being spearheaded by savvy anglers targeting lunker cod on Copeton Dam,

The author with a solid topwater cod taken on a tweaked Jackall Mikey Snr and relatively light gear. Note that a set of hooks was discarded when upgrading this wake bait’s hardware, to maintain balance and buoyancy. fishing spectrum. It can also pay big dividends when dealing with our true heavyweights! “Finesse fishing” has become my personal mantra over the past few decades – I’m always banging on about it. In a nutshell, I firmly believe you’ll hook more fish in every scenario by fishing lighter, finer, longer, stealthy and smart. Naturally, this quest for finesse needs to be balanced with a common

throwing massive wake and swimbaits intended to tempt mega Murray cod would be about the last area of our sport that could possibly benefit from the application of finesse, but you’d be wrong! The booming fishery for XOS Murray cod using bulky topwater offerings such as surface walkers, chuggers and jointed wake baits is definitely the latest big thing to grip the Australian freshwater scene. Oversized

near Inverell, in the New England region of NSW, but the effectiveness of these lure types isn’t limited to that fishery alone. Similar opportunities exist in cod impoundments all the way from Glenlyon to Blowering, Burrinjuck to Wyangala and Mulwala to Eildon, not to mention in the major rivers of the Murray/Darling basin, as well as some of their smaller feeders and anabranches – just about anywhere

big cod live. How do you apply the concept of finesse to a fishery that’s based on bruising, metre-something kegs of fish exploding all over 20cm+ lures that typically weigh 70-250g and are most often cast off serious, double-handed baitcasters or saltwater strength spinning gear? It’s easy – finesse doesn’t necessarily mean soft or lightweight. Instead, the term refers to cunning, subterfuge, balance and power. In fact, finesse could well be regarded as the martial arts of fishing. Like most other anglers serious about catching big cod on these lures, I started out using 50-70lb braid and 60lb (30kg) mono leaders of either nylon or fluorocarbon. Cod might not be the hardest fighters in our waters on a kilofor-kilo basis, but a big one hooked close to cover can brick you as fast as any snag-loving fish. I still use the gear I’ve described in the sticks. However, I’ve come to realise that a

Achieving the right action can make a huge difference on the day. Lighter gear helps. I’ve taken to running 20lb braid and relatively short 30-50lb (15-25kg) leaders in these open waters, enjoying longer casts and better lure action as a result.

around with the hardware on my lures, but that’s a story for a future column! Truth is, there are always facets of our fishing we can fine tune and improve, with direct benefits

It seems counter-intuitive to use the word ‘finesse’ when referring to beasts like this monster Copeton cod that Jo Starling tamed, but the concept still has relevance at this end of the scale. Lure is a JJ’s Plague Mouseful wake bait.

Cod don’t generally demand barra-strength lure fittings. There’s a fine balance between power and finesse.



great deal of the best wake and swimbaiting for cod, especially at dawn, dusk and through the night, tends to take place in relatively open water adjacent to bare banks and weed beds. You don’t need to load for bear in these scenarios.

That’s practical finesse at work. The application of finesse in this way can transform a blank session into one that produces a strike, or turn a half-hearted boil and rejection into a fullblooded take. This is just the beginning. I’ve been playing

in terms of our overall catch rates. That’s the true meaning of finesse. Remember, the closed season on Murray cod remains in force on most waters until December 1, but there’s no closed season in Lakes Copeton or Eildon.

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Fishing is now on the rise at the Glenelg River WEST COAST

Shane Lowery

November is one of the best months of the year to fish the Glenelg as we begin the transition out of spring into summer. As

events spread out, there was a fluctuation in flow and water levels as each pulse made its way down river. The general result was fast flow and dirty water, which makes fishing pretty tough for bait and lure fishers alike. These conditions are actually

into all the catchments in the region, including places like Rocklands Reservoir at the head of the Glenelg River. This will give some water security to the region and allow for environmental flows into the Glenelg when it’s needed to help maintain river health in the upper regions. Rocklands should also reach the trigger point required to allow water to be sent to Toolondo, which is in dire need of water to maintain the viability of the waterway. November will see a change in the patterns of the last few months – a shift from fishing deeper holes and drop

offs back to the long awaited edge bite that lure fishers keenly await each year. Both bream and perch will move up into the shallows. Cast lightly weighted soft plastics and shallow to mid diving hardbodies. These are deadly techniques at this time of year. With the river dropping back in flow a little later than usual this year, expect areas like Taylors Strait through to Sapling Creek to be the prime section of the river to target. Rock walls are a good place to start and often bream can be seen feeding right up on the edge, indicating a great area to cast lures or

Brad Hodges holding a 45cm fork length EP. These fish are moving back onto the edges during November. the weather warms up, so does the fishing. The last few months saw one of the wettest winters in many years and the result was massive run off and inflows into all the rivers across the South West, putting many of them into flood. With several large rain

ideal for the spawning of both bream and estuary perch and will pay off big time in the next few years. It also serves to give the rivers a great flush out. Once things settle back down again I’d expect the fishing to be exceptional. The much needed rains have also helped put water

The author with a cracking Glenelg River bream.

Clint Northcott and an average-sized Glenelg mulloway. November could see some bigger models in the estuary. throw bait in close. Estuary perch will also be on the chew and the same techniques for light plastics and shallow hards are ideal. Targeting heavy timber snags and overhanging vegetation tends to be more productive than rock walls for perch, as these ambush predators like to hide deep in the structure. We haven’t seen a run of big mulloway in the system yet, but November holds promise of seeing the big ones turn up after the great flush of fresh we’ve had this year. They’re best targeted in the deeper holes of the

estuary with vibes and larger hardbodies. Live mullet fished under a float are also very successful. Keep in mind, you can drop off any bagged mulloway frames after you’ve filleted them to the kiosk in Nelson to be collected by Lauren Veale as part of her citizen science research program into the genetics of these elusive fish. This is very valuable research. I’d encourage anyone who’s lucky enough to catch a mulloway and decides to keep rather release to donate the frame to a great cause.

Plenty of big fish options despite the floods WARRNAMBOOL

Mark Gercovich

The best thing about fishing South West Victoria is the massive variety of angling options available across the course of the year. This has proved to be

the case recently as, even with serious flood waters affecting all local rivers, there has been some first class angling. A series of significant rain events during September put all the local waterways in high flood with plumes of dirty water extending well out to sea. Even though local rivers

fish well for trout during times of high flow, most rivers were running well too fast and high even for productive trout fishing. Good trout fishing should be an option right through November as the rivers should be still flowing well, particularly when compared to this time last year when we had very little rain. With the


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Monster Purrumbete browns – Nick Murrell with a 5.9kg and Jo Rowland with a 4.8kg fish. rivers out of action, there’s been another venue for keen trout anglers to focus on with nearby Lake Purrumbete producing trophy fish. The fish have not been easy, but with most browns weighing in around the 4kg mark, the effort is definitely worth it. These trophy fish have been in great condition and put on a serious display once hooked. The biggest ones to be landed so far have been Nick Murrell’s 5.9kg and new Purrumbete caravan park owner, John Clements’ 5.8kg fish. The new 95mm Daiwa double clutch lures have

been dynamite on the troll, while the 75mm model and Gulp Smelt soft plastics have been the go-to lures on the cast. Bait anglers have been having success on the browns with gudgeon under a float. The odd big chinook has been taken on deep set baits like pilchard fillets. The other big fish option has been the barrel tuna. Last year’s late season barrel tuna run has repeated itself again, without the long periods of fine flat weather from this time last year. Most fish have been in the Portland and Port MacDonnell region, but there have been fish taken locally

like the 118kg model taken by Dan Hoey of Salty Dog Charters. With the school tuna having moved on, it can take dedication to put in a long day trolling. Once again, the rewards are there for those who persist. The other productive option for these flood times has been quality school and gummy sharks taken offshore. November is usually always a fantastic month for fishing locally. It should be especially intriguing this year, after the flood water recedes, to see what effect it has on the fishing.

Waterways start livening up PORTLAND

Chris Hall

The fishing has been pretty good over the past month. There are still bluefin over 100kg being taken between Lawrence Rocks and Cape Bridgewater in depths of 60-80m. One of the best lures has been the Bluedog BabyJ. Guys who haven’t been chasing the bluefin have been catching good size flathead off Cape Bridgewater. One

We can expect more catches of calamari squid in November. Photo courtesy of Peter Jung. of the best lure types has been the octo jig. Just put a strip of squid on the hook,

It’s a lot of fun chasing bream from a kayak. A jerkbait was the undoing of this fish.

drop it down and give it a couple of jigs. The flathead love them. Along with the flatties, anglers have been getting gummies and school sharks in depths of 60-85m. Most are caught on arrow squid or California squid. Off the lighthouse there’s a good mix of species – snapper, morwong nannygai, pearl perch, and the odd gummy and school shark. Between Point Danger and Pivot Beach, anglers have been getting into the salmon using the trusty pilchards on a paternoster rig, or surf poppers. There’s also the odd King George whiting around too, taking pipis and strips of squid. Heading down along the north shore there’s garfish and calamari squid, with

As tough as they come

most of the squid taken on a spike rigged with a pilchard or a sand whiting under a float. When it comes to jigs, most people have been going for Shimano Egixiles or Yamashita Egi Oh Qs. The best colours are white or darker colours, depending on the day. Along with the garfish and squid, there are also a few King George whiting about, plus the odd gummy and school shark. Land-based anglers fishing off the Lee Breakwater have been getting salmon, cuda and calamari squid. There’s also the chance of a snapper or King George whiting. Around the harbour we’re seeing bream, trevally, yakkas, calamari squid, King George whiting and pinkie snapper. Up in the freshwater, the Fitzroy and Surrey river been yielding bream and mullet. Baitfishers have been getting their bream on grassies and prawns, while lure fishers have been doing well on Strike Pro vibes and Gulp Sandworms in camo. NOVEMBER FORECAST During November the water temperature will rise significantly. Late November should see the kingfish start to

Now with

Another nice calamari squid destined for the table. Photo courtesy of Peter Jung. arriving down the north shore. By this time the bluefin will probably be making their way back through the west, so the action should slow down. By contrast, the King George whiting should thicken up, along with the calamari squid and snapper. Other species should start livening up as well as we progress into the warmer months. There’ll be makos out in the deep, and guys heading out to the shelf will start targeting blue-eye trevalla,

ling and blue grenadier in around 200-600m of water. On the way back from the shelf, in depths of around 150m, there will be Tassie trumpeter, good size flathead, gummies and schoolies. For all the up-to-date information on what’s whiting and where, drop into Portland Bait & Tackle at 111 Bentinck St, Portland, give them a call on (03) 5523 5213, or look them up on Facebook. The staff are experts and there’s a great range of gear.

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Apollo Bay is heating up APOLLO BAY

Wayne Diffey

With all of this crazy weather this past month, there hasn’t been a lot of days where boats could get out of Apollo Bay for a fish. When they’ve been able to get out, there have been good catches of gummies, schoolies and decent-sized flatties. Cape Patton and the Blanket Bay Reef have been very productive for gummies and schoolies in 40-50m of water. Con from

Hit N Run Charters reported a bag of three nicely sized gummies recently, with a 20kg schoolie a few days earlier. He also said they got some good snapper with one coming in just over 3kg. They were fishing the change of tide using fresh cut bait like salmon and calamari. The salmon still remain very patchy off the beaches. Wild Dog Creek Beach is the best of the local spots. If you want to go for a bit of a drive, Johana Beach has been fishing better for the salmon. A paternoster rig, single or double is the

best setup, with bait such as bluebait or squid. I prefer to spin off the beach or rocks for the salmon myself, using metal lures like a Juro laser lure, or my favourite, the Halco Streaker. Local streams and rivers are still flowing well with all of the recent rains, and we are now seeing plenty of baitfish, smelt and galaxia moving upstream. This should really fire up the trout and bream. It would be well worth a trip and casting a few minnow style lures, either hardbodies like Ecogear SX40 and Yo-Zuri

A cracker 20kg school shark caught on a charter off Blanket Bay.

Nice local brown trout caught on a Yo-Zuri Pin’s Minnow.

Pin’s Minnow, or some minnow style soft plastics like Berkley PowerBait Minnow. Local Andy Orchard caught a nice brown trout using a Pin’s Minnow in ghost colour. Still plenty of King George whiting are about just off the Bumbry Reef and Marengo with pipis as the preferred bait. There could also be a few kingfish around, as one local recently fishing for whiting got completely spooled in a

matter of seconds. November should see an improvement in the weather with a bit of an increase in the water temperature. With this the calamari in the Apollo Bay Harbour should become a bit more plentiful. Early morning or late evening are the best times. Squid jigs in the more natural colours usually work well. Choose the size and weight of your squid jig based on the tides at the time. November also sees the

southern rock lobster and abalone season opening mid month. Before you don your dive gear and go hunting, be sure to check out all of the latest rules and regulations for both of these, as not following these can prove costly. If you’re coming to Apollo Bay for a fish, be sure to pop in to get all you bait and tackle needs, as well as an up to date report. Call us on 03-52376426, or check out our website:

Floods will settle, as spring turns to petal COBDEN

Rod Shepherd

Recent months saw the solid winter rainfall reach a climax with heavy falls inundating the South West along with most of Victoria. The storms not only kept all of our estuaries open to the sea but put them back into flood once again. This made fishing rather hard, especially chasing a bream or three, but that doesn’t have to be the case. The floodwaters exiting our estuaries are concentrating the bream, estuary perch and other species right down near the mouth. Right now is a bait angler’s paradise.

Commercially caught frozen baits such as prawn, fillets of pilchard, strips of squid and pipi meat are great. Odorous baits such as these will attract interest and if that happens to be mullet and small salmon, they can be turned into bream bait as well. Fresh fillets of salmon and mullet stripped up with the skin left on and baited on the hook, much like a worm, can be deadly on bream. Certain local anglers have been doing this in the Curdies River or more accurately, the bottom reaches of Peterborough Lake. Launching a boat at the town ramp and only moving a hundred or so metres up and down the channel tying onto the numerous channel marker poles depending on what the tide is doing has

been the go. Local angler Jim Murfitt and company have been bagging out on solid bream of late. Two anglers in a boat baitfishing and not moving far at all have landed 20 bream in a single session. Many anglers have experienced similar success.

Even bank anglers willing to move along the channel and fish the fresh versus salt wedge, depending on the tide, have also landed bream. The Gellibrand River is still under the influence of a major fresh all of which is literally gushing out of the Otway Ranges and is

The author’s boat at the Peterborough boat ramp at low tide. No luck that day!

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best avoided until the flood waters calm down. The offshore scene has been relatively quiet. Boaters have managed to launch off Boat Bay near Peterborough and have latched on to excellent school shark, as well as the odd gummy. Quality squid baits are the go and the

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by-catch can come in the form of huge leatherjackets and pinkie snapper. Those in the know have motored westwards toward Warrnambool where some excellent flathead grounds exist. A predominantly sandy bottom interspersed with a bit of weed holds serious sand flathead in deeper than normal waters where one would usually work over. When the ocean temperature begins to rise, this area, a closely guarded secret among a few, can also hold decent King George whiting in excess of 40cm. When it stops raining for a day and the sun comes out, we’ve had lovely, warm spring weather. Hopefully this will only increase as we inevitably make our way towards summer.

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Removing the goggles and flippers after the wet GEELONG

Neil Slater

The region’s residents are removing their goggles and flippers and emerging from what can only be described as a very wet lead up to the warmer months, with spring providing some of the best rainfall we’ve seen in years. Lakes that were dustbowls over summer have copped a drenching and a lot of the region’s water supplies have made a dramatic comeback. Water at Lake Moddewarre had almost reached the old breakwall and Murdeduke, although still very low, was receiving massive inflows from Mia Mia Creek. Both of these lakes yielded salmonids in excess of 5kg in the early 1990s – let’s hope it is the beginning of something big! The Barwon River in Geelong burst its banks and looked like coffee, so fishing has been tough on the freshwater scene in Geelong. Wurdee Boluc Reservoir near Moriac also copped it. The water here was quite dirty and rising fast. Lure fishing at Wurdee has been

Check out the Surf Coast estuaries for bream during November. difficult at best although a few persistent anglers caught fat redfin to 45cm casting soft plastic lures and retrieving them slowly along the bottom. Cunningham Pier saw an influx of yellow-eyed mullet with a few anglers getting stuck into plenty over the last month. They were not too

big, but a heck of a lot of fun on light gear! At last, there has been some snapper action inside Corio Bay with a couple of ripper fish around 7kg being caught out off Portarlington and Clifton Springs. The Geelong waterfront has also seen some quality snapper caught, which has got plenty

of fishers excited. I fished inside Corio Bay with Hugh Hanson last month, where we flicked a few plastics around Curlewis then back into the Geelong waterfront. Hugh caught a couple of calamari, plus some undersized flatties, but that was it for us. The area around Cunningham Pier was busy

with boaters in search of that big snapper with about seven or eight boats in between Cunningham Pier and the Royal Geelong Yacht Club. Clifton Springs is producing plenty of calamari for those drifting the shallow weed beds. I fished there last month with Hugh Hanson again and work colleague Adam Jordan. We hit patches of squid where we had triple hook-ups and they were not fussy at all with colour or type of jig used. We ended up with 16 calamari between the three of us in a couple of hours. The best calamari were about 30cm hood length and there were a few small ones amongst them. We had the best bites in 2.2-2.8m of water and nothing at all from about 4m of water. All this was within 200m of the boat ramp over the weed beds. Rod Ludlow from Beachlea Boat Hire at Indented Head says the squid have not stopped with plenty of boats bagging out over any of the weed beds and reef areas in between St Leonards and Steeles Rocks at Portarlington. He notes that they have been biting all day, but dawn and dusk are still a standout. There has also been

plenty of flathead caught by anglers drifting off Indented Head and St Leonards while land-based anglers have done well catching squid from St Leonards Pier. Rod had one boat bag out on whiting from 35-37cm just out off St Leonards in about 4m of water using pipis as bait. Rod says that although a few whiting have been caught in close, and the best spots have been between 8-12m of water off Indented Head and the Prince George Light. Both tides have been doing equally well with squid and pipis the best bait. Flathead have been biting well for anglers drifting the deeper areas between Indented Head and St Leonards. The last month or so has been tough to get out on the Bellarine Peninsula due to the weather but the calamari fishing has been epic. Some rippers with hood lengths over 40cm have been caught by anglers drifting in the Lonsdale Bight, near Bell Reef and the grass beds just north of the Queenscliff Harbour entrance. Some have also shown up in the Queenscliff harbour and can be caught by anglers walking the piers.

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John Albrecht from Torquay Angling Club reports there have been a few salmon caught between 1-2kg by anglers fishing Jan Juc Surf Beach. There have also been a few gummy and school sharks caught out off Torquay and a couple of snapper have turned up but have been a bit patchy. John notes that the King George whiting have also been a bit hard to find out off Torquay lately but the wind has kept most inshore. A lot of the West Coast estuaries have really been firing as the mouths have opened up. John Albrecht has been fishing a few down the coast where he has enjoyed a couple of quality bream to 40cm using soft plastic lures. John says the local fish will happily take a frozen prawn, garden worm or lure. The Anglesea River burst out to sea after some big rains and had another fish kill. Mick Allardyce was down at the mouth as it opened and noted that stacks of bream were heading out to sea. Mick said that the fish ranged from as small as 5cm to a respectable 30cm, which he helped on their way. Mick also notes that the salmon fishing has been tough locally but Port Fairy has good schools of fish either side of 1kg in close enough for beach fishos to

should try the rocks near St Helens and North Shore. Cunningham Pier, Point Henry, Portarlington and St Leonards piers dawn and dusk all have snapper captures each year and are worth a look. Those keen on surf tackle should try Jan Juc, Bancoora and Thirteenth Beach at dusk for salmon and snapper while after dark should see a gummy or snapper in November. If the Barwon estuary clears up, give the incoming tide

a go for silver trevally and salmon while the outgoing should see a few whiting near the mouth. That’s it for this month! Make sure you stay safe out there - the miserable winter may have ended, but the weather can change at any time. Otherwise, enjoy the warm weather that November usually dishes out. The snapper rseason has reached its peak, so it would almost be a sin not to get out on th water for a feed of


tasty reds! FISH HARD – DIE HAPPY! • Catch a few around Geelong, Bellarine Peninsula or Surf Coast to Lorne recently? Send in a report to au with VFM in the subject field or give me a call on 0408 997 348. Please include where (without giving away your secret spot!), when, what on and who caught the fish. Pictures are always great, but please make sure they are at least 1mb (file size).

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from The Bellarine has been invaded by squid! flick lures at them. TIPS FOR NOVEMBER Hit the snapper with a run up! This is their peak period, so let the lawn grow and get out on the water! After dark is often best, with baits such as pilchards, fresh

squid, silver whiting and fish heads. Fish unweighted baits where possible, but if you’re in strong current, extend your leader out over 1m if you’re in a boat. Land-based fishos


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As the river runs brown PORT PHILLIP WEST

Andy Smith

Spring has taken its time to fire up. With huge late winter downpours across the state and the metro catchment, fishing has been for the super keen. Rewards are there, if you’re persistent and spend the effort. The huge amount of water pouring

and the chocolate water and still come up trumps. Alan Bonnici, truly FishingMad akin to his website, has used the high and dirty rivers to his advantage and fished the backwater areas of lesser flow. Areas like Williamstown have been his saving grace in the horrid weather. Alan’s regular dedication to getting out and wetting a line shows, with consistent catches of bream in the Maribyrnong over

fishing trips in the short windows between the ordinary weather. Dean Yeoman and his young son Lincoln, one of the keenest and most passionate junior anglers I’ve ever met, have had great fishing land-based in the far west of the bay around Geelong. Using premium quality bait has proved the difference lately when conditions have been marginal. Premium pilchards and Marty Baker with a cracking 77cm early season snapper.

Filthy water and horrid winds still produce the goods for clever anglers. Photo courtesy of Alan Bonnici.

into our catchments is sensational for the long term health of our rivers and the bay, but spare a thought for many land owners and farmers that have copped the rough end of the stick. Drought-like conditions and a serious lack of water have been overrun with torrential rain cells dumping rain for days on end. While many anglers have written off the local rivers for the immediate time, a few diehards have stuck it out, braved the weather, the cold, the rain

recent months and pinkies further downstream and into the Hobsons Bay area. There’s nothing better than angler reports, especially when they’re honest. One of Alan’s recent reports displayed his dedication in bucket loads! It simply read, “Was caught in the impossible conditions today at Williamstown. Blowing a gale, current super strong, and water was brown due to all the rain but still managed some nice pinkies.” Other thinking anglers have continued to slot in

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the bay are frequented by passionate and dedicated anglers. When the next load of ordinary weather hits, try hitting the open windy and rough locations. Even better, use the coverage of the dirty water and the edges of these areas to target big land-based snapper. From now until the end of the year, Port Melbourne, Hobsons Bay, Williamstown and through to Altona are extremely likely to produce quality fishing. Snapper, like any predatory fish, use cover to their advantage. The dirty fresh water throughout the surface provides plenty of shelter and coverage for them to move into shallow areas with confidence. The rough and dirty conditions, coupled with large volumes of water pushed into the bay that wash food in and concentrate the baitfish. For those anglers in boats, the entire shallow reef areas that run from Hobsons Bay through to Point Cook will be holding quality fish. An essential tactic to increase your chances is to fish

unweighted baits. Some of the reef is renowned for resulting in countless lost rigs and terminals. Berley will bring the big fish near you, but go sparingly over the shallow grounds. It’s a fine balance between attracting the millions of baby juvenile snapper, flathead, salmon, pike and assorted odd reef fish in the bay, and attracting that fish of a lifetime lurking in the waters less than 10m in depth. As always, it’s well worth a sound and search over the deeper mudflat areas. Don’t be a sheep and get attracted to the flotilla. Snapper can swim and if you present a bait in your own berley trail, your chances of red success are well and truly increased. There are wide expansive areas that these fish graze around and if the last three years are anything to go by, the huge concentrations of baitfish will see the quality snapper continually move and hunt. The best anglers outsmart them – be in that group with good preparation and switched on tactics.

The smile says it all – congratulations, Lincoln Yeoman.

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squid saw the boys sorting through plenty of small flathead before some good eating size models appeared. Lincoln once again showed why he continually out-fishes his father who clearly taught him too well, by landing a lovely pinkie of 1.6kg in shallow conditions. They used the coverage of first light to their advantage, hitting the water at 5.30am. Not to be outdone, Dean provided the largest capture of the day, with a 1.7kg gurnard, a species more regularly seen outside Port Phillip Bay. However, Dean forgot one thing, the nasty spikes that these fish possess – ouch. I hope it’s healed

up Deano! Another member of the Didyabringyarodalong Angling Club, Johnny Humphries landed a lovely pinkie just shy of 2kg, along with a solid flathead from Cunningham Pier in Geelong. Marty Baker and his wife headed out recently. While conditions were overcast they compiled a lovely bag of calamari around Point Cook and then settled on some solid structure in 19m of water wide off Point Cook. Marty landed a fantastic snapper measuring in at 77cm on a cocktail bait of fresh calamari and pilchard. One of the keys to quality land-based fishing around Melbourne is weather and water conditions. The biggest wind and rain storms can really turn it on. Renowned locations around

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Springtime red-emption PORT PHILLIP NE

Wayne Friebe

Even though I reported with much pleasure that, spring had definitely arrived in last month’s VFM, the weather treatment authority has certainly handed out a few timely reminders of the past over the last month for anglers on PPB. Typical of our spring weather patterns, a normal week can and will vary between glorious blue-sky days with no wind, to gale force winds with mountainous seas and horizontal rain. Sometimes this all happens in one day! All joking aside, the smaller windows of weather and

opportunity are prime times to get out on the bay and get amongst the action, and these times will get more common and last longer the closer we get to the summer months. For all of us true blue Victorians, and especially those who live in and around the bays, this time of year is all about snapper. When I was growing up in Western Port as a kid, the end of the footy season was the signal to start getting the gear together, and Cup Weekend was the big trigger for many anglers as well. Not much has changed these days for most of the snapper heads, only that more and more anglers are getting amongst the action earlier, and even right through winter, with great results. I’ve had a big rush of

reports coming in over the past month, and especially over the last few weeks. Last month, the AFL Grand Final had just been won and heaps of boats and land-based anglers are hitting the bays in earnest. What’s been very encouraging so far has been the amount of good quality snapper already being taken by anglers fishing lures and soft plastics around reefy areas, especially fishing from kayaks, and smaller tournament style boats. I’ve had reports of several fish being taken around the 6-7kg mark and lots more in the 3-5kg range as well. You need to put up with the smaller fish at the same time, and they can be pretty annoying at times. But when the big one grabs your lure, you’ll know about it, they really pull the kinks

Jim ‘Uncle Ron’ Xyga holds a ripper early season red taken while fishing a soft plastic close to the inshore reef, which was estimated at over 6kg in weight. woods as well. Areas close to and around prominent reef

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good fishing, and the good thing about that is, most PPB anglers couldn’t give a toss about anything else but snapper! For those who do, I’m very happy to report that the early season whiting action has continued over the past month, especially in the south of the bay, and many of the popular summer areas along the eastern shoreline are already starting to produce. For many of us (especially me), this news is equal to that of good snapper fishing, and many believe that this season will be another good one in PPB. Lets hope so! The squid are also really starting to load up on

our local reefs and further inshore, and will continue to do so in the months ahead. I have already noticed that they have been hanging around in tight groups, which is probably due to the proximity and timing of spawning areas, and also that they are loving green and red jigs at the moment. No doubt the great fishing we have experienced already in the bay is only the beginning of things to come for the rest of this year. Here’s hoping that your humble author can keep getting out amongst the action, and that the weather gods are kind. Keep the reports coming in!

FISHING FILL-ITS Even the author got amongst the snapper action recently on a hot afternoon bite fishing in shallow water.

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out of your line! Keep an eye on your sounder, and stay close to structure. Peak bite times will be early and late in the day. The usual areas up north near the mouth of the Yarra and further south are producing well, and there are also plenty of reds down our neck of the

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and other structure will be key zones over the next month or so. Not to be outdone, the bait anglers have been getting amongst the snapper action as well. Many of Matt Cini’s customers on Reel Time Charters have been walking away with big smiles with some ripper fish up to and over 7kg. Many of these fish have been coming in from the Mount Martha area, and I have also had several reports of good fish coming from around Mornington as well. Expect the usual landbased areas to be very productive over the next couple of months, especially during and after big onshore winds. Also expect the wider grazing areas to become more heavily populated as we move into summer, as the snapper will tend to leave the protection of the structure and look to put on condition before they spawn. As always at this time of year, I run out of room to write about all the other

Night patrol nets illegal abalone harvest Three men leaving a Mornington Peninsula beach have allegedly been found in possession of 169 abalone, of which more than one third were undersize. Acting Director of Fisheries Education and Enforcement, Brooke Hall, said the men were apprehended by Fisheries Officers as they left Number 16 Beach at Rye shortly after 11pm last Thursday. “An inspection of the men’s four wheel drive vehicle revealed the illegal catch,” Mr Hall said. “The men, aged 32, 36 and 40 from Malvern, Mount Waverley and Vermont South were not deterred from fishing in what were cold, rough and windy conditions.” The men will be charged on summons with: • Taking a commercial quantity of abalone during the closed season • Taking abalone from the protected intertidal zone • Taking and possessing undersize abalone • Taking abalone after sunset. Fisheries Officers returned

all 169 abalone to the water later the same night given they were still in their shell, however their survival rate is uncertain. Mr Hall said recreational fishers could harvest abalone from Central Victorian waters, but that catch limits, equipment restrictions and a closed season applied to ensure the fishery remained sustainable. “Fishers may take 5 abalone per day on nominated open days in Central Victorian waters. “The minimum legal size is 10cm within Port Phillip Bay and 11cm elsewhere in Central Victorian waters, including Number 16 Beach at Rye.” Other rules apply and are outlined in the Recreational Fishing Guide. People who see or suspect illegal fishing activity are encouraged to call 13FISH (133474) anytime. In circumstances where officers can’t respond to a call, the information provided is valuable and helps plan future patrols. – ECODEV

Big abundant snapper month PORT PHILLIP EAST

Lee Rayner

Awful weather smashed us during October, but in between the bad there’s been plenty of good. Exceptional snapper have been taken over the past weeks, with multiple fish over 10kg in weight. Interestingly, the ones I’ve seen have been taken by land-based anglers. While bad weather over the past weeks has been great for land-based fishing, boat anglers are getting plenty of fish too. Let’s hope that the coming weeks see a solid bout of good weather so everyone can get out on the water more and get into the snapper. On another note, there’s no doubt that the fishing has so far been better than last season, which to be honest, was a long way off being amazing. The really interesting part is that fisheries said that last season and the one before were not going to be great, due to the lack of spawn recruitment 8-10yrs ago, which are now the fish that come into the bay in big numbers to spawn. They said this season would be a lot better than the previous two and over the next three seasons, fishing will get better each year – it’s all to do with the spawn and recruitment in earlier years. MORDIALLOC TO BLACK ROCK On with the good info on the fishing front –

good numbers of pinkies and plenty of big snapper have been taken off the pier over the past weeks. Any good onshore blow has anglers lined up for the abundant reds that move into the area to feed. While this action often slows for the land-based anglers, it’s well worth getting on the pier during a good southwesterly blow. Out in the boats, many anglers are reporting a really good old season feel. Solid fish can be found in the shallow water in 5-10m during low light periods and rough weather. Work out deeper during the morning and day, as big catches are coming from out on the 20-80m area off Mordialloc and up to Black Rock. Other prime areas to fish are the 14-16m line that runs through Mordialloc and up past Ricketts Point. This area has lots of broken ground and blue mussel beds that tend to not only attract the snapper, but also hold them there for periods of time. A top area for baitfishing, it’s also a productive part of the bay for lure fishing. Anglers have great success on soft plastics and small metal jigs. On the bait front the good old pilchard has been catching plenty, as it always does. As the water warms this month, silver whiting will really start to play a big part in anglers’ success, especially on bigger snapper. Through November its time to

be getting out wider, especially during the day to fish the famous deeper areas known as the Gasso and further north to the edge of the shipping lane. In this area, I like to find bait near the bottom. If I mark one or two fish nearby, I anchor up and get the berley going – quite often there’ll be a few fish in the area. SANDRINGHAM TO ST KILDA This area has been a standout over the past weeks with loads of snapper taken in this part of the bay. Land-based anglers have been getting big numbers of snapper through this area for weeks. Best of all, its not just about being on the Brighton Breakwall or the Rock Groynes at Hampton. They’ve been great, but we’ve also received several awesome reports from anglers fishing off the nearby rocky shoreline, even on the sand and when it’s rough. Out a bit wider, boat anglers have had good success in the dawn period between the Anonyma Shoal and further north along that line with bigger fish in the 4-7kg bracket. If it’s numbers you’re after then the edge of the shipping channel from T1 up to the Fawkner Beacon has held schools of fish in big numbers. This month should see some red hot fishing during the afternoons and into the evenings. Up off North Road and


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freshwater competitions, saltwater competitions, and prize competitions. All the while showing comps with lucrative incentives and record prize money for winners. There’s an All events Calender – showing all comps created on iFishComps, and displaying the nearest comps to you first. COMPETITION Whether you are a competition organizer, a professional, or new to fishing, iFishComps will help you to see all competitions available and interact with iFishComps Community. You will be able to: Create competitions – with a full profile containing all details about location, date and time, your contact details, a gallery for images and videos about the competition. Join competitions – you can join any competition you

like, post catches and tag the competition for people to see your achievements, as well as liking catches posted by other participants. Finally, you can follow competitions – by adding a competition to your wish list you will be able to see the updates, and check the catches and progress of it. SHARE YOUR CATCHES WITH THE WORLD You can share your best catches on iFishComps, with the option to share it on social media for your friends to see. You can post catches that you got in a competition that you joined on iFishComps, and state your location for everyone to see how good you are. You can also like catches posted by others. This is an exciting new innovation for the tournament fishing scene, make sure you get on it. – iFishcomps

towards St Kilda Marina, shallow reef areas are the place to find big snapper at night. Often, big numbers of 4-8kg fish move into these areas at night to feed on the heavy reef bottom that runs through here. In this area, it’s all about stealth, as you’re generally fishing in 4-6m of water. Keeping quiet and fishing unweighted baits is the key to good fish and stacks of fun. ST KILDA TO PORT MELBOURNE It never ceases to amaze me the way this part of the bay produces big fish. The past month has been no different with several 10kg fish taken up in this area. The breakwall at St Kilda has produced good reds in the rough weather with a lot of boat anglers fishing in close proximity to it and having good results on very solid runs of snapper. While they’ve been dong that, land-based anglers are getting their share off Kerford Rd, the lagoon and Station Pier. Out wider, bigger numbers of fish are to be found on the edge of the channel up at the Fawkner Beacon. For those who stay

Simon Murnane with a couple of snapper caught in 5m of water north of Corinella. While fishing the incoming tide with yakka and squid, Simon and his brother caught five solid fish and released a few fish as well. out at night, move back towards the shore to keep on the fish, as they move into the shallower water at night to feed. It’s a matter of repeating the process in reverse at pre-dawn and into the morning.

If you’re looking for another area to fish, it’s well worth a try around both sides of Princess Pier this month, especially in close to the shore in 4-8m of water. Have fun and get a bunch of snapper.










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Land-based fishing hits the spot right now MORNINGTON PENINSULA

Luke McCredden

With the football season finishing last month, anglers from all over the state have been getting out on the water more, especially with the weather slowly improving in temperature as well, besides a wet couple of months. Along with some fantastic snapper reports from the boaties, the land-based fishing for reds over the past month has been nothing short of sensational. Land-based fishing in general is really good right now and exciting for anglers without boats. SNAPPER Boaties had a great start over the last few weeks and decent breaks in the weather have meant the chance to soak baits. Anglers using hard baits like yakkas, silver whiting and even cuttlefish have found success. Fish whole baits out the back and drop paternoster or snapper snatcher style rigs straight down from the boat with strips of squid or pilchard chunks. A few smaller fish are being taken on this kind of rig. Anglers fishing early mornings under the cover of darkness have found good fish in the shallows of

Seaford and Frankston. This is also a great time to cast soft plastics. Squidgy Flick Baits are dominant again this year, as are the Whip Baits in pilly colour. Remember to fish as light as possible in the conditions you’re fishing, in regard to your jigheads. This allows a slow sink and plenty of time in the strike zone. SQUID There’s no shortage of southern calamari this spring. Lots of anglers are getting among some squid action. The usual haunts around Mornington and

Mount Martha have been great spots, especially from the land. Portsea and Queenscliff have proven once again great grounds for big squid, while areas off Blairgowrie and Sorrento are a real mixed bag. Dan Lee from Peninsula Compleat Angler reports, during some of the overcast days, it seems red foils and purple foils are much more effective than really bright colours. GARFISH The humble gars are elusive at the moment and inconsistent reports all year

Land-based anglers have been enjoying squid from the stones all year.

Jarrod Day from Compleat Angler has been finding good sized squid through spring.

The Shimano Bottomship Jig is a great lure to try for snapper this year.




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have made life tough when planning a trip out. Most recent success seems to be on piers all along the peninsula in late afternoon using light, crumb-like berley. One of the most important things when chasing garfish is the quality of your hook. Use small sharp hooks. Gars are skittish and will be easily turned off if they have a rough, blunt hook poke them in the face. Make the most of opportunities. Using quality sharp hooks will pin the fish first time, every time. Long shank hooks are good as they’re the easiest to remove from the fish once you’ve landed it. I would recommend silverfish as bait and fished under a lightweight pencil float. LOOKING AHEAD It’s crazy to imagine, but kingfish are not far away. Anglers will start to look soon, but I find this is the time to prepare and make sure your gear is up to scratch. If you got among the action last year, you might want to strip your line off and load up with brand new braid or mono. These fish do more damage than many anglers think. Before you know it, kings will be here and you’ll want to be a part of it! STAND-OUT SPECIES Snapper are on. The fish we love this time of year are chewing and we love it.

It’s not always epic sessions, but keep an eye on reports and use your electronics – you’ll soon find some. I love seeing the good number of

anglers trying their hands at lure fishing this year. Soft plastics, soft vibes and trolled hardbodies are definitely worth a go.

Jake with a beautiful snapper taken from a pier in the top part of Port Phillip Bay.


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Fishing Fill-its

Hooked on Bait and Tackle has moved on up The weekend of 8-9 October marked the grand opening of Hooked On Bait and Tackle at its new premises. It isn’t a big move, but it’s a significant upgrade in the size of the store for owner Michael Felsovary. They are now located at 174-180 Old Geelong Road, Hoppers

to do with the diversity of the range he stocks. There is an extensive range of game fishing lures, rigs, rods and reels for everything from tuna to broadbill swordfish. Then there are all the poppers and gear for targeting GTs and kingfish. It’s snapper time now and

while I was there. Freshwater fishing certainly isn’t forgotten, with live bait available as well as all the lures or terminal tackle you may need. Michael showed me a rod that he has had made up specifically for mudeye fishing. You could see the thought and effort that had gone into creating the rod, so if you’re an avid mudeye angler I suggest you go and see Michael and ask him about this rod. There’s so much more in the shop. There’s a huge range of reels from all the major brands, an extensive range of Japanese lures, plenty of accessories from landing nets to waders, sunglasses and clothing as well as two spooling machines to put that

line on your reel for you. I’ve missed plenty, so if you’re in the area, stop in and have a look for yourself. MICHAEL AND THE TEAM Having the range of products is only half the battle. There’s no point having all these products, without having experienced and knowledgeable staff. Between Michael, Mel and the rest of the crew, it’s obvious that they wanted to give each and every customer help if it was required. They also have a good understanding of fishing in the area. Many of the customers I spoke to were regular visitors to the store and they had nothing but good

The grand opening weekend was a huge success with everybody impressed by the size of the new store. Crossing. I was lucky enough to be there at the grand opening. RANGE Anybody that knows Michael knows that the reason something is stocked in his store is because the quality of the product is good and that it will be suited to the fishing in the area. His new shop definitely has the wow factor and much of that has

Hooked On Bait and Tackle has all the terminal tackle, outfits, bait and lures to set you up for success. If whiting, squid or bream fishing are more your style then once again the range of soft plastics, squid jigs and hardbody lures are there to meet your every need. His range of quality squid jigs is one of the best I’ve seen and I have to admit that I may have made a few purchases

You can’t miss the new location. It certainly stands out in more ways than one. things to say. AND THERE’S MORE Michael is a strong supporter of local fishing clubs, regularly allows them to hold meetings in the shop and has store specials on those nights. He also runs talk nights that are very popular. A recent broadbill swordfish night filled in a couple of days and the beauty of the new store is he has more room to

Hooked on Bait and Tackle will almost always have what you need.

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make these nights even bigger and better. Michael said there’s still lots more to come as far as the range and things he wants to do in the store. A stint in hospital just before he opened slowed him down a little. As he said to me, “watch this space”. You can contact the store on 03 9748 3811 or follow them on Facebook, Hooked On Bait and Tackle.

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Never get tired of Lake Tyers CRANBOURNE

Mitch Chapman

Only 3.5 hours from Melbourne and a short five-minute drive from the centre of Lakes Entrance, lies the ever-popular Lake Tyers. The reason Lake Tyers is so popular is the amount of species that are available on offer, with the

prized targets being bream and flathead. PRIME TIME Lake Tyers can be fished with great success all year round. Targeting flathead in the warmer months is best when the shallow water heats up and the fish become more active, basking in the sun waiting for an easy meal to swim by. Bream fishing is exceptional in the winter

months when the fish start to school up pre-spawn. Cricket scores of fish can be caught during this time of the year and can make for some top-notch fishing. THE GEAR Like most estuary fishing, a light 2-4kg graphite spin rod with a 2000 size reel is best when chasing bream and flathead. When targeting the abundant tailor, don’t forget

Some monster flathead, like this 93cm model the author caught, are a very welcome by-catch when targeting bream. The hardest part is keeping them connected on the light gear.

to use a wire trace otherwise it can become very expensive with the amount of lost lures. THE RIG A reel spooled up with 6lb braid and a long 4-6lb fluorocarbon leader is ideal for casting lures at bream. You might want to bump it up a little if fishing the snags, as light leader doesn’t last long around barnacle-encrusted snags. If specifically targeting flathead then 8-12lb leaders are a good starting point with a 1/8oz jighead and your favourite plastic tied on the end. BAIT AND LURES A couple of go-to lures for targeting flathead in the estuary are Squidgy Fish – grasshopper and poddy are very good replicas of mullet and proven flathead catchers. Softies for bream work well with Squidgy bloodworm Wrigglers in 80-100mm the first plastic to tie on and cast out. Fishing blades in the open water and along rock walls is very effective and one of the easiest ways to catch bream along with most other species that Lake Tyers has to offer. BEST METHOD When targeting bream in the winter months, a quality sounder is essential. Locating schooled up bream in open

Lucky Craft Bevy Shad 50s are dynamite hardbodies to be casting over the flats and into snags. This pair of bream couldn’t resist them. water and casting small blades to the fish is by far one of the best methods and most enjoyable ways to spend time on the water. MOTHER NATURE Dusky flathead rules and regulations have recently changed so remember that the size limit for dusky flathead is now 30-55cms with a total possession limit of five fish per angler. Letting the bigger fish go will ensure stock levels of fish are maintained and the breeders are left to do their thing. Fish for the future.

HOT TIP It’s important to adjust the drag on your reel to suit the surrounding environment you fish. When fishing for bream in snags, you want to have it locked up to make it easier to pull fish from the timber and not get busted off. Fishing in open water for bream and flathead, having the drag backed off is best. You will not pull as many hooks from mouths of fish as you are not required to pull them from timber in a white knuckled affair.


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Reds continue to run rampant WESTERN PORT NTH

Adam Ring

As you can imagine, it’s all about the snapper at this stage of the game! The shallow water has fished extremely well and we are at the time of the year where we see these red machines school up in huge numbers in the deeper water, and cricket score catches will become more and more consistent.

All of the usual haunts in the top end are producing good fish, so it’s really just a matter of hitting some old marks from previous seasons and seeing if the fish have stacked up there again for another season. There hasn’t really been a standout bait as of yet, and most fish are pretty willing to eat anything as long as you hit them in that bite window. Local fisho Nick found a nice little hole recently where he bagged a 7.54kg

red on the humble pilly, and it was a great way for Nick to kick off his season. Ryan McGregor came home with the daily double after putting in a few hours up the top end. Snapper were the target species, but as he ticked that box with a quality 7kg red, he also found himself wrestling a crazy 16kg gummy that came not long after. Shaun Furtiere is an absolute jet when it comes to this time of year. Shaun

Peter Vink with his whopper of a Lang Lang red.



has been fishing here, there and everywhere, but has pulled some really nice fish out of the top end. In amongst the snapper, Shaun has been getting some really nice gummies that have been taking a liking to some beautiful fresh yakka chunks. Peter Vink has spent most of his time up around Lang Lang in the shallow water, and the results have been outstanding! Pete has been saving a few of the calamari that he has been catching and preparing a few snapper baits that they just can’t resist. On a recent trip, Pete boated a 7.7kg snapper on one of those sensational bits of fresh squid. Joes Island continues to fill the fishing reports with no shortage of fish in the area. Dave Vandenbroek and Kane have been soaking a few pilchards, and the snapper have been climbing all over them. On one of their more recent trips, the lads boated a lovely 5.6kg specimen, along with an absolute monster of a fish that tipped the scales to 9.1kg. Well played indeed boys! Crawfish Rock is a place that we don’t hear much about until this time of year, and when the snapper move in it can become one of the hottest places in the port. Andrew Ketelaar is a local legend who continually gets it done, and this season has been no different. Andrew did the yards and got a couple of nice squid early

Don’t forget about the calamari on Tyabb Bank! and then converted that into a healthy 6kg snapper. In the north arm, it’s not all about the snapper and this is where you want to be if the snapper aren’t playing the game. There are loads of calamari up on the Tyabb Bank and Shaun Furtiere


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This is what 9.1kg of Top End snapper looks like!

has been moving in here to get his fresh calamari baits sorted for the day’s snapper fishing. Casting a jig amongst the broken ground of weed and sand has been deadly, and there are still a few submarine size squid hovering about. The 3.04.0 size jigs are working best, with no specific colour being better than the other. If I were to choose one though, the darker colours would be my pick. The whiting have also quietly been fishing well up and down the Middle Spit, and it’s not a bad option, as the rest of Victoria slips the snapper goggles on! Cruise the edges of the spit in 2-4m of water, and once you find them, you can fill a bag quite easily. Pipi laced with a nice little fresh strip of calamari is just too good to resist! I would still be putting the berley pot on the bottom with any old pilchards left over from your last snapper trip along with some pellets and tuna oil. This will keep those whiting hanging around your boat and not another boat sitting 100m away! I know this report has been snapper heavy, but these fish are just too good not to catch and if you haven’t had a crack yet. Do yourself a favour and make the effort to connect with a snapper, you will not be disappointed! There’s obviously other great targets during summer though, so snapper or not, you’ll be having fun! Keep those reports coming!

Trick some trout close to town PHILLIP ISLAND

John Dalla-Rosa

I fished trout opening with the grandkids and everyone managed to

catch a fish. Our big winter rains certainly changed the river structure, washing out trees, filling in old holes and creating new ones. It’s amazing how much

a river can change in a season. The government needs to change its policy and start stocking trout in streams, especially closer to the city. If people can

go on a picnic or an outing and catch a fish or two, it will encourage more people to go fishing. The good news is the snapper are showing in Western Port, both in the north arm and off Corinella. Let’s all hope for a bumper season. On the surf beaches, there’s still plenty of salmon about for fishos willing to chase them, with fish from 0.5-3kg coming in. All the local beaches have been fishing well; you just need the weather to be kind to you. SAN REMO AREA Below the bridge, there were big bluefin tuna taken and lost in the 100kg+ class in as close as 40m in depth. It goes to show that you don’t have to go to Portland to catch a tuna. Part of the bluefin’s migratory pattern is to travel up the East Coast of Australia, so my estimate is that between June and September, bluefin come through Bass Strait and shoot up the East Coast. It’s just a matter of picking a good day and having a go. Above the bridge, snapper are in, with fish starting to come in from

Trout season is open – get excited!

Trout fishing can be fun for everyone. Stoney Point, Hastings, Lysharts, Silverleaves, the Corals and Corinella on the other side. Whiting won’t be too far off – as soon as the water warms up it should be a good season for them as well.

FLINDERS AREA Big squid are about in good numbers. Local fishos have been doing well off the Flinders Jetty. If you’re a boatie, you need to get there just on daylight when the squid are most active.




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Calamari ring a bell? They’re great on snapper! the most consistent areas are the North Arm and in particular just off the edge of the Middle Spit. A fair amount of fish have been located around Buoy 29 in recent weeks. Those fishing just out from the Cowes Pier are doing extremely well on the run-out tide. Snapper to 7kg have been a common catch and 3-5kg models are likely for those on a quick fish, not a long session.


Jarrod Day

I think it’s fair to say that the snapper switch has been flicked. Reports are coming in thick and fast. Pin pointing a prime location to fish at this time of the month is challenging. There are fish being caught right throughout the Port but of all the locations,

The mud flats around Rhyll, Observation Point and in Coronet Bay are fishing very well with the Corals also firing up in recent weeks. There have been a lot of smaller fish in this area, fishing off Observation Point (S38 27.122 E145 20.176) in around 8-9m of water. In saying that, there’s been a significant amount of fish caught from along the drop off just out from Elisabeth Island (S38 25.267

Shaun went out to fish with his mate Robert Coillet and managed some magnificent reds from the Corinella area. Photo courtesy of Shaun Furtiere.

If you’re in search of calamari and land-based, you can’t go past the Flinders Pier. Just get there early to reserve your spot.

E 145 22.313). Fishing with fresh calamari rings has been the key. The Corinella area is still producing nice snapper and will continue to do so until the end of next month, then it’ll be about pinkies rather than solid snapper. When fishing the Corinella area, the run-out tide seems to be

right bite time at present. Of course, before dropping the anchor as soon as you arrive at your destination, always have a good look around, mark a few fish and position yourself in their direction. As long as you put out a spread of good baits, they’ll be on in no time. Joshua Western from the

Boronia Sport Fishing Club managed a whopper fish from the Corinella region that weighed 5.97kg. Shaun Furtiere reported that the fish in the Corinella region have been nothing but spectacular. On a recent trip, Shaun had long-time customer Colin Sires aboard. Early in the morning, Colin pull

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aboard a cracking snapper that went 5.3kg and took a calamari ring. Although it might be all about snapper, the calamari scene has also been very rewarding for those looking amongst the weedy banks. Tankerton has been producing wicked calamari as well as the Cat Bay and Flinders areas. Drift fishing has been the preferred method with jigs in the 3.0 and 3.5 sizes producing the goods. Colour is also a hot topic – jigs containing a red foil belly have been the most consistent catchers. Pure white coloured jigs have also caught a fair share too. Flinders Pier has been shut off for the past few weeks from halfway along, but has since re-opened. Anglers can fish from the end once again. The calamari pulled from this pier always astounds me. So far this season, it’s really stood out as the best platform to catch calamari from the Port. I recently dropped into the pier, not for a cast but a look, and found it was standing room only. Never have I seen so many bobby cork floats situated 10m out from the pier. Despite the angling pressure, there was no shortage of calamari caught by those fishing with baited jigs and artificial jigs. High tide has yielded the

most success. Although the bite has been quite good during the daylight hours, at night it’s been even better.

OFFSHORE The offshore scene has kicked off. Anglers poke their heads out the front

Wanting calamari? Now’s the time to hit the banks for big ones. Photo courtesy of Shaun Furtiere.

in search of mako. It’s still quite early, but there have been a few blue sharks caught along with great gummy sharks off the bottom. Most of this action has come from between the Western Entrance and Cape Schank. While the edge of the offshore reef extends out into 30m of water along this section, drifting along edges has proved to be productive. Over the coming months, this fishery will really open up with school sharks, sevengill sharks and kingfish available. One species that gets little recognition and is in abundance offshore, is the humble tiger flathead. Drift fishing for flatties is the preferred method. A simple paternoster rig gets it done. At times they can be a challenge to find in any number, but areas such as the Flinders Bank at the Western Entrance, the Eastern Entrance and in 20m of water along the coast near Kilcunda. These three locations are all worthy of a look. There are plenty of fish that can be caught with ease. A LITTLE ON THE BEACHES With snapper still on the chew, fishing the surf along our beaches this time of year is quite productive if you’re keen to put in effort. The salmon might be long gone but there are still yellow-eye

mullet, pinkie snapper and gummy sharks to be caught. Although all of the beaches contain yellow-eye mullet to around 500g, fish for them with a paternoster rig with two Mustad Bloodworm size #10 longshank hooks and little pieces of pipi for bait. Cast into the shore break. Berley is a must to bring them on the bite in the gutter. Gummy sharks are a popular affair with a lot of the beaches producing. To catch gummy sharks from the surf requires research, particularly when they’ll be most active. This is usually during the lead up to a full moon and in conjunction with a high tide. Beaches such a Williamsons, Kilcunda,

Lang Lang, Stockyard Point and Point Leo are the prime locations to give it a shot. Don’t be surprised if you’re left with a bite off too – there are some toothy critters about. Don’t go armed too light when targeting gummies. Tying rigs from 60, 80 and even 100lb at times should see you land the toothies as well as sizeable gummies. There’s nothing that can disappoint anglers at this time of year except the weather keeping them at bay. There’s always plenty of time to get out on the water and amongst the fish, just make sure you plan nice and early. Have a backup plan if the wind doesn’t play its role.

Colin Sires with his magnificent red. Photo courtesy of Shaun Furtiere.


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State-wide •

$25,000 for a feasibility study on stocking flathead into bays and inlets.

$30,000 to develop a marine fish habitat map for Victoria.

$54,000 for the continuation of the Statewide Angler Diary Program.

$62,000 to monitor recreational catch and effort for marine and estuarine finfish.

$120,000 for Fishcare to deliver a Creating Sustainable Anglers program.

$192,674 to print the Recreational Fishing Guide, fish length ruler stickers, plastic measures, pocket cards, dive tags and metal fish length rulers for piers.

Licence fees also fund extra Fisheries Officers, fish production at Snobs Creek and stocking, VRFish, Fishcare and the Small Grants program.

fees at work Port Phillip


$90,500 to install three fishing platforms on Sawtells Inlet, Tooradin.

$28,735 to install two fish cleaning tables at Crouch’s Inlet, Warneet.

$147,000 to create living shellfish reefs and rebuild fish habitat in Port Phillip Bay.

$100,000 to install instream habitat in the Mitchell River.

$76,939 to develop a tagging program with anglers to better understand the movement of Victorian King George whiting to their spawning areas.

$22,210 to undertake a translocation assessment for blackfish in the Tarwin River.

Northern •

$24,620 to build a fishing platform on the Wimmera River at Weir Park, Horsham.

$63,000 to build a fishing jetty on Yarriambiack Creek, Warracknabeal.

South West •

$70,000 to construct a boat ramp and fishing platform on the Surry River, Narrawong.

$14,500 to model the impacts of reducing redfin in Lake Purrumbete to improve the fishery.

$15,500 for a pilot Multicultural Responsible Fishing Program.

Mind-boggling big bream bonanza GIPPSLAND LAKES

Brett Geddes

In all the years of writing for this magazine starting way back in the first 2004 issue, this report is number 142 on the Gippy Lakes and possibly the most awe-inspiring. I won’t contain my excitement and I’m going to let rip in a big way! I wish I could dream up new words to convey the astounding catch of bream recently for bait

and lure anglers – thrilling, breathtaking, rousing, jolting or shocking! To me, these descriptors just don’t cut it. I’ll let the facts do the talking. RECORD CATCH RATES First of all, let me crunch some numbers and tallies from the hotspots, on the Tambo and Mitchell rivers or the Raymond Island and Paynesville areas. Over recent weeks, quite a few lure and mostly bait anglers are sending me reports of releasing 40-80 bream a session. Others tell me

they’re losing count after 50 or 70 fish. On one occasion near Paynesville, I fished blade lures with Mick Dee and between 1.30-5.00pm, we released 108 bream. Some people will scoff or sneer then declare such fishing as total rubbish. In the past I’ve been accused of telling fibs by a minority of feral anglers who I presume jealous, envious or just plain bitter. Well they can suck it up, because here are the facts! We kept careful count that afternoon – Mick scored

Once again, estuary perch are turning up where you least expect them.



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Justin Dingwall pulls in another cracker 45cm horse. He seems to find all the bigger bream and is starting to run out of friends to fish with! idea. The best part is most of these fish are around 35cm and plenty are over 40cm. The massive run of bream is such exciting news, and releasing them is so rewarding, but having the option of taking a few home is something we can all celebrate. Over the next month, the three best places to target in this order are: the Tambo River around the boat ramp, the Mitchell River at the Cut or Silt jetties and also the Raymond Island or Paynesville area. Before I forget, here’s a quick report from the water police. With so many anglers catching huge numbers of fish, it was great to see the authorities out in force. When it was my turn to be checked, I asked the boys about angler compliance and they reported on just a couple of minor offences – great news. We always worry about people abusing bag limits when the bream are biting so freely. TREVALLY AND PERCH It’s not all about the bream. Once again, trevally are starting to show up in much bigger numbers right across the Gippy Lakes. It’s a trend I’ve noticed over the

last five years and they’re definitely growing bigger too. I’ve caught a lot of them in Newlands and Duck Arms, Paynesville and the biggest numbers are around the Metung and Kalimna areas. They’re a welcome target for most anglers, providing great hard-fighting sport and yummy fillets for raw sushi. It’s fair to say the average sized trevor we catch is close to 30cm these days. Once in a while I get my lure smashed by a huge fish and after a sizzling short-lived run and a smoking reel, I’m busted off. I reckon the culprits are much bigger trevally over 50cm. Estuary perch have also fired up after all the fresh water flows. The Mitchell River is where to find them. Usually we target them upstream from Bairnsdale, but over recent weeks they’ve turned up in deep water out in the middle of the river, caught while chasing bream on blades. They’ve been big perch too, with most of them over 40cm. I find those cagey enigmatic EP breaking all the rules and turning up where you least expect them.

Winning with worms!


46 bream and I released 62. The next day, Mick took his mate Bryan straight back for more action and he let go another 76 bream. His buddy released 68. Dave Morris was there at the same time and he lost count at about 60 bream. Peter Nord turned up the next day for just over an hour with his son Nick and they got about 30 bream before leaving the hot bite in search of bigger fish. Justin Dingwal went for another quick morning session and stacked a lazy 42 bream and left them biting. I also went back for more fun and over two days I caught 152 bream, 16 trevally, 3 luderick and two mullet. I kept 2 bream, 4 trevors, 2 mullet and a luderick for the frying pan or sushi. Most of these bream are 30-34cm, but some stretch out to 42cm. These bigger fish keep us all searching, wading through the smaller ones for hours on end. And that’s the key for such big totals because some of us put in up to eight hours a day. Why go home when the fishing is so hot? BAIT FISHING Some keen bait anglers, including Anthony Havers and his partner Phil Williams, Michael Green, Warren Bertram, Boots McQuillen, and Rhonda and Graeme Beams have all chimed in with similar action by bagging out each trip. Paul Tudor has a caravan at Eagle Point and he told me it was the best Mitchell River bait fishing he’s seen with a lot of bream up to 40cm. On some weekends we have roughly counted between 70 and 90 anglers lining the banks of the lower Mitchell River or anchored up in boats. It was almost the same scenario on the lower Tambo River as well. It would be absurd to do grand totals on the thousands of bream caught during the last few weeks, but you get the


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What a strange year we’ve had – the weather fines up and the river subsides. The fishing comes good and another east coast low comes again and we start again. With the huge volumes of water that have come down the rivers, it should make the entrance deep and navigable for some time, giving the anglers good access to Bass Straight and taking the pressure of Cape Conran boat ramp. Through all the deluge

and rain, offshore has been fishing well, weather permitting. Anglers have reported mixed bins of good-size flathead, gurnard, squid, barracouta, pinkie snapper and gummy shark. The best results drifting for flathead are using white bait, blue bait and pilchards or fishing at anchor for gummy shark using squid or pilchards. The surf beaches fish well all year round with big schools of salmon and tailor patrolling the beaches. For the best results, use surf rods and bait fish with an additional popper or light tackle and spinning metal lures. Between flood events,

which have been far too often, the fishing has been excellent. With the deep entrance, it allows huge volumes of water to come into the estuary. With all that water, many schools of fish enter and repopulate the whole estuary. Anglers have reported capturing estuary perch fishing mid river using sandworms. Schools of mullet can be found throughout and can be caught on sandworms. Bream have also been taken in good numbers using sandworms, shelled prawn and black crabs. Salmon and tailor are taken on the in coming tide down near the entrance using metal lures.

Tip top tailor at Tyers LAKES ENTRANCE

Steven Pryke

The Gippsland Lakes water temperature has increased and so has the fishing. Plenty of dusky flathead are starting to work the drop-offs and shallow flats through the lake’s system. Many fish have been taken on soft plastics such as the Berkley 3” or 4” minnows and similar minnow patterns in smelt, chartreuse and camo worked on a combination

The gear of choice has been to use cut pilchard or sandworm under a float with about 6-8ft of line between your float and hook. King George whiting are showing up around the wharfs with many anglers catching good numbers each session. The major key to success is to use good quality polarised sunnies, making it easier to see whiting roll and flash as they dig worms out of the sandy bottom. Whiting are on the move. This fun fish has begun to

Another quality bream taken on a Jackall Chubby worked off a rocky point. of 1/12-1/8oz jigheads, depending on water depth. As usual, they’ve taken a serious liking to expensive hardbodies and are quick to suck them down. Our local towns have produced great fishing lately with solid catches of silver trevally and mullet, on two productive wharfs – the Post Office Wharf and Ferrymans Cafe Wharf in the town centre.

spread through the weed and sand flats around most of the lake, particularly concentrated around Rigby Island and Fraser Island. With the use of a simple paternoster rig or running sinker rig, matched up to 6-8lb leader or main line, with the rod and reel combo to suit, you’ll quickly find some great fishing. A major key to consistent success is to use fresh bait

like local worms and mussels. These baits are extremely productive and continue to produce fish through school holidays – when the waterways are at their busiest and usually hardest to catch fish. Increasing numbers of anglers target this great sportfish with soft plastics and other small lure presentations. I’ve found great success with Berkley Sandworms and Marukyu worms. These present a non-refusable snack for a hungry King George whiting hunting the edges of weed beds. To catch whiting on soft plastics, find a suitable jighead. Many jigheads are made with too large a hook. In my experience, you can’t do much better than Dragon micro jigheads or homemade jigheads fitted with a longshank hook. These allow use of the hook without a massive gap, so whiting with their small mouths can suck the whole soft plastic for an easy hook-up. LAKE TYERS The lake has been extremely productive with usual species like bream, flathead and tailor hunting along weedy edges of the lake. Recent reports indicate the large amount of dusky flathead are on the move with 70cm+ flathead being caught more regularly. The iconic fish are hunting sand and rocky flats throughout the main lake and Nowa Nowa arm. Bait fishing has been extremely productive with many anglers finding success

Tailor are a common by-catch when working large soft plastics in search of dusky flathead. with prawn or glassies. These offerings have been fished lightly-weighted along the edges of sand flats or around fallen trees. In a healthy estuary such as Lake Tyers, these baits rarely last very long. The many scattered bays and points throughout Lake Tyers have produced great bream fishing lately. Success comes from fat hardbodies such as the Jackall Chubby in brown suji. This great lure and similar patterns have been worked along weed edges and scattered rocky points with nice catches. Focus on the speed that you retrieve your lure. I found best results have come with an extremely slow roll – allow the lure to keep contact with the bottom and push dirt and silt of the bottom. This makes your lure look like it’s grubbing along the bottom like the small bait fish. OFFSHORE Offshore fishing has been

Gummies good along the beaches NINETY MILE BEACH

Will Thompson

The Ninety Mile Beach has been fishing very well again this month, and with the water temperature increasing as we speak, the fishing is set to be red-hot! The main target species has been the humble gummy shark, as they are going very well at the moment with most anglers catching one or two. The best time has been the evenings, with most of the gummies being caught between 7-10pm, and if you can get a tide change with in those times, you will be in with a really good chance of catching a gummy shark. The seven-gill sharks are still around in big numbers, and they have been the usual by-catch of the gummies and small school sharks. The best baits have been blue bait, squid and salmon fillet. The salmon haven’t

gone really well this season, with only the odd salmon being caught here and there along the Ninety Mile, and there hasn’t been any real pattern, they have just been random fish. There been a few tailor caught during the evenings, and they have been making excellent bait for the sharks. The best beaches have been Golden Beach, McGaurans and Woodside. Over the next few weeks we should see the first few snapper of the season turn up on the beaches. To add of the list of target species in the coming weeks, another degree or two in the water temperature and those big bronze whalers will turn up. • For more information, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on 5174 8544. You will get expert advice and great deals on fishing bait and tackle. Tune into Rex Hunt and Lee Rayner’s Off the Hook on 1242 to hear Will’s report on what’s going on in Gippsland!

Andy Connelly and his son caught and released this nice gummy shark caught at McGaurans Beach.

reasonably productive with quality pinkie snapper taken on the Eight and Twelve Mile reefs. This iconic sportfish has mainly been caught using traditional tactics of bottom bashing with pilchard, squid and tuna fillets for bait – bites come thick and fast.

for chasing pelagic species as they match the food source that salmon and tailor feed on. Bait has consistently caught fish. Use a paternoster rig with fresh blue bait or white bait when fishing our local surf beaches. Extend the length of line between

Double hook-ups are coming, think fast. For by-catches, persistent bottom bashing regularly produces morwong, leather jackets, nannygai and many unwelcome by-catches such as barracouta. SURF Early sunrises on the surf have produced great sportfish with consistent catches of salmon and tailor. Anglers have won out on spin gear with metal lures, such as AusTackle Sluggos, which offer a great blue bait or white bait pattern. These are perfect

your bottom hook and sinker to about 75cm+. This makes your baits sit higher in water and will stop the local sand crabs from eating it to give the fish a chance to find your bait. HAVE YOU BEEN FISHING? If you’ve been out for fish lately and have a great pic, send it to stevenprykefishing@ with a short description. You could be featured in the next edition of Fishing Monthly.

Local angler Lindsay Pryke with a quality bream taken on a well-presented soft plastic. NOVEMBER 2016


Giant ‘tings of terror! MCLOUGHLINS

Will Thompson

It’s finally that time of year again. You can feel summer is only a stones throw away and the fish have come on the chew quick, and it’s only going to get better. Firstly, the water temperature has increased, but is still a little lower than what it was this time last year. Last month it was around 14.5-15.5°C on average and it seems the snapper are just slightly eluding us south Gippsland anglers, perhaps due to the water temperature. At McLoughlins, the salmon have still been at Manns Beach entrance in huge numbers and anglers are catching them easily on metal lures and soft plastics on the run-out tide. The biggest talk of the

town had been the King George whiting bite that started last month. These things are big fat whiting and they’re biting on the run-out tide, especially on pipi and fresh squid baits. Those big blue-spot flathead have just started coming on the chew and there’s been some quality flathead of 50cm caught on the sand flats so far. This style of fishing is only going to get better as the water temperature warms up another couple of degrees. PORT ALBERT The Corner Inlet system has been riddled with slimy weed for the past month, and my experiences have so far been that it’s a lot worse during the run-in tide than it is on the run-out. The shallower areas seem to be less prolific with weed than the deeper channels. Hopefully the weed will be

gone soon. In fishing news, the whiting have been the biggest talk at the moment. They are going extremely well and are absolute crackers in size with the average size being 37cm and up to 43cm in length. Pipis have been the standout bait, but we have been doing well on squid as well. The Port Albert channel has been as good a place as any to try. The gummy sharks are going very well, and they seem to be biting an hour either side of the tide changes. Most of them are around the 3ft mark, but there are a few over 1m in length. Pilchards and squid have been the best baits, squid especially since huge amounts of calamari have entered the system. Over the next month it’s going to be all about the snapper, and I imagine we will have

Good numbers of King George whiting are now on the chew at Port Albert and they are averaging 38cm. plenty to talk about. • For more information, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on

5174 8544. You will get expert advice and great deals on fishing bait and tackle. Tune into Rex Hunt

and Lee Rayner’s Off the Hook on 1242 to hear Will’s report on what’s going on in Gippsland!

Warm weather and summer fish in abundance BEMM RIVER

Robyn Sturgess

We’re now in the midst of warm weather after an extremely wet and cold winter. The water temperature is enticing fish and all anglers are satisfied with their catches. Des Wilson from Waverley frequents the area and has the motto that if he doesn’t get a bite in fifteen minutes, he moves to another location. Des often reports that the best bream are in the shallows around the Sibiera area. Des prefers peeled banana prawn as bait. The entrance remains open, maintained by the excessive rainfall during winter months. Mark Jones, son Kane and friend Cooper visited in late September and always prefer the channel for their fishing. The salmon, bream and trevally didn’t

disappoint. The surf has been quiet in the past month and the river has been difficult to enter, due to low water. Those who were able to enter have been rewarded with quality bream. For up to date reports, check out our website, or alternatively, our Bemm River Holiday Accommodation and Boat Hire Facebook page. TAG A FISH WINNER During the winter months, the Bemm River Progress and Improvement Association, in conjunction with Bemm River Holiday Accommodation and Boat Hire the Bemm River Hotel, Caravan Park, Cosy Nook, Bemm River Holiday Houses and Bemm River Bungalows, conducted the Bemm River Tag-A-Fish Promotion. This commenced from 1 June to 31 August. There were 5 tagged fish were caught, tagged, photographed and released by Fisheries Victoria representatives, prior

to the promotion. The aim of the promotion was to catch and present a tagged fish to obtain a prize. The major prize was a boat, trailer and motor. If no tagged bream were caught and presented, all registered anglers were given the opportunity to participate in the second chance draw, which was held Saturday, 24 September at the Bemm River Hotel. Cr. Peter Neal, from the East Gippsland Shire Council and his wife, Maree, came to Bemm for the night to draw the lucky winner. The lucky angler was Robert from Oakleigh, a member of the Knox and Clayton fishing clubs. Rob registered at the Bemm River Hotel and stays at Cosy Nook Accommodation. A very excited Rob was not present at the draw, so there isn’t yet a photo of him with his prize. This hugely successful

Phil Meyer from Dartmouth with a nice catch.

event has been a mighty effort from the participating business houses, Progress Association volunteers and the many sponsors who donated prizes. These prizes will be included in ongoing events to raise money for next year’s promotion. This was a first for Bemm River and we intend to make it an annual event. • For on the spot and up to date fishing reports check out Robyn’s website: www. bemmaccommodation. or ‘like’ us on Facebook – Bemm River Holiday Accommodation Phone: (03) 5158 4233/ Mob. 0427 584 233 Email: bemmaccomm@

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On their first snapper hunt for the season, Michael and his son Chris tried their luck out from Rhyll in Western Port. They were rewarded with two great reds. Both fish were caught on the first hour of the run-out tide.

Weather finally starts to let up SHALLOW INLET

Andrew Starrett

We’re finally seeing a break in the weather, which has been miserably cold, wet and windy in recent weeks. It hasn’t been uncommon to experience four seasons in one day, and these conditions have kept many anglers indoors. Those keen anglers who have braved the cold have been rewarded with good catches of silver trevally. Most have come from the

shallow inlets, along with Australian salmon. The salmon can be caught up towards the entrance using either white occy skirts or Rapala Silver Wobblers. The trevally can be caught on a range of baits, from pipis through to squid. Anglers are also picking up the odd King George whiting. They can be taken on both pipis and nippers, but if there are any pickers about they will strip a nipper very quickly. Flathead are still about as well, with most being

caught on pilchards. THE MONTH AHEAD November marks the start of good whiting fishing, as these tasty fish start moving in en masse. We’ll also see the snapper coming through, with the action in full swing. Pilchards are the number one bait, and the smaller pinkie snapper also love pipis. For those anglers keen to tangle with gummy sharks, the best time is five days before and after the full moon on 15 November.

The gummies will be in deep sections of the inlet here, and can be found from about 6-8m in depth from the entrance to halfway between the Sandy Point boat ramp and Leicester Road boat ramp. The best baits for the gummies are pilchards or strips of silver trevally. As the year progresses, the warming water temperatures will increase the likelihood of the King George whiting moving in. We can expect the whiting action to improve greatly in the coming months.


Personal locator beacon saves spearfisher Anglers are advised to carry a locator beacon when operating offshore, but a New Zealand man’s fall from a cliff while spearfishing proves it’s also important to wear a personal locator beacon in remote regions. Dylan and his father Donald were at Taiharuru Bay when they decided to cross over a cliff face to another fishing spot. Dylan’s rope broke, sending him plummeting

14m to the rocks below. A nearby friend happened to have an ACR Electronics ResQLink PLB. After activating it, rescue services arrived by helicopter in under an hour. Suffering from a fractured leg and a chip in his spine, Dylan was winched to safety. John Wa l k e r, Coromandel Fire Brigade chief, praised the group for having a PLB on hand, which refined their location to within 5m. – ACR

November marks the start of good fishing for King George whiting. Photo courtesy of Peter Jung.



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Warm up for a great fishy challenge on the cast MALLACOOTA

Kevin Gleed

The town is quietest over winter months and with the amount of rain we’ve had, you can understand why. Visitors are waiting for the weather to improve before heading to Mallacoota for a holiday, but with spring here and summer around the corner, it won’t be long until the town livens up. The offshore water temperature is around 15.5°C. Fishing won’t really fire up until the water warms a few more degrees and the local fishers are aware of that. Once the REVA G.T

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water warms, they’ll be out among the fish. Currently, those who have tried have done it hard with only a few good-sized gummy sharks caught. Heading offshore from the harbour, you need to be familiar with the shifting sand. On the lower tide, it’s surprising how shallow it can actually be. Pick your day and allow for waves breaking across the front of the entrance. Fishing in the harbour and surrounding rocks has been good for yellowfin bream and silver trevally. The odd King George whiting has also been caught. Fresh prawns and pipis have been the choice of bait. Don’t be surprised

to catch a black bream or dusky flathead either – a good fresh really moves the fish. Salmon have been caught from the breakwall and gutters on local beaches with lures or bait, it’s just a matter of putting your offering in front of the fish. After the recent rains, salmon are caught on the incoming tide in Harrisons Channel. They were further up the system, but muddier water has chased them back to the ocean. The back of Goodwin Sands has been fishing well with plenty of baitfish about. Finding the schools will put you amongst the yellowfin bream and silver














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Decent-sized tailor have been terrorising the bait schools. trevally. Chopper tailor are annoying, as they steal lures and chew up soft plastics. On the upside, if they’re about, you’re in the right area. Good fish have been

caught in the Narrows. Bream, flathead and a few estuary perch are in after rain. The Narrows is often the spot to fish, as it’s a travelling lane – fish move from the Top Lake to the

Bottom Lake. Good fishing has been had upstream above Gypsy Point with black bream spawning. They can be a real challenge – some days biting, other days near impossible.

Getting even better at Eden EDEN

Kevin Gleed

After a cold wet winter it’s starting to warm up. With spring here and summer around the corner, more visitors are heading to the far south coast. It’s a great time to be here, before the town gets real busy over the Christmas holidays. The offshore water

temperature is warming up around 18°C, a lot warmer than Mallacoota to the south. With the warmer water, the fishing is starting to pick up. Good catches of tiger and sand flathead from between the Pinnicles and Haycock Point have been had, with good size snapper still caught on the inshore reefs. Morwong, leatherjackets and nannygai are also being caught on the

inshore reefs. Yellowtail kingfish are about, and it’s worth getting out there and chasing these fish. The full moon gets the tide moving, which is the best time to chase kingies anywhere from South Head down to Mowarry Point. Whether trolling lures, live baiting or jigging, you need to keep an eye on the sounder. Once fish are found, you can then work out the best way to

catch them. Keep an eye out for whales that are migrating at the moment. Some have been spotted very close to shore. Salmon are still on the local beaches with sand whiting and yellowfin bream being caught on beach worms on the rising tide. Dusk or dawn tides are the most productive. With the amount of salmon around, you can expect to encounter them in local estuaries as


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A great day with good size flathead on the bite. they move in and out with the tide, terrorising bait schools and anything else they come across. Fishing from the rocky headlands has been good for luderick and big drummer. More and more people are getting into this style of fishing and the Eden area has some productive spots for it. The local estuaries are starting to fire up with

the warm water. Dusky flathead are on the go with some good black bream further upstream. The fishing will only improve over the coming months. In the fresh at the top of the rivers, bass fishing is coming alive. Remember, this is a catch and release fishery, as they are too valuable to only catch once.

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November wind will blow over MERIMBULA

Stuart Hindson

It’s been a windy start to November for the Merimbula region. The mornings have been okay, but by 10:00am those 30-40 knot northwesterly winds have wreaked havoc on fishos. I know that’ll change over coming weeks and we get the traditional northeasters in the afternoons, but at the minute it’s difficult.

When you can get out, the estuaries will continue to fire up with local haunts producing quality fish. Pambula has been excellent with trevally, flatties, bream, salmon and luderick all chewing at times. The faster water in the channels from Shark Hole to the entrance is the place to fish with bait and lure anglers having success. Anchored up on the draining tide with the freshest of baits, the bait brigade has had a ball. A few locals have cleaned

Ritchie and son Josh, 11, with a few trevally they caught while fishing the Pambula River – fish don’t have to be huge to bring smiles to happy anglers. The lads managed 20 odd fish in pretty windy conditions.

up on bream, especially with a bit of colour still in the water. In the main basin, the edges in 4-5m have been okay for flathead, but they’re sporadic. This is likely due to the water temperature staying around 16°C. That will change over coming weeks. In fact, this coming moon should be good for the flats. I don’t mind targeting them and have had solid success around that time. I’d be using plastics or soft vibes mixing it up a little until there’s a pattern happening. It’s funny, but when they’re not switched on, you need to change things up to get desired results. Offshore, wind has made things difficult. Sportfishers have had to pick their days. When they’ve got wide, there’s been a few yellowfin around, mostly school fish in the 20-30kg bracket, but there will be bigger fish there. Solid jumbos have been caught north of us off Narooma, so if the currents do the right thing, we may be in luck. Trolling is the go early this season, as you get to cover the water and find the fish. If you come across

a decent patch, cubing might be worth a look. Closer to shore, there’s plenty of big kings about, certainly not what it was a few months back, but they’re popping up from headland to headland. The better places to search for a greenback are Tura Head, Long Point or Haycock to the south. Cast bigger stickstyle softies or poppers for a stack of fun. If fish are deeper then a weighted slimy mackerel might be the method. The local beaches have been exceptional over recent weeks, especially for bream and whiting. Most beaches hold fish. Bream to 1kg or so and whiting to 43cm have been captured and are good sport on the light tackle, not bad on the plate either. Better baits to use include pipis, fresh prawns and live beachworms. North Tura, Tura Main, and Haycock beaches are the picks. There’s plenty of salmon around. At times they’re thick and play havoc on light gear. If you target them on paternoster rigs, you’re in for some fun. I expect a few mulloway and gummy sharks to be

Craig ‘Hendo’ Henderson with a thumping whiting taken on a plastic. This fish was released. caught for those who have a go. Fishing the evening flooding tides into the nights leading up to the full moon should pay rewards. North Tura is a hotspot for mulloway. The rock-hoppers are still getting smoked by kings off Tura Head, but not like previous months. Being there at first light has been the key to getting a bite with all methods getting results at times. I’d expect to see a few smaller kings turn up too. November

usually sees bonito and the odd striped tuna as well. All these speedsters can be targeted with spinning shiners or whole pilchards on ganged hooks. If all else fails, a few solid sambos should keep you interested in between other species. There’s still some good bread and butter species like bream, drummer and luderick there for the taking. Fishing the washes at Short Point with fresh cunjevoi or prawns should see tasty fillets for the pan.


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It’s time for Merimbula’s monster mulloway NAROOMA

Stuart Hindson

It’s that time of year when the light bream outfits get pushed aside and the heavier, beefed-up mulloway sticks get their turn to shine!

spring, which gave the estuary systems the good flush they needed. This in turn has seen huge bait schools enter both systems, especially Tuross, as it’s the deepest at the entrance I’ve seen it for a very long time. With more whitebait, glassies and pilchards in the calm water, tailor numbers

the game, then mega flathead are a possibility also. It’s a great month for the crocs as they head downstream to do their thing and are hungry. A slower presentation fished close to the bottom is the go, as they are lazy buggers when they get to this size. Fishing the same type of plastics and vibes should entice the strike. If the trophies are not for you and you want a feed, then the ribbon weed edges in 6-7m of water around the margins should produce ample 40-55cm flatties for the pan. The sand flats in both systems will see bream and whiting starting to chew as the water warms further with anglers fishing nippers, worms and surface walkers getting amongst them. The channels will have ample blackfish, trevally and bream for those who want to anchor and berley. Offshore has seen some cracking yellowfin tuna caught thus far this month with local Narooma gun angler Anthony Nelipa getting into them. Anthony has caught several solid fish up to 80kg on cubes fishing wide of the shelf. It may seem a bit weird to be getting tuna at this time of year, but I think they have been there all winter and spring this year. The water has remained above 18°C, the bait’s been there, the only problem has been the sea conditions with wind making it hard to get out there. When it’s been okay the fish have responded, which all looks promising for the coming months. It’s possible we may see an early striped marlin run if the water warms a little further.

Catching two mulloway in two casts isn’t the easiest thing to do, but these boys managed just that! These fish went 90 and 81cm, and both fish were tagged and released. If so, trolling a spread of mid sized pushers may be the go with the shelf and beyond the place to fish. Closer to shore at Montague Island, the kingfish have been very patchy. You get a few one day, then nothing for the next three, so the consistency is certainly not there. When anglers have had success, jigs have certainly worked best with the northeast corner the place to fish when the current is pushing south. There’s been a lot of bonito around, so if the kings are slow, a feed of bonnies shouldn’t be too hard to get. These guys eat well when looked after either fresh or in the smoker. The beaches have

started to fire up with a few mulloway captures. I know of one visiting angler that did a guiding ession with me recently who told me of two fish, 9 and 6kg, that he caught on Blackfellows Beach on the last moon. That’s pretty good fishing from the sand! He was using fresh tailor fillet strips on a paternoster rig. Other beaches worth a look for a mulloway include Brou, Coila and Tilba to the south of Narooma. If you’re after a feed of bream and whiting, then these same beaches should fish well. Use a smaller running sinker outfit with pipi or beachworm for best results and just fish past the shore dump. On the rocks, the blackfish

have been excellent in the washes. The northern end of the Golfie Rocks in the corner has been a stand-out with bag limits reached on most occasions. Those doing okay have used fresh cabbage with a sand and weed berley mix, though fresh prawns has been pretty good too. There’s been a few groper, bream and drummer mixed in, so a heavier outfit might be on the cards if you’re after the bigger fish. The front ledge has been okay for salmon and tailor, though they have been a little sporadic with the calmer sea conditions we have had of late. That will change once we get some white water around the ledges.


The Ultimate Fishing adventure is back Gun offshore local angler Anthony Nelipa with a cracking 75-80kg yellowfin he caught while cubing off the shelf. November is prime time for these silver marvels with Narooma’s Wagonga Inlet and Tuross Lake system to the north the areas to fish. There’s already been a few mulloway caught in both systems over recent weeks, but expect a lot more over the next month or so. Anglers using large soft plastics and vibes will fare well, although live and dead baits will also produce, especially at night. For me and many other anglers targeting them, softies are the go-to method, as you’re actively chasing them around moving bait schools and subsurface structure. Not to mention the fun of the chase and getting that bite, which certainly gets the adrenalin and blood flowing. I expect to see big fish this month, as we got the rain at the right time over winter and

have increased, and we all know that mulloway love tailor. I’m a firm believer that fishing the edges of feeding tailor schools is the ultimate way to target mulloway in this neck of the woods. I would say that 70% of all my mulloway captures over the last 15 years have come from tailor schools within these two estuary systems. There are a few downfalls with this, as you do go through a lot of gear with softies, jigheads and leader all suffering, and it does become expensive, but if it’s a prize catch you want, the money is worth it. I’d be concentrating in the main basins of both systems, looking out for diving terns above and bait schools below. Just keep casting, your turn will come. If the mulloway don’t play

Matt Watson, the crazy kiwi fisher who famously leaped out of a helicopter to catch a marlin and landed himself on the Late Show with David Letterman is fronting an all-new adventure fishing series that promises to reshape the fishing and outdoors TV genre in Australia. Ultimate Fishing showcases hardcore fishing action from all over the world, pioneering new grounds of remote and wild locations. Switch baiting blue marlin in West Africa, casting stickbaits and poppers at giant trevally in the rugged outer reaches of the Cook Islands, the line screaming runs of giant bluefin tuna in Nova Scotia to the unforgiving and energy sapping battles with swordfish and sharks in New Zealand –­ if you think you’ve seen it all, you haven’t. Whether you’re a seasoned fisher, or just starting out, you get taken

on a journey learning the latest techniques, tap into Matt’s encyclopaedic knowledge of fish and fishing that’s stemmed from a very successful professional career. Each episode establishes the mission to catch a huge fish somewhere. We learn a little about the fish, the location and the often-ridiculous scheme that Matt has come up with to catch the monster – then the drama unfolds! The action is incredible but real, where nothing’s contrived and that’s the big hook. You feel like you’re right there for every thrilling moment. The Ultimate Fishing crew put it all on the line to deliver the best outdoors fishing adventure show on the planet. Their cameras get into places delivering up close action – like never seen before. The world’s most extreme fisher, Matt Watson leads us on a series of expeditions around the world to tangle with the ocean’s greatest fish. The locations are remote, the

characters are salty and wild, and Matt and his team deliver big fish and unequalled action in every episode. Forget about sitting through another show that builds up a

mission and doesn’t deliver. This isn’t your dreary ‘cast a bait and wait’ style show. It’s informative, it’s adventurous, it’s innovative, and it’s hilarious. NOVEMBER 2016


Race season or fishing season BERMAGUI

Darren Redman

The spring racing carnival in Victoria hosting the Melbourne Cup is not to everyone’s liking, so what do anglers do when they don’t want to go to the races? Well, they go to Bermagui for the start of the game fishing season.

coming from out over the Continental Shelf through to the Canyons. It helps if you can work with other boats, as often one may find a school of fish and other boats coming into the area will help keep the fish up on the chew. With water temperatures now on the increase, don’t be surprised to see the odd marlin starting to show. When rigging lures, make

snapper, ocean perch and some lovely Tassie trumpeter. This is also the time of year for big tiger flathead and you won’t get them bigger than on the edge of the Twelve Mile Reef. It may be hard fishing out there, but the results are worth it. Thankfully those tigers don’t reside just around the Twelve Mile, these fish can be found in closer

Berleying the shallows often offers surprises like this ray sniffing the berley bucket. With holidays on offer Victorians have ventured to Bermagui Melbourne Cup weekend for many decades now, so what can they expect to catch? Already there is plenty on offer in small to medium tuna – albacore, yellowfin, striped and the occasional big-eye tuna. Most of these are being taken on the troll with diving, swimming lures providing most success. Using these in conjunction with skirted lures will often see the divers taken first, resulting in other fish from the school then reacting to the skirts. The areas to target are from the Six Mile Reef and beyond, with most fish

sure your hardware is sufficient to handle an early season beaky. I’ve always stated that where there is tuna there are sharks, hammerheads, whalers and especially makos. The makos are out there in numbers and a well-laid berley trail of tuna should attract one to your vessel. Do this where the tuna are concentrating for the best results. The Twelve Mile Reef may be considered, and gives you the option of some reef fishing while you wait for the big one to come along. Fishing on the Twelve Mile you can expect most of your common reef fish to be encountered with recent good captures of morwong,

the fish feasting on these succulent crustaceans, so are humans! There’s plenty to be found in the lakes surrounding Bermagui. The entrance to Wallaga Lake is very wide at present, where nice mulloway have entered giving anglers chasing flathead with lures a pleasant surprise. Both Wallaga and the Bermagui River have good stocks of luderick at present, which are hanging around both bridges, along the rock walls and around the sea grass beds over the flats in the upper reaches of the systems. There’s plenty of the other estuary species to be found as well around the entrances or adjacent beaches and rocks. Salmon are prolific with some nice tailor mixing in. We should also see other small pelagics travelling the coast in the form of bonito, kingfish or frigate mackerel, which are in good numbers up at Montague Island. Brogo Dam is in full swing – the ongoing stocking program of the Far South Coast Bass Stocking Association provide excellent angling within the dam. Sizes

around the many reefs that surround Bermagui, in as close as 30m water depth. Most medium sized fish will be taken from water depths of around 50m close to the reefs where you can still encounter those other reef fish. Closer to shore, sand flatties will prevail out from most beaches and provide tasty bags for anglers, with the added bonus of a gummy shark thrown in for good measure. There’s plenty to be had on shore with the estuaries in full swing. This is the result of good rains last season that left our lakes and rivers open to the ocean. Fish stocks have increased, as have the prawns. Not only are

When striped tuna start to show you can be sure big fish will follow. are mixed with the average around 30cm and the odd thumper over 40cm. There are also lovely fish in the river

below the dam, but there is now a no fish zone for the immediate 300m below the wall.

Hammerheads are one shark you may encounter out from Bermagui.






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Victoria’s peak body representing 838,000 fishers.

protecting and growing

inland fishing in Victoria

r u o y g Makin etter! b g n i h s fi

Recent achievements & ongoing projects include: A review leading to:

The removal of closed season on Murray cod in Lake Eildon given the lack of breeding and reliance on stocking.

Angler access to be maintained through the River Red Gum Management Plan. 4 WORK IN PROGRESS


Prolonging the Toolondo boom trout fishery by:

Acquiring and holding 5000 megalitres of water at Lake Toolondo held by Iluka Resources.

The closed season on south west trout rivers to be removed given lack of breeding trout and reliance on stocking.

A total ban on opera house nets in all Victorian waters due to ongoing compliance issues and impacts on wildlife such as platypus. 4 WORK IN PROGRESS



Conducting a broad survey of fishers to:

Help establish a minimum legal size limit on trout.

1 million Murray cod stocked in Lake Eildon.


A review supporting:

The reduction of yellow belly bag limits in lakes and impoundments.

Murray cod and yellow belly to be stocked into Rocklands Reservoir.



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VR Fish Update

Lake Toolondo gets a much needed boost VR FISH

Dallas D’Silva

VRFish, the peak body representing recreational fishers in Victoria has welcomed moves by the Andrews Government to once again ‘summer proof’ the recreational fishery at Lake Toolondo. VRFish Chairman, Rob Loats said, “We congratulate the Government on taking swift action to secure the short term future of the lake and protect the interests of recreational fishers at Lake Toolondo. It’s great to see the Government moving forward with the delivery of 10000ML of vital water.” Lake Toolondo is recognised by many as Victoria’s premier trout fishery. The fishery provides an important source of

income to local economies and is a tourism draw card for anglers from South Australia to New South Wales. The lake is a unique ecosystem and is home to a diverse population of fauna and flora. Following a dry 2015, the excellent spring rain this year has meant that the trigger for Rocklands Reservoir has now been reached and this is exciting news for Lake Toolondo, with additional water being released into the lake today. Rob Loats added, “VRFish is thrilled to be here on the banks of this majectic lake with Minister Pulford and Minister Neville as the additional water and new batch of trout are released. This is a huge boost for the local economy and it will deliver great financial return to dependent businesses such

as hotels, restaurants, tackle shops and petrol stations.” Since 2013, VRFish has worked closely with Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water, recreational fishers, Fisheries Victoria and DELWAP to explore all actions that could be taken to safeguard the fishery and prolong the boom for as long as possible. In January 2015, VRFish played a key role in negotiating and holding the 5000ML water entitlement that was released into the Lake. We commend the Government for once again ensuring the interests of recreational fishing are at the forefront of all considerations on water usage as it affects Lake Toolondo. For more information on VRFish, visit our Facebook page.

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Top: Lake Toolondo is looking good with the new water added. Bottom: Hopefully this will be the result in a few years after the stocking. NOVEMBER 2016


Go Behind the Scenery


The shackles are off! TASMANIA

Kelly Hunt

Tasmania has a history dotted with convict stories, and this month I can safely say the shackles are off. The heavy chains of a long winter and mad wet spring have been hacksawed and thrown down. The good weather is upon us and it’s looking like a fabulous month ahead. November is when we finally say goodbye to the

wet months and hello to some sun, and heaps of it. Daylight savings time is in full swing, and ‘after work’ becomes an angler’s delight – with some good planning and organisation first. The water temperatures are starting to climb up the thermometer, and the fish species attuned to this have been spawning away merrily. There are a good few Tasmanian species that will either spawn or start to school up for spawning in and around November. These

include Australian salmon, bream and flathead – not to mention the yummy striped trumpeter. These fish will have finished getting their jiggy jig on and be famished, so get out and get a bait in front of them. November is on the very cusp of the piscatorial party that starts to unfold for Tasmanian anglers in the warmer months. It’s not quite summer just yet, but this is the month of trying something different and learning new tricks.

the flats very quickly. Fishing in and around the high water, you are looking for Australian salmon, gummy shark and some very nice flathead. The area is also well known for its couta and pike. These are a lot of fun and, if you have a good recipe, very tasty. Those staying in the area overnight can also find a number of very good areas to try their hand at floundering. I have not spent enough time in the area to know the channels and banks very well, so I like to fish the incoming tide and the first hour as the water comes off the flats into the channels. Throwing soft plastics is my bag, but those who use hardbodies and bait also do very well.

If you’re bait fishing, take a variety of sinker weights as you may find the water flow varies. Also try a few different rigs, like the running sinker strayline rig. Check that out on Google and bait one of your rods with a whole pilchard or silver whiting. There is no real reason you won’t happen to find a decent gummy or even a snapper. Using 40lb leader and getting some berley going in the water will help out in this instance. The sleepy seaside hamlet of Stanley is famous for its great lump of dirt and stone called the Nut. This is an old volcanic plug formation discovered by keen fishers Bass and Flinders in 1978. It has very steep, cliff-like sides and rises up 143m with a flat top (not unlike the hairstyle I

NORTH WEST COAST This is a month where we really see the coast come alive. We actually have a really good species count starting to come together. Let’s go through them quickly, and look at likely locations. The two bodies of water on either side of the road to Stanley are well worth a look. The big news in this salty village is the Stanley Wharf, but many people drive past the amazing fishing to be had in the two inlets. There has long been a ban in netting in the west and east inlets, and the fishing has been all the better for it. The area is accessible by land and sea, but watch the tides as the water comes off

Richard found a very nice fish in the Tamar River. used to sport for most of the 90s). You can walk up the side or take the very cool chairlift to the top and walk around. The best feature at Stanley for keen anglers is the old wharf area. This wharf has long been the legend of shorebased anglers on the coast, and news of it is starting to spread like wildfire. I know of some keen anglers in Devonport who used to say ‘Show Day is go day’. They would plan a trip after the Devonport Show weekend, and get up to Stanley as it would start to fire at the end of November. While this is the case, and the fishing here really starts to kick in during December, don’t leave anything to chance – get up there early. If we have learnt anything in the last couple of years, it’s not to let tradition

and old opinions shape our fishing. If you get out and try something new in a spot not often fished, you may be surprised. In this instance, I would suggest getting there early and avoiding the crowds that can form when the fish are well and truly running. What will you need to do battle with on the Stanley wharf? Because you’re at a wharf with deep water just a short cast away, you may think you only need a short, boat-style rod. This is the complete opposite in the trenches. In the heat of battle you will be thankful for a long rock casting or smaller beach fishing style rod. A case in point is when you encounter the famed snotty trevally. When they decide to come through they

don’t muck about; they come around the corner and down along the wharf, picking at baits as they come. It can be the scene of total mayhem and carnage as anglers and fish do battle elbow-to-elbow and fin-to-fin. Instinctively, the fish will want to head for the barnacle-encrusted pylons of the old wharf, and a short rod will allow it to do so. At least with a longer rod you can create some distance and angle to give you a fighting chance. This is no place for sportfishing and 4lb leaders either. If you want to play a fish up and down the wharf like a brook trout in a babbling stream, you won’t win too many friends. Locked up drags and 5-8kg To page 51


Salmon Ponds fishing is now better than ever IFS

Tim Farrell

We’ve not only fixed, but improved the disabled fishing platforms and surrounding area at the Salmon Ponds. The winter floods caused a lot of damage making the area unusable. We had to remove major log jams in the river and completely restore the space around the platforms. Rocks left by the flood had made it completely inaccessible. Tim Jenkins, who owns the adjoining property, did the work. It’s such an improvement that there are now additional fishing opportunities and the general amenity of the area is so much better. The grass will be replanted this week and the area will be in top condition before the busy tourist season. Visit www. CARP MANAGEMENT PROGRAM The 2015-16 Carp Management Program Annual Report is complete. Find out how we’re going in the battle with carp in Lake Sorell and all the 50


The before and after of the Salmon Ponds disabled fishing facility. 2015-16 season news. There are new developments in carp eradication techniques and strategies, plus a look into the season ahead and information on other projects we’ve been working on. The report is available on the IFS website, www.ifs. RAINBOW TROUT SPAWNING RUN PROMISES GREAT REWARDS Some of our inland waters are classed as rainbow trout waters. These have slightly different season dates to our

brown trout waters. They opened 1 October this year. Tasmania’s designated rainbow trout waters are: Dee Lagoon, Junction Lake, Lake Meston, Lake Rowallan, Lake Skinner, Lake Youd, Mersey River above Lake Rowallan, River Leven upstream of Loogana Road and Weld rivers both North and South. Many waters in Tasmania hold both brown and rainbow trout. One of these waters is Yingina/Great Lake. We monitor the rainbow trout spawning run each year to keep an eye on number, sex,

weight and length of fish. We also help maintain the rainbow population in the lake. If the rainbows sampled at Liawenee Canal this week are anything to go on, anglers are in for some special fishing this season. Of the 300 fish monitored so far, the average weight is 1.3kg and length 490 mm. They’re in fantastic condition and will provide a memorable challenge for the keen angler. Rainbow trout were introduced to Tasmania from the west coast of North America in 1898. As always,

check the fishing code for specific seasons, angling methods and other regulations. PENSTOCK LAGOON BOAT RAMP IS COMPLETE The upgrade to the Penstock Lagoon boat ramp is finished. Marine and Safety Tasmania installed the flexmat in September. The project is the result of a successful Recreational Boating Fund application we made to upgrade the ramp and install a landing at one of the state’s premier trout fisheries. Many thanks to Jim Caulfield from MAST and the team at ASD Diving, for braving the chilly waters to improve facilities for anglers – boat registration and licence fees at work. INLAND FISHERIES SERVICE PRESENTS AT NATIONAL CONFERENCE Chris Bowen, Jonah Yick, Chris Boon, and Raihan Mahmud from the Carp Management Program presented work at the 2016 Australian Society for Fish Biology and Oceania Chondrichthyan Society conference, which was held from 4-8 September at Wrest Point.

There were 200 presentations and our carp team presented during the “Invasive species: impacts, detection and control” session. The team talked about the eradication of carp from Lake Crescent, the current status of carp in Lake Sorell, and the research being conducted into the Jelly-like Gonad Syndrome (JGS), which is affecting male carp in Lake Sorell. Delegates from universities, environment, and fisheries bodies around Australia attended the conference. IFS consulting scientist, Dr. Jawahar Patil presented work on his research into the use of genetics as a means to control populations of the invasive fish Gambusia holbrooki. Not all our presentations were on pest fish! Senior Fisheries Management Officer, Tim Farrell talked about the challenges of estimating the brown trout population in Arthurs Lake. All presentations were well received by other delegates, and highlighted the need to carefully manage both recreational and invasive pest fish in Tasmania.

Go Behind the Scenery From page 50

line is the go here if you don’t want to have long ‘untangle’ parties with people to the left and right of you. In among the slap-anddash nature of this activity

there is a little bit of nuance and skill, and that is around the detection of a bite. The target species often suck the bait in, so your rod also needs a soft tip section. The go-to bait back when I was a young tacker

Brad Day found a nice mako to eat in early October off the East Coast.

was rabbit, but this has evolved to chicken fillets. The rig to use is an ultra-simple running sinker rig. Slide a bean sinker on your mainline and then tie a small swivel with about 40cm of leader off the bottom of that. Then tie on your hook. Some anglers favour a long shank over a standard octopus style, but either is fine – just make sure the point is pin sharp. The great thing about getting there a little earlier in the year is that you can hone your craft, and also try to work out the other cool species that are on offer from the wharf. You should be able to find some Australian salmon, flathead and couta without any dramas. It is also a spot where a snapper can be found, so take two rods. You can use one to target the snotties and one to look for another species, or even some squid. TABLE CAPE TOOTHIES Mako are coming. There will be a number of people howling about it being too early and a waste of time to target them, but if you have the time and some berley, why not? Those are the same people who said it was a waste of time fishing for bluefin in September and October, and that’s not true; there were crews that had time to waste who came up with some good results; no crowds, great day on the water and tuna to boot. Bradley Day also managed to


catch a mako off St Helens in late September. It might have been on a drop line but it proves they are about. The areas off Sisters Beach and through the Table Cape area to Burnie are great places to start a trail and try your luck. Early in the season, having a good amount of berley on board is crucial. If you have some fish frames from previous trips and a masher at the transom, that’s a big day. Rotate through the role of smashing the frames through. A constant supply of berley is the secret, and if the ‘Masher Dude’ is tired you’ll break the trail. Share the workload for better success. Pre-frozen berley is often the go nowadays, with keen mako fishers having all sorts of means to make the mush. The ideas on how to turn fish frames and Australian salmon into a mince are many and varied. There are industrial mincers right down to garden mulchers brought into action to get the job done. Designing and building a muncher can be a good little project in itself. If you want you can also buy pre-made berley at most tackle stores. Traditionally, overhead reels are used when tackling the super-fast and speedy mako shark. The fish are strong and powerful and will take some line off you at a furious rate. If you want to take on a mako

Some blue warehou from Stanley wharf. with your big spinning reels, that’s no problem. Just make sure it is in good working order, well lubricated and has plenty of line on the spool. Deciding where to start your trail in Bass Strait is a much talked-about subject. Get out as deep as you can in 70m, or just start in 30-40m. In a prospecting mission early on in the year, I like to hedge

the bets and start in 40-45m of water. That way, if you drift in or out, you will get some good information if you get a shark coming up to the boat. Take a notebook and right down the weather pattern, tide and depth. Write down if you have seen any bait on the sounder or any other life in the water like dolphins, seals or surface bait. To page 52

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Go Behind the Scenery

Tasmania From page 51

This will all make for good intel. The very next time you can go further out and compile some notes on how that day went. In no time at all you will have a book of information that will start to add up and be useful in deciding where to start the next trip or next season. Getting a trail down in 40m early on in the season will also allow you to bottom fish quite easily while you wait. This is fantastic as there is a lot of waiting while shark fishing. While the crew should be concentrating on the berley trail and maximising any chance to draw a shark to the boat, you can still search the bottom for a feed. One rod with a deepwater rig looking for squid is a good option, with another set up to find a flathead or two. There’s a number of specialist deepwater jigs about like the ones from Japanese manufacturer GeeCrack. Alternatively, you can run two jigs on a paternoster rig with a sinker and bounce them along behind you at varying depths. When bottom fishing off the North West Coast, my new equipment of choice is a pair of welding gloves. These are inexpensive and are fantastic for handling the gurnard you will inevitably encounter. Long-nose pliers are OK but you still can have the little blighters flip the wrong way and give you a nasty sting. No one wants to have three hours of berley down and waste it due to having to come in because of a gurnard sting. If you do get hit by a gurnard spine, there are only two things that will ease the pain. The first one is swearing a lot. I don’t mean lightweight, ‘pretend’ swearing either – I’m talking about the true life swearing that would make a merchant seaman blush. This has very little medical benefit but will make you feel better. Then, once you have taught everyone on the boat some new words, you can pour hot water over the area. I would rather avoid all of this, which is why I take welding gloves. Prevention is easier than trying to work out where you’re going to get hot water from your trailerboat. ULVERSTONE The news on the coast around Ulverstone and Devonport is all about river flows. Finally we have seen the rivers settle and the water flows slow right up. Don’t get me wrong – there was some sensational fishing had when the rivers were flooded and the flows were roaring. The whitebait getting stuck in a section or resting in a back eddy before a last minute lunge upstream is awesome. It is awesome because trout are quick to see this and capitalise on it. They like to find these back eddies and feed on the hapless bait. This fishing takes a little skill and the right equipment. It also means you have to walk the bank in pretty slippery and tricky conditions to find the good spots. 52


When the water slows it becomes a little easier to find a spot to drown a worm or a piece of bank where you can throw a bibbed hardbody lure. I love fishing soft plastics for trout and have a real soft spot for the small Nemesis and T-tail Minnows from Berkley. The scent and the action are amazing. Slow rolling these with an occasional small rod tip hop will find hungry fish. The Tamar River has also enjoyed a good clean-out and refresh from the record rains of the previous month. Trout feature high on the list of species to chase from the shore or trolling in a boat. The Tail Race is a popular spot to try your luck, but there’s acres of shoreline in this massive system. SQUID INVASION The southern calamari are here in big numbers right around the state. Basically, if you can find some ground that holds some reefy sections and a bit of seaweed, or a sandy section with seagrass nearby, it’s go time. The rains of recent months have stopped, the conditions have settled and the squid are loving it. Sheltered bays and points are the preferred areas to start, but if you don’t do any good, just keep moving. You don’t have to move far. Just persist. Let the jigs have enough time to get down into the water column, and work over the hidey holes the squid like to mooch about in. If you are committed and concentrate, you will lure one up off the bottom and get a few interested in what’s going on. Squid are major busybodies. If they see a little commotion they want to see what is going on, and come over to check it out. If you do hook a squid, get another member of your fishing party to pitch a jig in behind where you are to try to catch a rubbernecker. When fishing with others

and looking for where the squid are hanging out, you can choose who might fish at what depth. What you can do is have one work the bottom and another trying the mid water. That way you can search a good section of the water area and move on to the next spot. It’s best not to have the guy throwing $30 squid jigs on 4lb fluoro really trying to work the bottom over. ST HELENS TO SWANSEA St Georges Bay at St Helens will be the place to bring smiles to Tasmanian anglers in November, should they make the trip. It is a great angling destination and should be on the cusp of most species starting to really fire. The silver trevally are sensational fun and are becoming more prominent and bigger as each new season comes on. The visual display of large Australian salmon feeding gets everyone excited, and in St Georges Bay they can often be seen harassing baitfish. Great news is there are at times yellowtail kingfish in with them as well. Yet again, some anglers will say it is too early to be targeting kingfish, but it’s never too early to practice new techniques and buy some new tackle. Kings can really frustrate and be very aggressive one day and timid as a trout the next. Watching good kings under and around the boat ignoring lures or bait is very frustrating. Fishing lighter and having some lures with flash or some flutter may get you hooked up more often. Over the years a school of kings moving through, or you stumbling onto them with some big salmon, has been an event of chance. More often than not we would only have the boat fishing gear with lines too heavy in breaking strain and rods too stiff. We’ve had a lifetime of hearing how big and powerful these fish are, and have defaulted to thinking

Jonah Yick was happy with this quality Southern calamari.

everything needs to be rated to 80lb. This mentality is not going to get a bite in the clear waters of the east coast if the fish are being stubborn. There are a few things you can do to help the probability of a yellowtail king being part of your day’s fishing. Having a designated medium casting outfit somewhere handy in the boat is the first thing I would organise. An 8-10kg, 2-2.5m rod with a 5000-size reel loaded with some good quality 30lb braid will cast a mile. Use some 40lb fluoro for your leader and have on a small stickbait ready to fly, and some larger soft plastics on hand ready to change up. The next thing to do is find water with some movement and current flow. You will catch kings out in the open and feeding with salmon, but they undoubtedly love moving water. They become much more aggressive and move with intent. That intent is to ambush any bait or food that presents itself in the current. This is where your lure or soft plastic comes into its own. Try three retrieves before dropping the bottom lip and moving position. The good old-fashioned ‘turn and burn’ is the first to try, so send a cast well out over the back of the area you are looking to fish. Keep the rod tip down and wind back fast. Pause and give a few rod tip rips and repeat until the lure is back at your feet. The next approach is the slightly trickier ‘walk the dog’, and this will take some practice with rod tip and winding timing. Get online and watch some YouTube clips, and have a practice off your local waterway in some smooth and flat water. It basically consists of winding and lifting your rod tip and pushing it down in time with your speed of retrieve. You can vary all this to get more action on your lure. The last option is a bit of a Hail Mary for me. This involves putting on a big soft plastic but rigging with as light a jighead as you can feasibly get a good cast with. Then, holding the rod tip as high as you can, wind with enough speed that the plastic occasionally breaks the surface with a flutter. You can mix this one up with a dead stop and sink every now and then. November is a good time to hone new skills or brush up on some old ones. There is no harm punching out four each of these cast and retrieves whenever the rest of the crew are bottom fishing for other species. You never know what fish could be lurking about feeling hungry, but just not interested in the bottom rigs. It’s a good thing to do when shark fishing as well. Getting onto some albacore tuna on this outfit and pulling some out of the trail is great fun. Areas to try in Georges Bay for kingfish are under the big schools of Australian salmon and around the fast-

Matilda with her very first squid and looking proud. moving water around channel marker pylons. They love to use the turbulence as an advantage in chasing bait. If you have a bigger boat and can put to sea from Burns Bay, try the shore across the bay and up and around Elephant Rock. BICHENO Those anglers who love a feed of striped trumpeter will love to flip the calendar over from October to this month. The stripy season has been shut down around the state to allow them to spawn, and now they are hungry. These fish are much coveted in Tasmania, and have the same excitement attached as Melbourne’s love of snapper. I’m happy to go out on a limb and say we too often drive over some fantastic striped trumpeter ground to get to old marks or ‘the spot’ someone caught them last year. If we placed some faith in our sounders and slowed down and used them, we would find some good spots closer to home we wouldn’t have to drive over anymore. Fishing lighter by way of leader and hooks is also another way to increase your catch rate. I see ‘stripe rigs’ that have been made from mono and hooks you could tame pacific bluefin with on Wicked Tuna. Yes, the rigs used in over 100m need to be solid and have proven themselves over a long time, but I’m talking about shallow water prospecting. In this instance, when I talk about shallow water, I mean 70m and shallower. The seabed south of St Helens and stretching down to Bicheno and beyond is littered with areas holding good numbers of stripy at these depths. Traversing these areas at a reduced speed while studying the sounder in these depths will have you find something of interest to drop on. Have your crew ready to deploy once you have worked your drift out. Take your time and get it right. This is half the battle when bottom dropping in depth. Trying to get the baits to come down through what you have picked up on the sounder. Yes, it can take a couple of practice drifts to get a real

sense of the wind and tide, but you can be fishing the bottom as you do. Practicing this skill as a skipper is crucial because the deeper you go, the trickier it can be. Make some lighter rigs up and set a rod up to fish big soft plastics, and have a play and prospect. I know this is not for everyone and you might just be out to hit them up for a good feed. Those who like to fish lighter and a little sporting can bounce and puppet a soft plastic while the rest of the crew bait fish. Remember it’s November – the month to try something new. The rivers in and around Swansea will start to see some angler action with the better weather and longer days. The bream anglers will start to hit up the Swan and the Little Swanport for some very good sportfishing. I have enjoyed a great bit of fun and a renewed fondness for trout fishing lately. This is carrying over into the bream scene, and I have been fishing with 6lb braid and 4lb leaders. I even took complete leave of my senses and purchased some 2lb leader material. It took me three knots to work out the line wasn’t faulty, and that I simply couldn’t check my knots so hard. Stalking a bream I have spotted, or sending long casts to fish too far away for me to spook, has kept me entertained. The humble bream is a tricky adversary, and sensational fun on light line. I have been using a range of floating hardbodies and vibes, and when I can’t seem to twitch and pause one up, I run the white flag up and put on a Turtleback Worm. I have no idea what the heck it is about them, but bream are super crazy over them. Cast it out long and hard. Wait for it to sink and give it a couple of flip flops. Let everyone know you’re home.Give a few little, low, rod tip rattles and pause. I don’t mean just a little pretend pause – I mean a pause that is nearly classed as deadlining and… BOOM! It’s a bite! Out in front of the river mouths of the Swan and Little

Go Behind the Scenery Swan Port rivers will be some very good Aussie salmon action on tap for the shore and boating angler. The areas along the sandy shorelines are great to catch flathead on deep diving lures for something different and a bit of fun. Any long bibbed lure you can find will work, and the go is to move from 6m into 4m as you wander down the beach. These areas are great for some long wand beach fishing, which is a sport that tends to get forgotten. Beach fishing is

a fantastic fishing pastime and delivers some great adventure if you seek out a ‘secret spot’. This is another scenario where people can go too heavy with line combinations, making casting not as effective and side currents problematic. Some people have steered away from braid for beach fishing and have stuck to the traditional monofilament lines available. I am completely the other way. Surf fishing is all about casting, and if you want to cast without looking like

DOWN SOUTH In November, the Derwent River really comes alive with bait and predators alike. The Derwent is a massive system that offers a great deal to the sporting angler. The river can be broken down into three sections, with some species of course crossing into each other. This makes for interesting angling as you are never really sure what you may encounter. The upper reaches can possibly be classified

as upstream from the Bridgewater Bridge to the rapids above the town of New Norfolk. Straight away we can see the diversity as well as the similarities in the system. While it is a very good trout fishery for both resident and sea run trout, the bream fishing is also very good. The trout won’t mind, but look for the water to clear up for the bream to really come on. Hardbody lures and soft plastics work very well in this water. You can troll the

Berley mincers can be mild or wild. Let’s put this one in the mildly wild section.

a B-grade Olympic javelin thrower, braid is king. Buy a braid-friendly 7000-8000 size reel and fill it with 30lb braid, and all you’ll want to do is cast. The fishing will go on the backburner, and all you will be saying to mates and strangers on the beach is “watch this!” Casting will now be effortless and you can leave some bait on the hooks rather than flinging it off chasing that extra 2m in a cast. Speaking of which, how good is Bait Mate? For those who don’t

know, Bait Mate is a thin, man-made spiderweb-looking gear that you can use to whip around your baits and hook shafts to keep the bait on the hook. It’s great while casting, and when the pickers are about it helps the bait stay on and work its magic. If you get sick of fishing the coastal waters in the area you can always climb up into the mountains and try your hand at Lake Leake. This trout fishery has been going very well recently for those who

hardbodies and do quite well for trout, or you can work sections of the river over from the land. There’s a heap of access points and areas to explore for the land-based angler. The bream will prefer a hardbody that floats, and you can induce a pause and a little rod tip rattle to drive them to strike. The middle section from the Bridgewater Bridge down to Tasman Bridge is where the most species of fish can be accounted for. This large section of river may even be home to some of the best black bream fishing… in the wooorld! I got my Jeremy Clarkson on there, but it is no exaggeration. This section of the Derwent has flats fishing to die for, with rocky shores and drop-offs. Down further in and around all the man-made and industrial goings-on in Prince of Wales Bay and further down at Cornelian Bay, you can try your structure fishing techniques. While you are stalking the trout and bream and making careful, well-aimed casts, you will also encounter some by-catch. This by-catch to the sporting lure angler could well be the main target for other anglers, and the good news is it is

plentiful. In this section of the Derwent you will find cocky salmon and couta with a heap of smaller flathead. It can take a while to find a good-sized keeper flathead, and a de-hooker and some light gloves are advised. Also advised is only eating the fish caught out of the Derwent once every now and then. Check the DPIPWE website for conformation and exact details. In the lower section of the river below the Tasman Bridge and on out to open sea, you can catch just about anything. The Australian salmon school up in and around the points and bays. They often attract schools of yellowtail kingfish as well. Snapper have been caught by those who hone their skills and target them. Garfish, mullet and silver trevally use the lower reaches of this system to roam and make home. There are some good areas to try for squid this time of year so have a few jigs handy. This lower section also holds some very nice sized flathead, and these can sometimes be found where water is flowing into the system or a deep channel edge. Earlier this year there was even schools of bluefin tuna accessed by keen

Tasmania pick their times – the few hours after dawn and the few hours before dusk. This is the time when you experience some great fishing. Flyfishers swear by these times, as they say the fish are “looking up” or looking to feed. This also works for clever soft plastics fishers that are set up to fish light or even unweighted. If you hug the doona or get stuck in your sleeping bag, you may miss the action. Trout like to feed in low light conditions and become far more brazen,

only to shut down later in the morning when the sun gets higher in the sky. Some good overcast conditions will often slow this up, but the end result will be the same. I had a friend whose grandfather operated on a Mexican principle while fishing the lakes. We would be up early, trying not to wake the non-fisher folk in the shack, on the water before first light and fish hard, back to the shack for lunch and a siesta before hitting the water up late in the afternoon.

Joel Howe found this healthy trout feeding on bait. anglers who were into them just 20 minutes from their homes in Hobart suburbs. We really should take on board just what a jewel this fishery really is. SANTA’S TACKLE BOX November is a time when we should start thinking about Chrissy presents for our loved ones. Particularly if that loved one is a mad keen angler. A little forward planning goes a long way, and allows anything that has sold out or not in stock to be ordered in time. Local fishing tackle stores will be brimming with new season stock. We have some great tackle store destinations in Tasmania, and what

sets them apart is the passion and knowledge of the people who work there. The experienced staff in-store have fished Tasmania all year round for every species, and their knowledge is worth its weight in gold. The little head starts and shortcuts shared by your local men and women in tackle stores will always outweigh an online saving. Developing a relationship with your tackle store and its staff will increase not only your enjoyment of fishing, but also your catch rate. So enjoy the warmer weather, get out and wet a line, remember to shop local for Christmas and be safe.

HYDRO TASMANIA WATER STORAGE INFORMATION Water Storage Information as at 13th October 2016 Lake/Lagoon

Metres from full


Lake Augusta .................................................................................................Spilling Arthurs Lake ....................................0.73 .................................................................. Great Lake .......................................12.73 ................................................................ Trevallyn Pond ...............................................................................................Spilling Shannon Lagoon ............................................................................................Spilling Penstock Lagoon ...........................................................................................Spilling Lake Echo ........................................6.31 .................................................................. Dee Lagoon .....................................0.14 .................................................................. Bradys/Binneys/Tungatinah .............0.07 .................................................................. Bronte Lagoon .................................0.05 .................................................................. Pine Tier Lagoon ............................................................................................Spilling Little Pine Lagoon ..........................................................................................Spilling Laughing Jack Lagoon ....................0.25 .................................................................. Lake St Clair ....................................1.01 .................................................................. Lake King William ............................0.17 .................................................................. Lake Liapootah ................................0.17 .................................................................. Wayatinah Lagoon .........................................................................................Spilling Lake Catagunya .............................................................................................Spilling

Lake Repulse .................................................................................................Spilling Cluny Lagoon .................................................................................................Spilling Meadowbank Lake ........................................................................................Spilling Lake Pedder ....................................0.50................................................................... Lake Gordon ....................................31.26 ................................................................ Lake Burbury ...................................0.41 .................................................................. Lake Plimsoll ...................................0.51 .................................................................. Lake Murchison ...............................0.10................................................................... Lake Mackintosh .............................0.78 .................................................................. Lake Rosebery .................................0.22 .................................................................. Lake Pieman ..................................................................................................Spilling Lake Mackenzie .............................................................................................Spilling Lake Rowallan ...............................................................................................Spilling Lake Parangana .............................................................................................Spilling Lake Cethana .................................................................................................Spilling Lake Barrington .............................................................................................Spilling Lake Gairdner ................................................................................................Spilling Lake Paloona .................................................................................................Spilling Woods Lake ...................................................................................................Spilling Whitespur Pond .............................................................................................Spilling Lake Newton ...................................2.88 .................................................................. Lake Margaret ...............................................................................................Spilling

These levels are provided for an indication of lake level only and can vary from day to day. For more up-to-date lake level information please visit NOVEMBER 2016


Promoting a responsible fishery


Stefan Sawynok

Anyone who’s had a chance to visit the wild Pacific North West will be able to tell you there’s some spectacular fishing to be had. I recently had the opportunity to do some digging under the hood of the Washington State fishery, as a part of a trip to the US presenting at a conference in San Diego. First of all, I’ll confess that everything I knew about Washington State came from watching the 90’s TV series Twin Peaks. That includes the

lessons from the trip, which I’ll share. Rather than my usual technical detail, I’ll tell the story of the fishery through the eyes of people encountered. BILL OSBORN Bill is the neighbour of the folks I was staying with, Rick and Amy Moyer. Rick is a Radio DJ/Musician who I worked with on a yearlong audio book project, a few years back. Bill is an ex-teacher in his eighties and started work at the local high school in 1968. He’s a serious guy and tells it how it is, so you always know where you stand. I had a blast getting the guided tour of his tackle box, including a full range of techniques. Bill was an early

Steve Morgan in action doing interviews at the ABT Queensland Open. fact that fishing for salmon comes with the risk of finding dead teens, that coffee is amazing, and Washington State is where cherry pies go to die. I can confirm that the latter two are true. I found an abandoned pumping station for a nuclear power plant while on the water, but fortunately no bodies. The other thing I learned from Twin Peaks is that the people are hospitable to a fault. This is also true. People everywhere bent over backward. Washington State is blessed with bountiful natural resources and beauty, and the people seem to reflect the generosity of the natural world. Being a fishing nerd with only a few days to work, I wanted to learn as much about the fishery as I could from all perspectives. I learned a massive amount in four days, thanks to the locals who each shared their perspective. Like all fisheries, the Washington Salmon and Trout Fishery has its share of conflicts. Much of the eastern seaboard of Australia faces similar clashes, and I wanted knowledge about those battles to bring back with me. There were a bunch of 54


advocate and YouTuber for a technique he called ‘twitching’ – a micro-jigging technique using some brightly coloured furry tailed jigs. I can’t wait to try out some twitching here. Bill gave me a tour of the upper parts of the Chehalis River on his custom made jet boat. The first thing I’ll say is that Bill has a fishing beast. The 150 jet motor on a broad base just flies and can go over as little as 6” of water. The area we went through allowed for a mix of bank and boat fishing. When the salmon run is on, there’ll be fishers lined up. On that front, the salmon fishery is not for those that like their space. Once the fish are in the rivers get very crowded, especially on the weekends. That’s part of the reason for the design of Bills boat; he can get into places that are impossible for traditional craft and so manages to find the fish away from crowds. Locals use a variety of innovative techniques to keep their spot both on land and on the river. Having tasted the local product, I can tell you there are good reasons to stand in line. Tasmanian Salmon is tasteless by comparison. I could spend days

listening to Bill. He has that old school wisdom that seems to be lost in the modern technological world, and he’s forgotten more about fishing than I’ll ever know. Many of the techniques we use in Australia apply equally well – spoons, hardbodies, jigs and soft plastics. The trick is getting the right lure into the right part of the water column. The fish are looking for the sign of fresh water flows that will enable their passing into the spawning pools. They tend to congregate in groups as the tide recedes, allowing the switched on fisher to land a bag. From Bill’s perspective, the main conflict was with the white gillnetters who group up with as many as 30-40 boats in the town reaches during the salmon run. I spent a good hour watching the early season hopefuls in action. There’s no doubt that once the season gets into full swing, there isn’t a lot of space for a fish to make it through. The local netters offload in the centre of town, so it’s easy enough to watch the catch coming in. You can see Bill in action on YouTube on the Bill Osborn channel. DINO BLACKBURN There seems to be a connection between food and meeting people in Washington State. I met Dino by chance as we stopped off to try out razor clams, a local delicacy which rivals the giant oysters from nearby Raymond. Their Razor clams are so big that when crumbed, you could mistake them for a piece of fish. We picked up the clams at a roadside diner, Dino’s Pizza and Grill, though we weren’t expecting him to be there. Dino is a Native American fisher from the Chehalis tribe. As I learned, there’s a lot of politics between tribes and the white community, so it wasn’t all that surprising when he was reluctant at times to answer a nosy Australian. Dino’s a very impressive man – as well as the diner, he works as a commercial gillnetter. In Washington State, the native tribal fishers have a 50% quota of all species, so you’d expect tensions to be high. If my stay was longer, I would’ve snagged a trip out with him. All the salmon that Dino takes go to processing facilities owned by the Quinault tribe. The produce from that plant is shipped all around the world. I found it hard to fault this, as here was an example of local employment. The tribes employ their scientists and hatcheries and take a pretty strict approach to the fishery. Lake Quinault was closed to fishing when I was there by the Quinault Tribe due to concerns over fish stocks. It’s not necessarily a popular stance, but it shows a great communal concern for the fishery.

The beautiful Chehalis River. The conflicts Dino reported were mainly with recreational fishers who took exception to his fishing when he was on the water. KEVIN MARKS I managed a trip to the Westport fish markets on the last day of the season. Had I been a day later, all the stores would have shut down for the coming winter. Rick wanted to introduce me to Dungeness crab – and if it sounds like all I did was eat, you’d be right. We went out onto the local piers where all the commercial fishers were cleaning up, to a small floating shop called Seafood Connections. Kevin was working away outside the store shovelling ice into large crates on a small barge that he used to ferry around the stock. The crates were stocked with some late season albacore and salmon, with a tub full of live Dungeness just behind. All the fish were in immaculate condition – no doubt the low 20s “summer” weather helps. I chatted to Kevin who picked up right away I was Australian. Kevin opened the store selling his father’s fish during lean times for the family farm and it’s grown into a very successful business. Kevin’s approach of selling direct off the boat means the seafood is very fresh, and I can personally attest that it’s the highest quality. There’s no way I would want to buy from the markets after trying out the Dungeness crab fresh from the boat. I’d love Kevin to pack up his floating store and bring it to our backyard, as I think he has the kind of know-how and problem solving I’d like to see more of in our commercial fishers. He hasn’t overcapitalized the retail side of things, his store is small and simple, yet stocked with anything you could want in local seafood. He also runs a tuna canning operation, which sells across the US. In terms of conflicts, Kevin considered his main concern being the tribal fishers who get an automatic quota of 50% of the Dungeness crab, a very profitable product.

CURT HOLT The last story of Washington Fishery came from Curt. Curt has worked in many areas of the fishery including for tribes, so he was incredibly knowledgeable about the data, which brought out my inner fishing nerd, and also the politics and conflicts between the groups. Curt filled in the gaps in my understanding about the role that hatcheries play. In the salmon fishery hatcheries play a very important role, where fish are spawned and reared before being released into the wild. Hatchery fish are fin clipped, so they’re easily identified in the wild. I was fascinated to discover that many of the hatchery reared fish return to the hatchery during spawning. Some still end up in the wild, and that presents a challenge in removing those fish. Curt’s view of the fishery was somewhat different to any of the groups I’d talked to before. The proportion of fish that make it back to the hatchery, for example, is pretty high, and there’s space for the recreational fishers to take more fish if they were more efficient in their methods. Curt highlighted the 80-20 rule, which I have discussed in an earlier article. I found it hilarious to hear it from the other side of the table. Curt cheekily suggested that if more recreational fishers could actually catch fish, then less of the hatchery fish would make it through. I just nodded my head. Speaking as one of the 80%, I knew any protest would be a lie. LESSONS FROM WASHINGTON Our perspectives are based on experience, how many fish we think there are and how many the other fishers are taking. I’m not going to judge or take sides – it would be the height of arrogance for me to tell them how to run things. From the numbers Curt showed me, which I have no reason to doubt, the data tells its own story. I didn’t get to look at the availability of information. How transparent

is the fishery? The second lesson I took away was the value of actually doing something with the fish commercial fishers catch. Fishers like Dino and Mark are adding value to their community and play a direct role in creating employment. Both own stores and do good things. I’d be the first to stand in line to defend them and their right to operate. There’s a difference between that and those who just sell into the wholesale market. Granted, the wholesale market also plays a role, but it doesn’t translate into the same sort of community roots unless there’s additional processing. Here I find my biggest criticism of the local inshore fisheries in Australia. There’s been little to no effort to add value to the product and the recreational sector make the point that they are willing to pay more to access those fish. The Queensland average price for most species outside of the big sellers is around $4.30 per kilo (ABARES). That is not great value. I don’t agree that getting rid of gillnetters is the answer. Mark and Dino demonstrate that it can work. Unless they’re willing to take risks and create that value, gillnetters should expect continued community pressure. The last lesson was in how dependant the salmon fishery is on human intervention. The wild fishery can’t sustain the overall fishing pressure and without intervention, fishing might be a lot more difficult. The tensions that are there could get a lot more severe with significant job losses. I can’t imagine the devastating impact on the locals, if the hatcheries could not operate for a few years. I guess it shows that we as fishers have a role in taking responsibility for our fishery collectively, no matter where we come from. I get the conflicts, but asking the government to play umpire is not the best answer in the long run. If we want sustainable fisheries, it’s us that should have the biggest say, not the

government. Those not willing to play a role in a more responsible fishery, regardless of which part of fishing they come from, should not expect their rights to be protected. They will be the last people I stand up for. FISHING AS A SPECTATOR SPORT – HOW TO BUILD AN AUDIENCE I will admit to being a sports tragic. I’m that guy that trolls Cricinfo for stats on my favourite players and follows the AFL and NRL websites in the off-season. If there’s a real sports event, preferably with online coverage – I’m there. Back in the late 2000s, I fished in the Rocky Barra Bounty, embarrassingly in the times when the fishing was pretty good. I managed three fish in two events and having climbed those stratospheric heights, decided to retire on top. You know, cash in on the post-retirement book deals and movie rights. The next year, I joined the work crew. The only opening seemed to be on the social media side, so I gave it a whirl. Having grown up with an endless stream of Channel 9 and Channel 7 commentaries, with the delusion of being the next Bill Lawry in all his hyperbolic glory, I launched into a constant stream of Facebook posts. At the time, the idea of live commentary was new for the event, so there wasn’t much to talk about. I learned as all commenters do, in the gaps, a steady stream of anecdotes and other rubbish gets you through. To my surprise, people started following and joining in, and not just fishing tragics. In that first year, more women commented than men. In fact, when I looked at the

This year I am aiming for an audience around the 100,000 mark. Last year we got to 70,000, so it’s within reach. In the spirit of sharing, here are some things that I have learned over the years. WHY BUILD AN AUDIENCE? Cutting to the chase, I built an audience because I loved doing commentary and interacting with the public. It helps get sponsors excited. I learned in my first year to engage young women directly and help them join the fun. In general, if a community has a fishing positive attitude, then it’s better for local stores and the community. Positive images in the community are vital to combat negative images put around by other groups. That’s why it’s good for sponsors to build a wider audience. If fishing is seen to be a good and healthy thing, then more people will be able to buy the products. If you wish to engage an audience for your event, you can’t just talk about the things you’re interested in. If you’re writing for a magazine where the audience is straightforward – the readers are similar to the writers with similar interests, the work in cultivating the audience has been done. Writers just need to insert juicy content to grab attention. With a fishing event, you have to cultivate an audience. When it comes down to it, people don’t all respond to the same things. Some people like me track scores, some speculate on what’s going to happen, others follow personalities, or like a good joke, and others want recognition themselves. If you’re going to take fishing to a wider audience, you can’t just ‘insert content for

It’s not just the fish that get attention. analytics, the audience was full of younger women. It was a 50/50 split. That year we reached around 24,000 people including viewers from Poland, Afghanistan, and Thailand – not places I associate with fishing. When I repeated the dose the year after, we achieved a much bigger audience. It wasn’t just a fluke. There’s a lot more interest in fishing than fishers realize.

fishers here’. You need to put yourself in the place of the audience and look at the event on the outside. Imagine you have a camera following the action. What are you going to share? There’s action, but think about what you remember from a good game of footy. Do you remember the big plays or the big stink? I watched the Giants vs. Bulldogs in the AFL last weekend and being a Giants

fan, it was the goal miss at the end – that and the fact Channel 7 interviewed nobody from the Giants after the game. Conflict and drama – the fun gets our attention. If all you focus in on is action, you’ll only cultivate a small audience that likes that sort of thing. WHAT IS YOUR SELLING POINT? The Rocky Barra Bounty has a great tradition and community focus. Two core values really help in building a wider audience. First and foremost, the event was created to promote Rockhampton as a fishing destination. Second, the data collected in the Bounty is used every year to help assess the state of the fishery and contributes to stock forecasts for the next year. These two things make it easy to connect with the community. The result of the Bounty is important. If it’s a good result, the whole community benefits. If catch rates are down as they have been the last couple of years, it means things aren’t going so well. If they are going up, it means good times are coming. A few years back there was a bunch of survey work done in the Rockhampton community relating to another issue – the health of the river. Around 80% of the community said that they associate healthy fish stocks with a healthy river. That survey included a lot of the non-fishing public – a key point not to be ignored. The community wants healthy waterways, because they know that development has degraded many waterways over the years. The fact there’s a connection between fish stocks and health of the waterway is something most fishers would see as a good thing. For this reason, competitions are increasingly important for monitoring the health of fish stocks. Here’s a desirable, community accepted selling point. Each event has its selling points, but I suspect most are focused on attracting competitors, not an audience. What attracts the audience will be different, and there’s your first challenge. COMPETITORS VERSES THE AUDIENCE I’ve had to fight many battles with the competitors in the past five years, some I’ve won, some I’ve lost spectacularly. In general, competitors are after whatever’s in their best interests. Things like not knowing the real score until the end, not knowing where they fished are things competitors like. Competitors like to be secretive. Sometimes what the competitors want isn’t in their best interests. Imagine if there was a rule of no television coverage for an AFL or NRL final after half time and no reporting of the score until the trophies are handed out. The television audience would die in an

instant. It would be suicide by hashtag. The audience wants to be part of the action – the closer to the final call, the more they want to know. Last year on the last day, our live scoreboard website was crashing all the time. We couldn’t even update it because of how many people were trying to access it. I’ve had to shell out the clams for some serious upgrades, because this year we plan for

and interviewing is not new, it wasn’t until I saw Steve in action that I realized just what can be done. I’ve a lot of work to do to match him. WHY WE BUILT AN APP Moving into a more content-driven world requires a change of thinking. You need the content and a constant feed of it to make it work. An app needs that. Last year’s Bounty was the breaking point for me. The last

possible and getting to know them is a good idea. Share those little details that keep the audience interested. LIVE COMMENTARY I’m one of the few people that I know who does live commentary for an event. I don’t have a lot of notes to compare and I don’t know that I’m even aware of my own process. I post whatever I can to provoke a response, sometimes talking about the

Kevin at Seafood Connections. a much bigger audience. I’m dead against hiding the scores, and the competitors should be as well. While, in their heads, it might give them some advantage. The reality is the fish are either there, and you get them, or you don’t. Hiding the scores won’t change a damn thing, but knowing might just make you work that much harder to get across the line. Fishing is the only sport I can think of that goes out of its way to allow competitors to hide their scores, and it suffers for it in gaining an audience. THE MOST POPULAR ANGLERS We often have a high school vision of popularity, that it’s the cool kids that people follow. It doesn’t work like that at all. The most popular anglers aren’t the ‘best’. I’m not trying to be harsh and I respect the skills of the best. I’ll happily talk them up, but the thing that makes them the best is often something that makes them less accessible to a wider audience. In my experience, the most popular fishers are the ones with personality. It doesn’t matter how that comes out. I love the grumpy, trash-posting guys as much as the bright personality. It takes all types to tell a story. You need heroes and you need villains. My favourite team in the Bounty is the Beer and Bundy Boys. They’re serious fishers who excel at not taking themselves too seriously. They have a fanatical family cheer squad. It’s like having a team of ten instead of a team of two. As a rule, shining a light on as many of your competitors as

action, sometimes posting photos. Other times it’s just posting something completely irrelevant. If I’m getting likes on posts and comments, I’m doing the right thing. WEIGH-INS The Barra Bounty doesn’t have a weigh-in. I know that weigh-ins have been a staple of fishing competitions for a long time, but as spectacles, weigh-ins just don’t cut it. They work in the Bass series in the US, but they have some high profile fishers with household names. The real purpose of most weigh-ins is to allow anglers to connect and talk postevent. There will be different views out there on how best to do that. In the professional circuit, the move to post-event interviews and media rather than an official weigh-in will become the go-to and fishing will be better for it. Sportfishing will evolve to become all about content. CONDUCTING INTERVIEWS Video is a big thing and live streaming is available to the masses. Where it was once an expensive exercise to share the video of competitors with the world, it’s much easier to do now. All you need is an iPhone and a good data plan. It’s a good idea to add a quality microphone. There’s a whole bunch of streaming services out there. Each targets a different audience, so it pays to research the one that will fit your needs. I have Steve Morgan to thank for the interviewing side of things. While I have been a podcaster for nearly ten years

day was fast paced and we had a huge number of fish reported at the last moment. The team was pushed as we had to get all the data in, end of event movie done and scoreboard finalized. We had more fish reported in the last hour than we did on the first day. There had to be a better way. If I’d known a better way would consume the next year, all my design and software engineering skills and push the finances to the limit, I might have thought twice. In the end, it was the right decision. We’ve just run our very first event with the ABT Bream Queensland Open, and overall the app performed well and delivered what we expected. Most importantly, come 1pm and rods down, we knew the scores. In this case, results were determined on the live weigh-in, but the principle was confirmed. The app delivers better content, leaves the event manager in control and saves time. The full edition of the app will be available after the Barra Bounty with some great goodies to come in the months ahead, now that we have the core done. This Barra Bounty, I decided to push the envelope and team up with the biggest YouTuber in fishing – Darcie Arahill. She’ll be fishing the event from Florida with her catches going on the scoreboard. She will be promoting the event live in the US, while fishing in the US. Hopefully, we hit our mark for viewers. Content is where it’s at. There’s a ton of innovation to come. Sportfishing can only get more exciting from here. NOVEMBER 2016



Get reddy for summer fun! WANGARATTA

Robbie Alexander

November is a transition month for many fish species and many anglers here in North East Victoria. We see the trout begin to slow down in the many small streams as the water starts to warm up, but we

background of redfin. Redfin were introduced into Australian waters from Europe in the 1800s for angling purposes. Redfin were bred and distributed throughout the temperate zones of Australia and by the 1890s they were introduced into waters in Western Australia. It wasn’t until the mid

negative stigma that the more infamous European carp have faced. FISHY FACTS Redfin are highly destructive on native fish species. They compete for food, can harbour fish diseases, eat fish eggs and prey heavily on newly hatched fish fry, resulting in poor recruitment for

golden perch will dominate, and the redfin numbers will eventually decline. Redfin live quite well with other imported fish species such as trout and carp, where they seem to survive well together, possibly due to the different eating habits and water temperature tolerances. When the trout are most active in the coldest water, the redfin are quiet. As the trout slow down when the water begins to warm up, the redfin become more active. In a sense I guess the two species take it in turns to feed throughout the year!

A fat redfin caught in a lagoon on a tiny bassman spinnerbait. Redfin usually only get fat like this when there are not a lot of other fish in the water to compete for food.

Terry Alexander with a large redfin caught in the lower reaches of one of the region’s small mountain streams. generally see the perch fishing pick up as they begin to get more active in the warmer months. In this area, there are two main species of perch targeted by anglers, they are the Australian native golden perch, otherwise known as yellowbelly, and the English perch, which most people refer to as redfin. REDFIN HISTORY First, let’s look at the

1900s that the redfin really gained a foothold and took off. Anglers were relocating them to new waters, as they were a praised catch and soon redfin dominated many waterways. Because redfin are such a wonderful sportfish with their hard-fighting abilities, and fantastic white juicy flesh being great on the table, they have escaped a lot of the persecution and

native fish. Macquarie perch and silver perch are probably the most affected fish by the introduction of redfin. Some fish species survive well with

Alexander Hector with a chubby redfin caught in the bottom stretches of a small stream where the water was flowing underground in some areas.

LIST OF THE MORE POPULAR NORTH EAST VICTORIAN WATERWAYS THAT HAVE REDFIN Lake William Hovell Possibly the best redfin fishery in the region, it has a huge population of redfin, most of which are small. Larger redfin to more than 2lb do exist and are caught occasionally. Small yabbies and soft plastics work well. Lake Buffalo Buffalo is not the redfin fishery it used to be due to the stocking of golden perch and Murray cod. Redfin do still exist, and there are some large fish to over 3lb to be caught by lucky anglers. Trolling bright coloured deep diving minnows works well. Golden perch are a very welcome by-catch for redfin anglers, just like Lake Buffalo’s redfin are a welcome by-catch for anglers targeting golden perch. Lake Sambell Sambell as a reasonably good population of redfin, with some fish to 35cm turning up from time to time. Soft plastics rigged with a weedless jighead can work well. Golden perch are a welcomed by-catch when targeting redfin. Lake Kerford This is the author’s favourite redfin lake. There are millions of tiny redfin in this lake. Catching one big enough to keep is quite rare, however it is such a fun place to fish. Tiny soft plastics work well in here, particularly of an evening. Lake Hume Lake Hume has a great population of redfin. Most fish caught from the bank are small, but local anglers catch larger redfin more regularly from their boats in deep water. Redfin over 40cm in length turn up frequently to experienced anglers in boats. This is an amazing place to take kids redfin fishing. Casting bladed spinners from the bank near the Ebden boat ramp in summer is sure to keep the kids entertained 56


A Lake Buffalo redfin caught on a small soft plastic with a larger than usual jighead. The reason for the large jighead was to allow the author to cast further while fishing from the bank, and also to help get the soft plastic down into the deeper water faster. others, and some compete. Where there is competition, usually one species will become dominant. When redfin exist in a waterway with Macquarie perch, redfin usually come out on top because they are such a dominant and aggressive species of fish, as opposed to the shy, laid back nature of the Macquarie perch. Macquarie perch numbers usually decline in such environments, and can even become extinct from that system. On the other hand, when redfin exist with golden perch, which can grow much larger than redfin, the

When redfin exist in a waterway with Murray cod, the Murray cod will always dominate. Redfin will eat the Murray cod fry, resulting in poor natural recruitment for the Murray cod, but before long the redfin will usually end up eaten by the large and aggressive Murray cod. The biggest redfin in the world would still be on the menu for these large native Australian predatory fish. It is quite possibly due to the abundance of small redfin that Murray cod growth rates have been so fast in lakes such as Blowering and Eildon. Redfin can become something of a self-sustaining smorgasbord for the cod!

A absolute ‘submarine’ of a redfin caught by the author’s mate Brett Corker in Lake Hume in a small soft plastic. These fish take lures occasionally, indicating how willing and hungry they are.

Redfin REDDIES TO FISHING It’s not all doom and gloom for the redfin, as they have many positives as well, which is why they are such a loved species of fish for so many Australian anglers. As mentioned, they have magnificent white juicy flesh, which is quite sought after by many anglers. They are a great sportfish and larger redfin can fight very well for their size. They are self sustaining, which means that anglers do not need to rely on stocking to ensure they have somewhere to go fishing, and best of all….they are easy

Large redfin like this fight like mad when using light tackle.

RULES Currently, in Victoria and NSW it is illegal to be in possession of a live redfin. You are allowed to keep redfin when you catch them, but they must be stored dead. It is illegal to keep a redfin alive in a bucket, live well or keeper net. It is also illegal to have a pet redfin in an aquarium. Contrary to popular belief, it is not illegal to release a redfin into the water in which it was caught in either state. Although it is encouraged by fisheries in both NSW and Victoria to dispatch redfin humanely when we catch them, it is not a legal requirement and it is the angler’s decision whether to release or kill the redfin they catch. to catch, making them the ideal fish species to target when introducing kids to the wonderful sport of fishing. Redfin do tend to overpopulate waterways, resulting in a stunting of their size as they clean away any food sources quite quickly. As a result, quite often anglers chasing redfin can fish a location and catch dozens, even hundreds of small redfin without actually catching one big enough to keep. I remember back in 2011, my best mate Sandy Hector and I fished Lake Eildon from Sandy’s boat with soft plastics. We caught approximately 120

their growth rates skyrocket and they quickly become the large, rogue, killing machines that clean up many small redfin. That’s why quite often, when you are catching stacks of small redfin, occasionally one will turn up that is bigger than 10 of the small ones put together! TECHNIQUES Redfin are an easy species to catch and can be caught by many different techniques. My favourite technique for targeting redfin

A Lake William Hovell redfin caught on a Damiki Air-craw soft plastic bobbed up and down on the bottom. cast, or how deep the water is. I like to use the lightest jighead possible. Something around 3g is great for redfin, but may take a while to sink, and may not cast far enough. In this case, a 5g jighead may be beneficial, or even a 7g jighead in deep water. Bladed spinners work exceptionally well on redfin, Although not a monster, this redfin is better than average for Lake Kerford, and fell to a soft plastic. fish, sometimes you can put on a larger yabby that many of the small fish will not attempt to eat. It may sit there for a long time and not get a bite, but when it does there’s every chance it may be a half

decent redfin. When I am bait fishing for redfin from a boat, I usually set up a second rod with a large yabby, and refer to this rod as ‘the night watchman’. When I get a bite on that rod, I get very excited!

A nice sized redfin caught on a soft plastic with a black and yellow coloured nuckelball jighead. Redfin love bright colours. so too do small minnows, blades, and lipless crankbaits. When trolling for redfin in a lake, I like something really bright that gets down deep. I often troll with a Halco Crazy deep in fluorescent colours. If bait fishing, worms will work very well. Small yabbies are also a great redfin bait, so too are live shrimp. If you are catching stacks of small

A bigger than average sized redfin caught in Lake Kerford.

Decent sized redfin are a great table fish, favoured by many anglers due to their white juicy flesh. redfin (give or take some… it’s always hard to count past five or six). All day we just kept on catching small redfin, hand over fist… one after another. Of all of the redfin we caught, we never kept a single redfin. Not one was big enough! The following year, I returned with my kayak and

caught about a dozen redfin and kept half of them. What often happens when redfin overpopulate is that there will always be those few that will be a bit bigger than the rest, that can start feeding on the smallest redfin, as they are highly cannibalistic. Once they eat a few small redfin,

is with soft plastics. I find that redfin cannot allow a brightly coloured soft plastic to swim past their nose them trying to attack it. My favourite is the Strike Tiger 2” Curl-Tail Grub in whitebait pearl colour. The size of the jighead I use depends on how far I need to

Lake Hume is a wonderful place to head in the summer months, particularly on hot evenings. Combining swimming with fishing is a great way to cool off before collecting a feed. NOVEMBER 2016






Win a pack of Pocket Balls – instant reusable pocketsized heat packs that are safe, waterproof and available in a variety of sport themes, including footy, cricket, golf, tennis, soccer and more! Activated by simple click of the disk inside the ball. To find out more visit

Name: Address:


The first correct entry at the end of each month will win the prize pack. SEND ENTRIES TO: VFM Find-a-word Competition, PO box 3172, Loganholme Qld 4129



Phone (day):


Congratulations to R Salisbury of Northcote, who was last month’s winner of the Find-a-Word Competition! Monthly winners receive a sponsor prize pack. Prize delivery can take 8 weeks. – VTFM

BARRA COUNTRY by Brett Currie


The subscriber prize winner for September was C Johnston-Gross of Crib Point, who won a Boatcatch valued at $599. All subscribers are entered in the monthly subscriber prize draws. Prize delivery takes up to 8 weeks. – VTFM


GEORGE & NEV by Michael Hardy

The answers to Find the ZMan Logo for September were: 8, 13, 18, 22, 24, 27, 35, 39, 40, 44, 47, 60, 68, 73, 82. – VTFM The Find the ZMan logo prize winners for September were: J Saunderson of Chelsea, P Castle of West Rosebud, F Oleszko of Braybrook, C Smith of Traralgon, S Woolstencroft of Warrnambool, A Foster of Drouin, C Peeters of Colac, J Sullivan of Georgetown, T Sowter of Rosebud, R Meaney of Tungamah, K Tripp of Glenroy, J Drummond of Moe, A Woolnough of Narre Warren South, A Osborne of Mallacoota, K Robinson of Ocean Grove, B Shelton of Romsey, D Holman of Bacchus Marsh, J Ploughman of Claremont, R Salisbury of Northcote, K McCoombe of Merimbula, T Darker of Daylesford, R Bragg of Birchip, D Hedley of Hamilton, J Hines of Leopold, P Geale of Georgetown, L Simonis of Thurgoona, R Newton of Wangaratta, T Sweeney of Emerald, I Lovel of Bealiba, G Ball of Clifton Springs, L Henry of Kalimna, M Moulding of Red Hill, R McAuliffe of Wangaratta, L Cruar of Portland, H Kirk of Hadspen, G Whinney of St Albans, J Randall of Torquay, C Auldist of Warragul, A Grant of Geelong West, H Siesmaa of Ferntree Gully. Prize delivery takes up to 8 weeks. – VTFM



Come along to our first ever conference about Murray cod and hear all about: • • • • • • • • •

Record cod stocking in Victoria - cod are back! Targeting BIG Murray cod, with Rod ‘Codmac’ MacKenzie The importance of stocking, habitat, fishways and e-flows for cod How cod fishing has changed, with Rod ‘Harro’ Harrison The slot-limit revolution Indigenous connections to Murray cod Koi herpes and the post carp plan to boost cod even more How to handle cod for maximum survival, with Paul Hardy Smith Keynote address from the ‘Codfather’ Dr Stuart Rowland

We’ll also outline how the State Government’s is investing $46 million into the Target One Million plan to grow participation, improve Murray cod fisheries and get more people fishing, more often. A panel discussion will end the evening with questions from the audience welcome.

When Sunday 11 December 2016, from 9am until 3.30pm.


Eastbank Conference Centre, 70 Welsford St, Shepparton.


Email or call 03 8392 6876 to reserve a free seat. Registering helps us plan seating and catering, which will include lunch and refreshments.



River flows are high MILDURA

Darcy Scherger

With river levels high with a fast flowing pool here in the Mildura region, water continues to be dirty

and makes it hard for the local lure fishers. The dirty water has managed to stay around, but there have been several good reports in some locations around Mildura with the odd fantastic golden perch.

The river was high in Mildura last month.

These fish have been caught mainly on bait, with live bait producing the goods. Live shrimp and worm cocktail has been very productive, as live yabbies have been going very well in the snaggy waters and below weirs. The Mildura Weir was pulled out late September to early October as a result of the increased river flows. The rain continued to make its way down and it should settle down and clear up for cod season come 1 December. The cod anglers want our pool to be steady and clear, but it’s a long shot. The water will have to travel for a productive cod opening. Dams and reservoirs will be quite popular in cod season, as the water tends to be clearer and more productive for lures. The acting Executive

The author with a solid golden perch caught at Mildura on a Jackall TN60. Director of River Management, Andrew Reynolds, mentioned in September that the weir was removed. Flows were predicted to reach about 43,000ML/day for the first time since 2012. Hopefully, these large amounts of water

flowing through the region will steady up. People can chase yellowbelly on lures with success. There have been small bursts of golden perch captured. Golden perch should become more active as water

clarity improves and the temperature increases. Jackall TN50, 60 and 70s, small Carl’s Compact Bassman Spinerbaits, small Oar-Gee, AC and Custom Crafted will be productive over the summer for solid golden perch.

Anyone’s guess this month YARRAWONGA

Tony Bennett

Either Nostradamus or that German World Cup tipping octopus would be better off writing this report. Honestly, with recent rains and surrounding areas being in flood, who knows what the fish will be doing today, tomorrow or in a week? Traditionally, the water above Majors Creek up to Bundalong

and surrounding backwaters should be your first port of call. TN60 Jackalls, hardbody lures in the 50-70mm size range or smaller profile spinnerbaits in natural colours would be my preference. If water conditions don’t clear in a hurry, a nice bunch of worms or a smaller yabbies will be unbeatable. Report wise, spring is by far the worst time of the year for any fishing action. A closed cod season and yellas that haven’t started to fire yet makes things slow. In saying that, the

one bright spot came late in the month when school holidays hit. Armed with a handful of bait and endless enthusiasm, kids hit the lake in search of some angling adventures. Young gun Joel O’Dwyer was a standout and got all others inspired. Off the back of landing some nice yellas, Joel got a fair surprise when his bunch of scrubbies ended up in the bucket mouth of a monstrous 110cm cod. A super fish and a good reward for a keen young fisho. Regardless of closed

DAM LEVELS brought to you by w w w. b a r g a i n b o a t b i t s. c o m . a u

Dam............................... % Full

Dam............................... % Full

LAKE/DAM Aug Sep Oct Cairn Curran 31 51 28 Dartmouth 54 60 63 Eildon 50 59 74 Eppalock 35 48 104 Fyans 61 69 83 Greens 49 69 62 Hepburn 73 104 105 Hume 74 96 47 Lauriston 79 99 82 Malmsbury 36 50 100

LAKE/DAM Aug Sep Oct Mulwala (Yarrawonga) 91 87 89 Newlyn 82 95 44 Nillahcootie 88 103 102 Rocklands 16 22 17 Taylors 45 72 23 Tullaroop 20 45 27 Upper Coliban 82 100 61 Waranga 82 90 12 Wartook 79 98 110 William Hovell 102 102 102

(All levels correct at time of going to press. Dam levels can change at any time, so please check with local authorities to ensure safe boating and fishing.) 60


season or not, this fish was always going to be released and that’s a credit to our new generation of fishers. Tanner Irvine was another to spend every minute of his holidays trying to tempt a fish or two, with countless trips to the tackle store from mum to keep the bait supply up. Tanner saw plenty of action and was rewarded on numerous occasions. Even with fish on the smaller side, it’s a great way for kids to spend their time. Cooper and Hunter Lonergan were another duo to put in plenty of effort for some nice catches. Unfortunately, Hunter did most of the watching with his turn to catch fish coming soon! For those who are keen on their tournament fishing, organisation is well under way for the 2016 Yamaha Cod Classic. The Cod Classic promises to be huge with something for everybody. Prizes include seven boating packages plus plenty more. For more information, call in and see us at Lake Mulwala Fish Camp and Ski, the official Cod Classic shop, opposite the post office in Mulwala, or find us at our Yarrawonga store located between Rivers and One Zach. For up to date fishing reports or further information call (03) 5744 1667. In closing, I’d like to send my sincere condolences to the family of a great man, Stephen Gack, killed recently in an accident on the Hume Highway. ‘Gacky’ was a passionate representative in the fishing industry

Tanner Irvine with a nice little school holiday cod. and was more than just a salesman – he was a friend. Full of energy, up for a joke and always looking to cut a deal, he will be sorely missed. • If you are visiting town, I urge you to call into Lake Mulwala Fish, Camp & Ski (opposite the post

office) in Mulwala and say G’day. We are your largest Murray cod-specific shop in Yarrawonga/ Mulwala and specialise in all things ‘green’! For any information on the upcoming events or fishing reports, give us a hoy on (03) 5744 3133.

Big rains wash slate clean



Rod Mackenzie

The almost biblical rains that have fallen across the lower half of NSW and Victoria over the past month have changed the face of a well-trod fishery. All that we have come to know and rely on has been washed away in the turbulent flows of change. Creeks and rivers now run fast with muddy flow and will do so well into the open of the cod season if the rains continue. Tricks of seasons past will be lost in these turbid flows and anglers will be forced to shift from what they know in order to put a bend in the line. The use of lure and fly will be lost

CHAMPION 198 Location: NSW

$36,000 SKEETER SX180 The Murray River has broken the banks, ensuring an excellent breeding season for native fish and the promise of a good feed of yabbies.

Most spring run golden perch are in excellent condition. in the rolling mud, as will surface and soft plastics. Bait will be the mainstay of most early season angling encounters and, with a little nous, will open new doors to some excellent angling opportunities. Golden perch are easy game and bite well in the pockets of backwater on baits of shrimp and worms. Large rolling eddies with jutting timber snags will hold good numbers of well fed perch that are revelling in the heaven sent bounty of freshly washed edibles. As the water continues to warm, the bite will escalate as the breeding run peaks in the flow. Huge numbers of carp will also sweep in on the bait, as will the odd eel-tailed catfish that are now starting to make a comeback at many locations. Rigs are many, but a basic running sinker rig straight through to the hook

is simple and effective. Hook size is dictated by the bait used and sinker weight should be just enough to hold bottom. Some anglers prefer a paternoster styled rig, which is all good and well under calmer conditions. In dirty flow, the same rig sees the bait flail around in the current like a feather in the wind. It’s very hard for a fish to zero in on the exact location of the bait, especially dirty flows where last moment visual locking is taken out of the equation. The running sinker rig pins the bait in position and the fish can simply follow the scent trail up the flow and onto the bait. It’s the small things in fishing that make the big difference. I use this style of rig for all dirty water bait fishing scenarios, including giant Murray cod once the

season reopens. Along the Murray, good numbers of perch have been caught at most locations from Swan Hill through Robinvale, Wemen and beyond. It’s a seasonal bonanza as the fish feed in the dirty flows that only come with a well-timed flood. If the past is any true indication, yabbies should start to move very soon. With this event, the camp cooker will waft the delicious odour of fresh cooked yabbies in the breeze. I love these tasty crustaceans and welcome their number in the flows. Fishing will take a swing from the norm with the coming season, but the high water will bring a new flush of life and a ripper breeding season for our native fish.

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Like us on facebook for automatic updates NOVEMBER 2016


Stocking mishap brings smiles WANGARATTA

Robbie Alexander

Rain has drenched North East Victoria (and the rest of the state) throughout September, leading to widespread flooding. This

just fantastic. With the increased flows comes increased food. More worms get washed into the system with each rain event, and there are more aquatic invertebrates than usual and more microorganisms coming from submerged grass growth

of the willow trees has allowed the water to warm up too much. There are still a few trout in there, but not a huge amount. On a positive note, less trout in a river usually leads to larger trout, and I have already heard of one 4lb brown being lost in the King

Lauretta Alexander had been enjoying catching trout in the swollen streams this season, landing this nice fish on a lightly-weighted bunch of worms. is short-term pain for longterm gain in the Ovens River catchment. Throughout September, the trout fishing has been very good in the upper reaches of the catchment. Some anglers have found the fishing tough due to the high water, however most anglers, or at least the most experienced anglers, have had an awesome start to the season. Most inexperienced anglers with less than 5 years of fishing experience are in unfamiliar territory fishing in these flooded creeks and rivers, which are carrying the most water that they have carried since March 2011. The law of averages suggests that by November the streams should all be settling

as it breaks down. As a result of the increased food, we should see some fantastic growth rates for trout in the streams this spring. I have already caught trout this spring that have been in great condition. Once November comes, with a decent flow of water and other food sources becoming available such as grasshoppers and mudeyes, which should be abundant this year. Things are looking great for trout fishing this November! If you’re chasing trout, try the Ovens River upstream of Bright. If we get a lot of rain leading up to November and the Ovens River is really high, try the Buckland River or the Buffalo River above Lake Buffalo. Although large, these rivers are a bit more

A typical sized small stream brown trout caught in a tributary of the King River recently. The streams have been fishing very well so far this spring, particularly for anglers using worms as bait. nicely. Given the enormous amounts of rainfall that we have had, I dare say that even the small streams will have great flows of water this November, which is 62


manageable during high water flows and both have good numbers of trout in them. The King River around Cheshunt has declined as a trout fishery since the removal

Between Top Crossing Hut (Near Lake William Hovell) and Pineapple Flat, there is kilometres of rarely accessed water in the King River, where only the diehard trout anglers with a super keen sense of adventure dare to go…. and reap the rewards for their efforts! Around Wangaratta, I am predicting that the Ovens and King rivers will still be higher than usual, however they should be fishable to bait anglers drowning a bait in an attempt to catch a carp. Remember that the Murray cod season remains closed for the entire month of November, and it is illegal to target Murray cod during this time. Now for some super exciting news! Victorian Fisheries has committed to stocking 50,000 golden perch into the Ovens River at Wangaratta! In recent times, I have become increasingly frustrated at the lack of ‘catchable’ fish species in Wangaratta. For years we have only had Murray cod, which

Ryan Brockwell was very excited to have the opportunity to go fishing in Merriwa Park during the spring school holidays recently. took our concerns on board, and have come up with a solution. It is unclear exactly when the golden perch stockings will take place, as it’s subject to availability. It’s also unclear whether they will be stocked in one lump sum, or over several smaller stockings. What is clear is that

Gus Sirianni pounced on the opportunity to go fishing in Merriwa Park recently, and landed quite a few of these yearling rainbow trout. River at Cheshunt this spring. Upstream above Lake William Hovell there is a fantastic number of both brown and rainbow trout in the King River. A four-wheel drive is required to access the King River above Lake William Hovell, or a total lack of respect for your two-wheel drive… In that section of King River, there is easily accessible water for a few kilometres just upstream of Lake William Hovell. There is also access much further upstream in the headwaters via Mt Cobbler or Mt Stirling. These upper reaches, around Pineapple Flat and King River Hut, offer some superb trout fishing – some of the best in the state in my opinion! That area is subject to seasonal road closures though, so it may pay to check with Parks Victoria as to whether the gates are open or not before you plan your trip.

is great for sport anglers, but no good for kids, families and spring time anglers. Recently, I gave fisheries Victoria some feedback from many of Wangaratta’s licensed anglers, and fisheries listened,

for the first time since 1995, golden perch will be stocked into the Ovens River to provide angling opportunities to licensed anglers, with the hope that the stocking may start around

Christmas time this year. On a side note… Wangaratta has just had its first ever taste of family friendly fishing. Something I have been working towards for a long time is to get yearling rainbow trout stocked into Merriwa Park, particularly during the winter school holidays. The pond that I had suggested is the deep pond behind the lawn tennis courts. Well… they were stocked just in time for the September school holidays, but through a slight mishap! They were put into the wrong pond. Instead they were stocked into the pond next to the kindergarten. This proved to be extremely popular with locals flocking to the pond to fish for these yearling rainbow trout. I doubt that this pond will be stocked again, but I am seriously hoping that the Wangaratta council can see the positive benefits that this fish stocking has had on the young people and families here in Wangaratta, and allow Victorian Fisheries to continue the stocking into next winter. Victorian Fisheries are as keen as mustard to stock this pond and develop it into a family friendly fishery to add to the growing list of these fantastic little waterways, so am I, and so are the kids! Let’s hope that the Wangaratta council does not let everyone down.

Once word got out that trout had been stocked into Merriwa Park, kids, families and teenagers all came out of the wood work. It was an enormous success!

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Rivers turned into turbid washing machines SHEPPARTON

Nick Brown

This has been one of the hardest months to report on in our region. The wet winter has rolled over into a very wet spring,

and in early October the local Broken and Goulburn rivers have been hovering around the minor flood level and on some occasions, bursting their banks and overflowing into some of the local streets. All this water has caused many anglers headache,

as it’s just been too wet to fish. Almost every track in and out of the bush has had too much water on it to be accessed by car, and even walking down to the river banks has become extremely dangerous. All we can hope for is that the rains eases up

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and the rivers can go back to a stable fishing height, because there won’t be much to report on next month if the levels are the same. This time of year we normally see a week or two of extreme heat that really fires up the yellowbelly, so hopefully warming water temperatures should see a hot yellowbelly bite. The Broken River will have plenty of old creek beds and run-offs full of water, and these can sometimes hold fish after a flood. These areas will almost always hold carp, but in the past, I have caught yellowbelly on worms in these areas too. The Goulburn has had a huge flush of water and it now becomes a whole new beast to tackle in your boat. Large logs you think are there may have moved, and there is the chance a once clear run of water is littered with big stumps that like to play havoc with unsuspecting boaters. Make sure if you do get on the water that you go slow and re-evaluate your fishing spots, as I can almost bet they have all changed. In November we see Shepparton’s biggest and best tackle events. The Trelly’s Tackle Spectacular is set to be even bigger than the 2015 event. With leading fishing companies represented on the night and guest speakers. The expo will again be held from the Shepparton showgrounds and all the action will kick off from 6:30pm. For just $10 entry, you give yourself the chance to win a stack of quality prizes. There will be drinks and a BBQ available on the night, so make sure you all get down there, as it’s a night that should not be missed by any fisho, from the expert to the beginner. The Tackle Spectacular will be held at the Macintosh Centre on Friday 11 November. A week prior to the Tackle Spectacular there is another expo at Solar City Marine. I will be there on the day, so it would be great to catch up with any readers. The last time the event was held, it was a great day with plenty of giveaways and boating and caravanning discounts. The Solar City Marine Expo will be held on Sunday 6 November SHEPPARTON LAKE The weed situation is still getting worse, with it being almost impossible to troll any lures more than 4ft deep. As well as the weed under the water, there is also plenty of surface weed floating around, which makes it very hard to fish out in the middle. There is now only 3-4 spots

Kaleb Oxley with a nice redfin from Craigmuir Lake. that you can fish away from the weed, which can make these areas pretty crowed. The slimy weed is just too thick to have a solid fishing session at the lake, and it’s becoming very frustrating, as there is so many good fish in the lake. Let’s hope that the local council can clean it out, because if it gets any worse, the lake will become unfishable. LOCAL CHANNELS With the rivers being so full and pretty much unfishable, more locals have been fishing the channel systems in the spring. With all the rain around, the redfin have been on a hot bite with fish up to 40cm being caught mostly on lures around the edges. With all the rain comes wash into the water and in the wash there is plenty of food for the fish. I managed three smaller fish on small poppers in early October, but there is still big fish in amongst the small ones. There have also been reports of more yellowbelly and cod being caught when chasing redfin, but I’m not sure if these fish have come in through flood waters. It adds to the excitement while fishing the channels. KIALLA LAKES All the rain saw the lakes spill for the first time in six years, and the last time the lakes spilled the fish fired right up. There is always the risk of the fish leaving the lake, but hopefully like the last time it spilled they stay put. The water is a lot dirtier now, so I would use lures with more vibrations, and

spinnerbaits if the sun’s out. There will be plenty of food around the edges, so there will be no need to cast out too far. For those using bait, anything live will work well, just keep it near the edges. I had one report during the flood times of a catfish being caught on worms. I have caught two catfish before in the lake, but that was around 10 years ago. CRAIGMUIR LAKE Craigmuir Lake has fished well in this wet spring, but only on the dry days. I am not sure if this is because it’s the only time people are fishing, or that the lures are more effective in sunny conditions. Kaleb Oxley has been catching plenty of fish lately at the lake using soft plastic vibes, mostly in pink colours. Slow rolling these from the bank is a very successful way to catch redfin in the lake. If the water temperatures rise, I would expect to see a lot more yellowbelly being caught. WARANGA BASIN With all the rain around, the wind hasn’t been as big of an issue, but it takes a lot of guts to fish the basin in any the of rain or storm. There has been the odd report of redfin up to 2lb being caught around the caravan park on bait. The lake is almost at 100%, which can only be a good thing for the summer months. Last year there were some big cod caught in the basin, so I would expect after cod opening there will be anglers targeting these fish on bigger lures.

Lake Jindabyne trout luring JINDABYNE

Steve Williamson

Welcome to November, the last month of spring. It’s closer to summer and even Christmas isn’t far away. After what was a very cold and wet winter and early spring, I think I am looking forward to a bit of summer. Talking of how wet the last few months have been brings me to the exciting news. The ground is so wet in the Snowy Mountains region, all the rivers and streams are in fantastic condition and there’s so much ground water it would take an extremely hot summer to dry up the springs that feed the mountain streams. We’ll be having one of the best fishing seasons since the 1980s. The once famous Monaro flyfishing streams are all flowing again and with a little restocking over the last five or so years the only problem we’ve had is that there’s almost nobody fishing them, including me.

after that you’d better be fishing deep. Lake bait fishing has been good. Team up your rig with worms and artificial baits, with the worm sitting on the bottom and the artificial bait floating about 25cm above the worm. Meal worms are an old-fashioned but very productive bait for trout. They’re excellent fished off the bottom and also very good fished a metre or more under a float where they look very much like a bunch of maggots to the cruising trout. Best areas for baitfishing at the moment have been Waste Point area, the Claypits and at East Jindabyne near Rushes Creek. For the lake boat trollers, surface trolling lures at 2m deep and lead core lines at three colours or 30m will be the best methods to get trout at the moment. It’s worth trolling some minnow lures early in the morning off the lead core lines. StumpJumpers have been good. The 5cm Bullet


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BEST METHODS TO CATCH A TROUT Best method – bank-based bait on the lake with artificial bait or scrub worms. Best lake trolling lure – Tasmanian Devil green and gold number 111 and Y131. Best lake area – Creel Bay and Waste Point area and Stinky Bay, the Haven. Best fly method lake – black weighted Woolly Bugger and Williamson’s Goldfish. Best River Fly Fishing– black bead head nymphs and a size 12 tea tree beetle or white moth. Best River Lures – trout pattern Bullet Lures and Striketiger Hawg in black and gold. Best lake spinning lures – Tasmanian Devil number 111 and 5cm trout pattern Bullet Lures. We need more anglers out there to give us an update. The fishing is most likely very good and the few that are fishing the streams are keeping the good news to themselves. The start of November is the time for the annual Snowy Mountains Trout Festival – get onto the web to find out more at Let’s look in more detail at what to expect this month. For the flyfishing enthusiasts on the rivers and streams, we’re now seeing plenty of white moths and tea tree beetles. Soon we should see the start of the hopper season. With the water level on the lake still quite high, flyfishing the edges of the lake early and late in the day is still very worthwhile. Fishing the small bays and inlets has been good and we’re still seeing cruising trout that are very catchable. Be careful not to spook the fish. Woolly Buggers, Craig’s Night Time and Williamson’s Goldfish have been the flies well worth using at dawn and dusk. The shallow bays on the lake are worth a try before the sun rises, but

Lures are really gaining popularity as one of the best minnow style trout lures in Australia. The 20g Tasmanian Devil lures have been gaining in popularity with boat trollers over recent years. It may be because of the larger and clearer volume of water in our lakes that anglers are changing to a lure that dives a little deeper and has a slightly stronger action. The best Tasmanian Devil colours at the moment have been the Canberra killer, Willy’s special 111 and the new 2016 Y131


Kate Rogers with a rainbow trout – one of the ex hatchery trout that she caught on a Tasmanian Devil lure. yellow mongrel. Clearer water often means the trout will go deeper when the sun is high. Best areas to troll at the moment with the high lake level have been the East Jindabyne islands, Hayshed and Hatchery Bay and up at Creel Bay. Lure spinning has been good early and late in the day and should continue that way for a while yet. There are trout about and the best fishing is in the shallows early and deep water later in the middle of the day. Try minnow lures like floating Rapalas, Stumpjumpers and lures in rainbow and brown trout patterns, or gold colours to represent the Jindabyne goldfish that trout love to chase and eat.

Matthew Caldwell with a rainbow caught on a soft plastic.

Soft plastics have been gaining in popularity for trout over coming years. While the usual paddle-tail and curltails have all been great, the Strike Tiger nymphs and the 2” Hawgs are very lifelike. Fished with very light jigheads, these are catching some great trout and are worthwhile trying, especially in the rivers. Don’t stay in one place too long and only put in a couple of casts in each area. If you’ve been following my Lake Jindabyne Trout Fishing Adventures on Facebook, you would have seen the new Bullet Lures that we’ve been trying out and the newer larger minnow has again been proving very successful, both in the lake and on the rivers. • If you would like some personal guiding, I will be available over the coming months for fly-fishing tuition and lake trolling trips. Lessons can be booked from 2 hours’ duration, and trolling trips from 3 hours to a full day. If you want to know more about the latest in fishing conditions, just give me a call on (02) 6456 1 551 or check out my website at au. You can also see our daily Facebook updates at https://www.facebook. com/LJTFA.

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Lake and loaded with water at Lake Eildon Weather patterns are all over the place right across the country with wide spread flooding and lakes


Andy McCarthy

spilling over their walls. Its almost bittersweet – great to see our lakes filling, heartbreaking for our farmers when it all hits at once. These adverse weather conditions have done nothing to slow down the action for us anglers. For whatever reason, yellowbelly fired in early September and are going gang busters, even though the water temperature is still around 14°C. Generally, they start to fire at 16°C+, so I’m not sure what’s going on. I’m

not going to complain, that’s for sure. What’s interesting in my opinion is a good number of reports coming in of loads of small fish around the 30cm mark are on chew. We haven’t seen good numbers of fish this size for 5-6 years. A vast majority over the journey have been a bigger, more robust class of fish in the 40-60cm range. Don’t get me wrong, we’ll still see plenty of big models as well, but it’s apparent that this fishery is in amazing

condition, going from strength to strength. I’m predicting we’ll see multiple yellas over 20lb this season. Cod are just on fire, but the biggest key is time on the water for the bite windows, which are still quite short in duration and random. There have been good reports of green fish between 45-85cm and one cracker at 98cm. There’s been a lot of discussion around what’s happened to the reddies – it’s a popular opinion that the massive influx of Murray

cod and golden perch over the past 5 years could be responsible for the shortage of reddies. If juvenile redfin have been their main diet, it makes sense. The carp numbers have taken a beating as well, which is a good thing. I’m also convinced the trout have copped a bit of a battering too. So stay safe on the water. Look out for floating debris as it’s still flowing in big time and I would hate to see anyone damage their craft or get hurt.

Smaller yellas than last year BONNIE DOON

Wayne Harris with a chunky cod caught on a StumpJumper.

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There’s been a load of cod fishers coming to the Bonnie Doon area from up north, taking advantage of the fact that we can target these awesome sportfish year round now. As the lake continues to rise at a great rate, the fishing just seems to get better and better.

Over the last two years, the smallest yella I managed was 50cm and the largest was 63cm. The biggest so far this season is a 44cm and the smallest is a 24cm. This is one of the reasons I love fishing – it’s forever evolving and keeps you mentally active all the time. Sometimes I think too hard and go around in circles, but I’m not the only one, am I?

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Bailey Thomas with a nice yella. It’s great for everyone who fishes and uses the lake for whatever floats their boats. Reports are consistent of yellas schooling up on the rocky margins amongst the trees. Using your electronics to your advantage is crucial while searching for them. Lots of yellas around the 40-45cm mark have been reported and by all reports, trolling seems to be the most popular and productive method. Last year, most of the schools were held up on big trees and jigging grubs slowly up and down was the best method. It’s funny how things change – not only methods, but also the size of fish.

And this year it seems that white is the new purple and black. Over the last 5-6 years they were the go-to colours, but white seems to be winning in the last three months. I still believe any coloured lure in front of a hungry active fish will be eaten. You don’t need to spend a million bucks on expensive lures if you’re on a budget. The most important thing is a quality sounder, because if you’re just guessing depth and structure, it’s largely all luck. On a massive lake like Eildon, it’s key to locate them then try and catch them. Good luck on the run into Christmas.

The recent arrival of the new Doon Bridge has everyone excited.

Water time to be fishing GOULBURN RIVER

Steve Vidler

With the best possible start to a spring season this year in regard to rainfall, things are getting better for fishers in the upper Goulburn area. Much of Victoria and indeed large expanses of the whole country received above average rain to record flooding. The health of our river systems and subsequent quality and abundance of fish is truly exciting. As well as a great natural flush of the waterways, the demand for irrigation water downstream of Lake Eildon is much less than in the previous few years, allowing for more natural flows and settled fishing activity. Bait has been the absolute standout for fishing enthusiasts in our area over the early to mid-spring and start of the trout fishing season. With scrub worms and the standard ‘run of the mill’ earthworms being naturally being flushed out from their earthen hiding holes and washed into our streams, creeks and rivers, it’s no wonder they’re the choice of anglers at this time of year, accounting for plenty of trout of all sizes and some quality redfin as well. Spinning bladed lures such as Celtas have worked well, as usual, as the added vibration and commotion of the spinning blades attracts attention in the discoloured water. Local fish magnet Nick Taylor has been having great success during times of slightly discoloured water and subsequent high flows using Z-Man GrubZ in motor oil colour with the addition of a blade on

the jighead. The ultraviolet visibility and the added flash of a blade on jig heads such as the TT Lures, Rev Heads has certainly made the difference in attracting some great trout around this area. Flyfishers have had a great season on the trout so far this year. Again, fish are in better than average condition. Throughout September the cooler temperatures seem to have delayed a lot of insect hatching activities. This will certainly kick off in coming weeks and months with warmer weather. Trout being targeted later in the day by local and visiting fly fishers have been unusually indiscriminate, taking a variety of flies but no real pattern to aim at. As larger

the usual ways and demand more observation by flyfishers to examine what fish are chasing and ‘match the hatch’ more closely. The good old Eildon Pondage has been consistently fishing well, with regular stockings of catchable-sized trout and ex-brood monsters from the nearby Victorian Fisheries Snobs Creek Hatchery. Worms, mudeyes, local dough and PowerBait have all been working well at the pondage. Tassie Devil style lures in pink, orange, lime green with various splashes of these colours have been taking plenty of fish. Although many other variations of lures catch plenty of trout in the Eildon Pondage, these time-favored classics continue to be the

As the local streams start to clear and flows subside, the action will stabilize.





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With the usual worms being flushed through the system, bait is working wonders. NOVEMBER 2016


Trout out and getting about CTL GIPPSLAND

Will Thompson

It’s been one of the best trout openings this decade and everyone seems to be back into trout mode, and why not? There’s plenty around. We were lucky enough

to have one of the best trout openings we have had in years, and this month did not disappoint, with trout numbers remaining good and the streams looking healthy from the frequent rains in our hills. The Strzelecki streams did not disappoint once again, with Traralgon Creek, the

Morwell River and Middle Creek all producing good numbers of modest sized brown trout to 30cm in length. The fish did seem to go better a few days after a shower or rain, and this was the time when anglers were catching up to a dozen in a session. When the creeks were allowed to go crystal clear, the

Matt Reid caught this 44cm trout trolling the bank edges of Blue Rock with Tassie Devils.

trout were a little harder to catch and you had to be a bit sneakier to not spook them. The best lures were Mapso spinners, however small soft plastics would work well too. Blue Rock fished very well, and with the lake rising fast due to consistent rain, the fish are around the edges. In fact, the best fishing has been from flat line trolling Tassie devils around the bank edges or fishing with garden worms off the bank. There’s been some solid trout caught as well, with many of the trout measuring up to 45cm and 99% of them being browns. The bass have started to come on the chew as well, and trout anglers are getting a few bass as by-catch on worms. Over the next month the bass will really come on, especially once we get some hot weather. • For more information, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on 5174 8544. You will get expert advice and great deals on fishing bait and tackle. Tune into Rex Hunt and Lee Rayner’s Off the Hook on 1242 to hear Will’s report on what’s going on in Gippsland!

Young Noah with a beautiful 40cm brown trout caught on garden worms.

Most likely there will be more floods to come BENDIGO

Roger Miles

My predictions for the region have come to fruition over the last couple of weeks. With the catchments saturated, the region’s reservoirs reached high levels again this season. What I didn’t predict was how quick it would happen. RECORD RAINFALL FOR BENDIGO The region has received record-breaking rainfall. Most areas in the Bendigo region have received the most rainfall in September ever recorded. The majority of this rainfall was received during mid-September. This rainfall event produced major inflows and we’ve seen our impoundments rise at a rapid rate. The region has already experienced flooding. The Loddon River has been in major flood levels and the Campaspe River has experienced moderate flooding at this stage. Given the current conditions with our catchment still very saturated and our impoundments at high levels, there’s still a high chance we’ll see more flooding over the next couple of months. 68


LAKE EPPALOCK We’ve seen an amazing amount of water run into Lake Eppalock over the last couple of weeks. In the middle of September, the three impoundments, which are also on the Coliban catchment, reached capacity. The region then received three days of heavy rainfall. The lake’s water level increased from 47% to over 80% capacity in just a few days – an amazing amount of water. Water levels have continued to increase at a steady rate. With more substantial rain forecast in the future, water levels should continue to increase. Water authorities will be trying to manage the water as best as they can. There will continue to be high releases from the lake for flood mitigation over the next few weeks. The water clarity is currently poor due to the major inflows. Water clarity should improve over the next few weeks when the water starts to settle. The poor water clarity has meant the productivity in lure fishing has been slow and will continue to be slow for the next couple of weeks. When the water clarity improves, we’ll again see good fishing at this location. The productivity of the redfin fishing will

The productivity in the redfin fishing will be very good in the local Bendigo impoundments this season. be great this season. We’ll also see the most productive golden perch fishing at this destination in over a decade. So while the fishing is low at the moment, get your gear ready. Before you know it, the lake will start to fire! CAMPASPE RIVER We’ve seen some moderate flooding already down the Campaspe River this season. The flooding has eased, but with more good rainfall forecast, the chance of seeing more flooding down the Campaspe River continues to be very high. Currently, the river’s water clarity is

very poor. The poor water clarity will continue for at least the next month. This is going to mean the productivity of those anglers who are wanting to fish the Campaspe River with lures is going to stay low. Baitfishing is going to be the best option until water clarity improves later in the season. The first location where this will change is below the spillway at Lake Eppalock. If Lake Eppalock reaches capacity – with the current conditions the chances of this happening is high – then a week after the spillway is

running, we’ll start to see some productive fishing at this location. The productive fishing will continue for as long as the water continues to run over the spillway. CAIRN CURRAN What an amazing amount of water – after the heavy rainfall, the lake’s capacity was at 50% one morning and by the next the capacity had risen to 94%. This was with the water authorities releasing 10,000ml overnight! It’s an incredible amount of water in a short time period. Fishing is slow. Those anglers who’ve been fishing

this location have been getting small numbers of redfin casting around the edges of the lake. The numbers of golden perch being caught has been low on lures. Small numbers of golden perch have been caught by anglers baitfishing from the shoreline. In another few weeks when the water temperatures increase, we’ll start to see an improvement in anglers’ catch rates. Water clarity should slowly start to improve again, depending on the inflows. We’re going to see some very productive fishing at this location this season again when the conditions are right look out! LODDON RIVER We’ve seen major flooding in the Loddon River in recent weeks. Water clarity has been poor and the productivity in lure fishing has been low. Baitfishing continues to be the most productive method with the current conditions. With more heavy rainfall forecast, the chances are high that we’ll see more flooding down the Loddon River this season. If this happens, the productivity of fishing will continue to be low. After the peak of these flooding events, when the water clarity settles, anglers can experience some good fishing.

Rainfall set the lakes up to fire this spring CRATER LAKES

Rod Shepherd

The last few months saw a continuation of rainfall with a large, state-wide event occurring in the middle of September. Almost all rivers and lakes that were struggling in recent times with a lack of moisture are now minorly flooded at least. In the short term, the rain has caused havoc, but in the long, nearly all our inland waterways are once again in a healthy position and producing quality fish – ripe for restocking of salmonoids. Lake Purrumbete continues to produce amazing brown trout with many approaching the 12lb mark. Mark Gercovich and his young son from Warrnambool paid a couple of visits just recently to fish from late afternoon onwards, and both

The author with a brace of Elingamite redfin taken on a Damiki Saemi 50 minnow. were rewarded with huge fish taken just on dark. A good friend, Neil Slater, also ventured down from Geelong for a weekend’s fish and although it was quiet for him in the trophy trout department

he witnessed other anglers boat a couple of monsters. The browns are not available in huge numbers, but they’re there. First and last light are the times to target them. From the

edge of the boat channel over to Horan’s Point has been a prime area to work. Cast a variety of offerings towards the weed beds in the shallower water. From Horan’s Point around to the

disused quarry has been an ideal area to troll. Shallow to medium diving lures either cast towards the weed beds or silently trolled very slow under electric power have produced fish. So has casting soft plastics. Slow roll the plastic mid water rather than twitching it off the bottom. Fishing soft plastics on or near the bottom will inevitably invite strikes from small redfin. Some years ago I was invited down to Tasmania to do an article and fish primarily for big bream in the southwestern corner of the state under the expert tuition of local fishing guide Bob McKinley. As many bream waters overlap with trout, I was told I must not, under any circumstances, twitch the soft plastic along the bottom. You need to use a steady retrieve, slow rolling midwater, so as not to spook the trout. Bob was

spot on, and I’ve employed the same technique back here with great success. It’s good to see Lake Tooliorook filling thanks to all the rainfall. The water level now covers the end of the concrete boat ramp and is approximately 8m past the end of the T-shaped jetty. It was already stocked with trout some time ago, but it needs to come up another metre in height, as it’s very weedy and hampers the running of outboard motors. Lake Elingamite’s level has risen to over 40cm depth at the boat ramp. Boats to 3.6m in length, even V hulled boats, can now get out with little trouble as long as the outboard is in shallow drive. I’ve been in regular contact with Fisheries Victoria and have been told that it’s only a matter of time before this majestic lake is once again stocked with salmonoids.

Floods excite stream trout WST/STH GIPPSLAND

Steve Haughton

The first two months of the stream trout season have seen some much needed solid falls of rain across the West and South Gippsland catchments. Many streams and rivers broke their banks or came close to, and the steady rainfall in the last couple of months has meant that stream flows have remained steady. Blue Rock Lake is at 101% too, and didn’t take long to fill up, thanks to the rain and snowmelt from Mt Baw Baw. All this

water should mean plenty of food in the system, so our finned friends won’t go hungry. If you’re hitting the streams, you should expect clear water flowing in the Toorongo, Loch and Tanjil rivers, and in the upper reaches of the Tarago River. The Latrobe River will have a nice tannin colour about it and as you get closer to farmland around the Labertouche area, the Tarago River and upstream of the Bunyip River will also display a nice dark tannin colour. Strong stream flows make fishing difficult using lures, baits and beaded nymphs. When fishing a stream with strong flows, try to think like a trout.

Trout won’t want to be sitting in fast flowing water as they’ll want to conserve energy. Instead they’ll be positioning themselves at the end of rapids where the flow slows down considerably or it eddies, allowing the trout to simply pick off food as it gets funnelled to them. Trout will often be found behind large rocks blocking the stream flow, which gives them protection, or they’ll sit in the backwater close to the bank. Often the backwater along the bank has a cutting or a ledge, which in many cases has aquatic vegetation growing in the water giving protection. Often this cutting is where a trout will wait out flooding events. Spotting trout will be

difficult during this time, so it’s a matter of understanding trout feeding behaviour. Cast a lure or beaded nymph and let the strong flows push the lure into the backwater. This allows you to naturally enter the strike zone. Retrieve the lure slowly – give it enough action to entice a trout out of its comfort zone. The signs are looking promising for the season ahead because of the spring rainfall. The streams throughout this region though aren’t stocked with trout, so it’s important to practice catch and release to ensure future populations of trout can spawn naturally. We should start to see plenty of insect hatchings as the daylight hours get longer and

There have been some good, healthy stream trout about, but they’re hard to find after the spring rain and strong stream flows. the temperature warms up. Bass fishing on Blue Rock will heat up this month too, as the bass start to get more active on the surface. This is always a lot of fun for lure anglers, whether you’re out

on a kayak or boat, or landbased. Feel free to send me a report or photo, particularly if you have any success stories from the start of trout season and email me any questions. Happy fishing!

Action across the board MELBOURNE METRO

Dylan Brennan

As the warmer months of 2016 approach we should see virtually all our local freshwater species on offer. A solid wet winter has filled and replenished many dams, watercourses or creeks nearby. This in turn has already started to provide us with good fishing. Sugarloaf Reservoir in Christmas Hills has seen a few school-sized golden perch caught by anglers casting lures around the rocky southwestern shoreline. I spoke with angler James who caught five fish in his most

recent session using 1/4oz spinnerbaits fitted with small soft plastics and stinger hooks. James said all his fish were 38-42cm and tapped the lure multiple times before hooking up. James also said there were some reasonable sized redfin following the lure to the bank at times. On the Mornington Peninsula, Devilbend Reservoir has been somewhat patchy. There have been a lot of frustrated anglers heading home with no luck, while others have been passing on reports of success. Devilbend is a fickle system in which dangling doesn’t pay off in most instances. I still hear from many people who fish

too big a hook and simply cast into the thick weed. For success in this lake you have to find the small clear pockets and gaps in the weed, and coax the fish into them. Fishing lightly weighted baits under small sensitive floats is one way to go. Some anglers have been catching trout and redfin using weedless soft plastics, so there’s more than one way to catch a fish. Some of the suburban lakes have been producing trout for local anglers lately. Karkarook Park in Moorabbin is one such location, where there have been rainbow trout from the last school holiday stocking on the chew. Most of the trout caught

here have been taken on PowerBait or maggots, with the occasional fish taking worms or small freshwater yabbies. Nine year old angler Mitchell Lette tried his luck down at Karkarook recently where he landed four nice rainbow trout. Mitchell caught all his fish on PowerBait in pink – good work, Mitchell! • For up to date fishing information, contact the guys at Compleat Angler in Dandenong on 9794 9397 or drop in and see us at 241-243 Princes Hwy, Dandenong, we are open 7 days a week. For our other latest fishing reports and to download information sheets, go to www

Young gun Mitchell Lette with one of his Karkarook rainbows. Photo courtesy of Mitchell Lette. NOVEMBER 2016


Spring into prime time state still need a lot of water to bring them back to 2010 conditions. Our river systems have had a very good flush out, which is great news. With the abundant amount of food that’s been flooded out around all the lake margins, which haven’t been full for years, there’ll be a smorgasbord for the foraging trout. They’ll put on plenty of weight over the coming months.


Shane Stevens

We’ve had a big start to spring fishing in the Ballarat district. Rain continues to fall and most of our lakes and fisheries are full to overflowing. This hasn’t happened since late 2010. Hopefully the rain continues, as some of the waters in the western district and west of

Cracking Lake Wendouree brown trout caught by Jakey Young under guidance from Dad Ben. Photo courtesy of Ben Young

A lot of our waterways will be slightly discoloured due to the amount of water that flushed into them. This will not stop the trout from feeding. Big trout will move from their comfort zone in deeper water into the shallows because of the food supply, so it’s time to get out there and make the most of this opportunity. This weather pattern doesn’t happen every year, so like the old saying, ‘make hay while the sun shines’. Lake Wendouree is the top lake in the district at the moment with excellent catches of both rainbow and brown trout being caught. Flies, baits, lures and plastics are all catching fish at the moment. The lake is over full and a big win for anglers wishing to fish Wendouree at the moment. Weed harvesters have been able to get in very close to the shoreline, which means we have nearly 6km of fishable shore. Ben Young has had his boys out trolling Nories B74 lures and recorded excellent catches. The best was a cracking 58cm brown trout caught by young Jakey – probably one of the best conditioned brown trout you would see caught and released from Wendouree.


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Jayden White caught this lovely brown trout from Newlyn Reservoir casting a Pacey’s perch pattern Bullet lure. Photo courtesy of Jayden White Flyfishers have started to catch quality fish. Luke Barby loch-style flyfished out of a boat and snagged some magnificent browns stripping wet fly patterns, Killer pattern an Olive Magoo. Shane Jeffrey has also been rewarded flyfishing from the shore. He caught some awesome browns as well – up to 5lb – once again stripping the Olive Magoo fly pattern. Over the next few months, flyfishing in Wendouree should really fire up with the much anticipated mayfly hatches. Every year they seem to be increasing, since the lake went dry a few years ago. Hopefully this year Lake Wendouree reverts back to its glory days of Victoria’s premier mayfly fishery. Damien Keirl and his young daughter Lesinda have been spending quality time fishing mudeyes suspended under bubble floats around Lake Wendouree shorelines. They’ve had excellent results nailing some lovely brown trout. The baitfishing will only get better over the coming months as the trout turn the feeding patterns towards mudeyes that live in the weeds in Lake Wendouree. Morning, noon and night are the most productive times to fish bait on Wendouree, especially on overcast days when trout really come on the chew. Newlyn Reservoir is full and overflowing with water slightly discoloured. This has not deterred the hungry trout that are gorging themselves on worms and grubs that were flooded out of the ground. Jayden white has nailed some lovely trout casting the pacey’s perch pattern Bullet Lures up to 3lb. Other reports are of anglers catching quality browns up to 5lb casting lures. Over the next few months the sky’s the limit for Newlyn Reservoir, whether you flyfish, cast lures or fish bait. Hepburn Lagoon is the mystery bag amongst our fisheries in the district, as the water level got very low. We don’t know how many fish

survived over the summer period. Now like other waters full and overflowing, Heppy has been restocked with brown and rainbow trout, which are only small. We’re relying on the residents that survived from last year and previous years – that’s where the mystery comes into play. Heppy looks absolutely magnificent with the water being crystal clear and full of food. Hopefully those resident fish come in around the shallow margins to feed on abundant stick caddis, nymphs, snails and mudeyes. Hepburn Lagoon is a shorebased fishery with the main access points being on the Eastern, Western and Northern shorelines. The best methods to use are baitfishing with mudeyes under floats and a bunch of garden worms fished on a running sinker rig, or flyfishing nymphs, Tom Jones, Mayfly, Woolly Buggers, Mrs Simpson, Craig’s Night Times and Muddler Minnow fly patterns. For anglers fishing lures, spoons and wobblers are excellent at this time of the year. Tullaroop Reservoir is overflowing, with kilometres of grass filled shorelines and fish in amongst the grass,

rushes and bushes feeding on everything that moves. Tullaroop this spring could produce some awesome fishing as the big browns and rainbows come into the shallows to feed. The water is discoloured at the moment, but this won’t stop feeding fish. Anglers casting flies, lures and fishing baits could catch some monsters in the coming months. Moorabool Reservoir is probably the only reservoir around Ballarat that’s not full. I’m sure over the coming months it will fill. After spending plenty of time fishing out there over the winter months, the water has risen over grassy bays and shorelines, and some of the grass is up to 3ft high, which means food, food and more food. Trout will cruise in amongst these flooded shorelines eating grubs and worms – they’ll be hard to catch, with the humble old garden worm being the best bait to use. This season in Ballarat brings exciting times to anglers able to fish lots of waters that are full and stocked by Fisheries – something that hasn’t happened for a few years now.

Luke Barby with an awesome Lake Wendouree brown trout caught loch-style flyfishing. Photo courtesy of Luke Barby

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Essential summer guide to polarized sunglasses VFM

David Glennie

Every fisher knows that polarized sunglasses are the best choice to protect your eyes, eliminate glare, sight fish and help you pick out reefs and weed beds in the water. To help you select the best polarized sunglasses, here’s an explanation of glare, polarized light, the components that go into sunglasses and the different value for money across the vast price range that confronts you in front

of a sunglasses display. Let’s start with a quick lesson on light and glare. Imagine you’re in an outdoor car park on a sunny day. As you look into an area of the car park with no vehicles, your eyes will feel mild discomfort at the light from the bright sunlight. As you turn towards a section of the park with cars, you’ll see the annoying glare as the sunlight reflects from windscreens and polished surfaces of the parked cars. This reflected glare is 6-8 times stronger and more uncomfortable than the surrounding ambient

light and is described as polarized glare. Now put yourself on the water. The water surface is like being surrounded by hundreds of windscreens, attacked by glare – your eyes will be screaming for help. The perfect solution is a lens tinted to reduce the surrounding light coupled with a polarized filter to remove the glare. With the sunlight reduced and glare removed, your eyes will be more comfortable. With the glare-free water surface, you’ll be able to see through the surface and pick out fish and bottom structure. A non-polarized lens will only have the dark colour to reduce the light levels reaching your eye. They lack the ability to cut the stronger glare. CHOOSING A PAIR Now that you’ve decided to purchase polarized sunnies, which is the best pair? Many brands, varied prices, different lens colours and materials and frame design can make your choice bewildering, so here are some tools to make a great sunglass selection. The most important component of your sunglasses is the lenses, as

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Top: This is a glare-filled environment without polarized lens protection. Above: Polarized lenses reduce the glare. the main reason of wearing sunglasses is to protect your eyes, remove glare and have you seeing comfortably. As mentioned earlier, the colour of the lens reduces the surrounding light. Therefore by extension, the darker the lens colour the greater the light reduction. As you look over a sunglasses display, you’ll see that the majority of models will have a grey or brown lens colour that will reduce the light levels by around 80%, which will perform an excellent job in full sun conditions. The internal polarizing filter will not be visible on the display, but its benefits will be obvious once you look through the lens. When choosing your sunnies, try on a grey lens and then a brown lens, preferably in sunlight, to experience the difference in tint colour. The brown lens has a higher amount of yellow in the tint colour, which will provide an element of lift in your vision and you might feel that colours appear brighter. This increase in contrast can certainly help in picking out a trout in a stream or such details, but this visual sensation is not comfortable for everyone. By contrast, the grey lens will cool and soothe the light and is generally the lens choice of the harsher on-water environment, where the glare surrounds us. By trying on both the

grey and brown lens in quick succession you’ll be able to get a reaction on what you feel most comfortable looking through and choose what suits best. Some companies will brand their brown lens copper or rose or similar. If it looks brown to you, then it’s brown for the purpose of this discussion regardless of the marketing spin from the manufacturer. There may be some mid range tints on display with light reduction of around 50%, while a traditional lens has a reduction around 80%.

In these models the polarized filter will still remove the glare, but the lighter lens will allow more light to reach the eye than the full tint lenses. These sunglasses are ideal in cloudy conditions or early and late in the day where the glare still exists on the water but the surrounding light levels are relatively low. Sight fishing in these lighting environments is ideally suited to these lenses, but you might not find them dark enough in full sun. If you can stretch the budget, purchase a mid tint model

Whether for bait or the table, you’ll catch more squid by seeing the best ground courtesy of your polarizing sunglasses.

and a second pair fitted with a full sun tint, to have you covered for all situations. Another way to cover multiple sunlight conditions is a polarized photochromatic lens. A photochromatic lens is lighter in colour, around 40-60% light reduction when not exposed to bright sunlight, and then darkens automatically in proportion to the amount of sunlight in the environment. Theses lenses are certainly flexible to the wearer, however the Achilles heel of the photochromatic lens is their ability to fully darken if your boat cabin or car roof and windscreen filter the sunlight that activates the lens. This causes the lens to not darken to its full potential

TO CHOOSE THE BEST POLARIZED SUNGLASSES • Check that the lenses are polarized; don’t assume they are. • Ask yourself, do I prefer the scratch resistant glass lens or a lighter acrylic type? • Brown tint and grey tint offer different visual properties. Choose what works for you. • Pick a frame with a comfortable fit and think, do I look hot? • Ask about the speed of repairs and warranty claims. • Stretch your budget as far as you can. Better quality sunglasses fit better for longer, and the more scratch resistant lenses will be more durable. ONCE YOU ARE THE PROUD OWNER OF YOUR WELL CHOSEN SUNNIES • Always keep them in a protective hard case – those cloth bags give minimal protection! • Before you wipe the lenses, a rinse under cool fresh water will remove abrasive sand, salt dust and grit. This will extend the life of your lenses enormously After rinsing, use a lens cleaning spray and dry with a soft cloth or clean tissue.

The author with a cracker snapper catch. He’s got his polarized sunnies on. when behind glass, and so its performance in bright sun will be compromised. If one product could do everything, then we would only have one rod and reel combination, one lure and one bait variety. While this is a noble aim, there’ll be some compromise in performance. As well as looking at lens tints, lens materials are also an important consideration when choosing your new sunwear. There are three main materials in the quality sunglass ranges, with the choice of crown glass, acrylic

and polycarbonate lenses. Lower priced sunglasses will generally use a triacetate cellulose lens. Most sunglass manufacturers will claim a glass lens to be superior in clarity to its acrylic and polycarbonate cousins. While this is technically correct, any difference is almost impossible to detect with the naked eye. More important in your purchasing decision is the significantly higher scratch resistancy of the glass when compared to other choices. If you’re a bit careless, not

so good at using a case or getting abrasive sand or salt on the lens then the scratch resistant glass is a great choice for you. Glass lenses are about twice the weight of acrylic or polycarbonate, so consider the comfort factor as you try different pairs in store. Glass lenses are a more brittle material and somewhat unforgiving if dropped on a hard surface where chipping or breaking can result. Never wear your glass lens sunglasses, or any To page 74

The SLICELENS from TONIC EYEWEAR is the most technically advance polarised lens in the world. Featuring the latest Japanese glass technology the SLICELENS provides totally distortion free vision with precise depth and distance as well as unparalleled clarity. Try them on at your local retailer and discover the TONIC EYEWEAR difference for your self

Wearing your polarized sunglasses will allow you to pick out the hotspots between weed beds and other structure to increase your catch rates. NOVEMBER 2016


From page 73

other sunglass for that matter, unless they’re safety rated when working with power tools or machinery. A piece of broken glass embedded in your eye will spoil your day in a big way! A sunglass fitted with acrylic resin lenses, usually a material called CR-39, will result in a lighter and more comfortable wearing experience. CR-39 has excellent optical properties. Most prescription lenses are made from CR-39, and I am sure that the sunglass industry borrows technology on manufacturing techniques and scratch resistant coatings from the larger and better-resourced prescription industry. You’ll find acrylic lenses are half the weight of their glass counterparts and near impossible to break in normal recreational wear. They will however require more care as they don’t have the same resistance to scratching as a glass lens. Take care of the way that you put them down, use a good case and rinse abrasive materials from the lens surface with cool water before wiping or rubbing and you’ll get long life from a pair of CR-39 lenses.

Polarizing sunglasses will cut the glare from the water surface and allow you to pick out sand banks, weed beds and reefs. Look out King George whiting! and a more secure fit in the sunglass frame. Triacetate cellulose lenses have the lowest resistance to scratching of the materials, and are a consumable that will be replaced more frequently. There are some models with a variety of coloured mirror coatings. These coatings reflect light away

better quality hinges and fitted with lenses made from CR-39 or polycarbonate. The grylamid frames will fit more comfortably for an extended period of time, rarely working loose. The only maintenance required is a trip back to your point of purchase to have the screws tightened occasionally. The lifespan of these will be determined by your care of the lens surface and frame. Normal usage should give you several years of great wear. For a glass lens, you’ll be spending around $270-$300. The frames will be similar to the grylamid, but the grinding and polishing of the glass lens pushes the price to a higher point. Several suppliers will make the same model frame and fit some with glass lenses and others with an acrylic material in a variety

European fashion designers use polarized lenses, so check to ensure that your stunning fashion sunglasses have polarized lenses fitted. For those who wear spectacles to assist their vision, don’t despair – your prescription can be produced in polarizing materials. Whether you need correction for distance only, or wear a bifocal or multifocal lens, clear vision combined with glare reduction is available and can be fitted to most frames. Spectacle lens design for wrap sunnies is more complicated than conventional spectacles, so for the best result please seek the advice of an expert. Ask to see a qualified optical dispenser before you start looking at the various styles on display, so that you get the right advice on lens thickness, prescription suitability to each

injection molded plastic or low-grade metal frame fitted with a triacetate cellulose lens and its assosiated shortcomings. Frames at this price point cannot be altered in shape for a personalized comfort fit, and the hinges tend to throw screws at the most inconvenient time. The frames will be prone

With long days on the water trolling for tuna, your eyes will be protected and relaxed behind polarized sunnies.

Polarizing sunglasses are not just great on the water, but the best driving sunglasses. Can you see the cyclist past the glare? Polycarbonate lenses also offer a lighter weight option than the glass models and a good level of impact resistance. If you choose a polycarbonate lens you’ll need to pay stricter attention to the scratch avoidance. Polycarbonate is the softest surface of the three main materials. Most polarized sunglasses with a regular price of $100 or less will be fitted with a triacetate cellulose lens. The construction of these lenses is more like a foil and frequently less than 1mm thick, where traditional lenses are around 2mm in thickness. Being so thin, they’ll flex easily and spring out of the frame with light to moderate pressure. Thicker lenses are much more stable under pressure 74


from the front surface of the lens rather than allow it to pass through. This works with the lens tint to reduce the amount of light reaching your eye. Premium polarized lenses will have a reflection-free coating on the rear surface of the lens to reduce bounce-back glare from any ambient light that reaches the back lens surface. The reduced reflection makes you visually less aware of the lens in front of your eye and you just feel the glare reducing benefits of the tint and polarizing filter. PRICE There’s a huge range of prices for polarizing sunglasses. Let’s look at why the prices vary and what you get for your dollar. Sunglasses priced under $100 will consist of an

to stretching out of shape, which will make them fit loosely and slip down your nose. You’ll still enjoy the benefits of polarizing lenses, at a lower price, but will need a more regular replacement purchase than higher priced sunglasses with higher construction integrity. Priced from $180$220, we’re moving into stronger frames, usually made of grylamid with

of lens and coating colours so that you can make your perfect choice of frame, lens material and tint. Once the price rises over $300, you’ll get similar lenses with above average frames – perhaps a metal frame with titanium components for light weight and strength, or a beautiful European made acetate plastic frame from a fashion icon. Only a small percentage of sunglasses from

Choose a sunglass retailer who stocks a range of brands and models so that you can select the perfect frame and lens combination for your needs.

frame’s shape and size, and the relationship between the prescription and curvature of the lens. Avoid knock-off sunglasses that are cheap copies of quality sunglasses. As well as super low quality, I have great concerns of the protection levels of the lenses fitted to them. If the people that make them don’t care about ripping off Gucci, Ray-Ban or Oakley, then they don’t give a stuff about protecting your precious eyes. Every sunglasses model sold in Australia has been tested by Australian Standards to ensure it’s protecting your eyes correctly. Never buy or wear sunglasses that weren’t purchased with a swing tag stating that it exceeds Australian Standard AS/NZS 1067 2003. Enjoy wearing your new sunglasses. For any queries, call David Glennie at Karingal Optical on 03 9789 4811. David Glennie has a Diploma of Optical Dispensing and has managed optometry practices for over 30 years. Fishing and diving in his spare time, he combines his technical lens knowledge with the requirements of long hours on the water.


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Costa’s 580 lens has some of the best light transmission technology in the world. The main blue spectrum is enhanced, the green is enhanced at its peak sensitivity, and the red is also enhanced. Working together, this allows anglers to see more and ultimately catch more. One of the most versatile lenses is the standard grey 580 lens, which maintains natural contrast and saturation through most everyday conditions. It’s great for a mix of fishing and everyday life. The copper lens enhances contrast while cutting glare from the water – perfect for the variable light conditions often encountered in estuary and freshwater fishing. It enhances colours and delivers high contrast, making it easier to pick out fishy targets. You can also get a Blue Mirror lens (built on a grey base lens) and Green and Silver (both built on a copper base). In low light conditions, there’s the Sunrise Lens. It transmits 27% of available light and provides excellent contrast at times where you wouldn’t normally wear sunnies. There are more than 60 frames in the Costa range, and you can find them at any store that stocks Rapala gear.

Designed for top end work, the new Apex sunglasses from Mako are really something new. What separates these sunnies from the pack is their innovative new gradient colour lenses. They provide darker shading on top where you need it most, and the lighter shades below give clarity for close-up work. Available in light polycarbonate or tough, crown glass distortion-free lenses in grey or rose tint, Apex shows Mako’s top-notch technology at its best. Made from tough warpresistant nylon composite, the Mako’s sleek, matte black frames are fashionable and are designed for all outdoor situations. It features less of a wrap than Mako’s new Ronin model, but will still sit close to your face, reducing side light. It also has rubber on the nose pads and arm inserts to keep them from slipping off. Mako has the largest array of polarised lens choices in Australia. Lightweight TR-90 construction make Makos some of the most comfortable sunglasses you will wear. Price: RRP $299 (glass lenses)

Designed for comfort and fit, the Ronin from MakoMY provides extensive coverage on bright, glary days on the water. The eight-base frame curves around your eyes forCY full sun protection, preventing glare from entering aroundCMY the sides of the frame. These sunglasses deliver superior clarity with their decentred, K distortion-free crown glass lens in copper, brown or rose. They are matched to either a silver, blue or flash mirror coating lens with excellent scratch resistance. Combined with the classically stylish matte black frame, with an ultra-tough pin hinge, the Ronin is everything you’d expect from Mako sunglasses. The Ronin will be available in a choice of High Definition glass lenses suitable for a wide range of fishing and outdoor pursuits. Mako’s High Definition filter removes some yellow and orange wavelengths of light that cause blurring, especially at distance. This results in a clearer view at a greater distance than what is possible with the naked eye. Price: RRP $299 (glass lenses)







Do you find it hard to find sunnies that fit you? When you head into a store to try on eyewear, do you find the lenses feel too small to give you the protection you need, or the frames are so tight they cause you headaches? Spotters have crafted a solution for you – eyewear that delivers a generous fit with a classic style. The Grit from Spotters boasts classic styling with slim temples that slide on under your headwear, and big lenses for ultimate protection. These sunglasses have been sculpted with innovative design features to deliver the perfect life-size fit. The geometrical lens shape fuses sophistication with aerodynamic lines, giving incredible lens depth and protection. The temple width has been whittled away to slide on under your headwear and stay balanced. The subtle curve of the temples provides the perfect amount of grip, while state-of-the-art frame materials give you unmatched flexibility and comfort. 76





The award-winning Spotters Rebel take you seamlessly from penetrating the glare off huge swells offshore, to a BBQ with your mates. These sunglasses combine ultimate visual clarity with comfort and classic style. The design for Rebel took its inspiration from the iconic movie star styling of the 50s. Beautiful retro styling incorporates an embracing lens curve to gently wrap your face and deliver ultimate glare protection. The lines of the frame have been selectively moulded to incorporate classic fluid elements – eliminating flat and boring. Spotters has developed a slim temple design with a sweeping curve to keep your eyewear secure, and removed any barrier to sliding these sunglasses on quickly and effortlessly. Rebel’s finishing touch is the bold temple branding. Frame finishes are available in gloss black, matt black or crystal brown. As seen here in the ice blue mirror lens, Rebel will deliver high performance polarised vision all day, every day.









Tonic Eyewear, the brainchild of eyewear expert Doug Phillips, is going from strength to strength. “You really have to try on a pair of Tonics to see what you’re missing,” Doug explained. “When looking through them you’ll see the colour saturation, reds, blues and greens more vibrantly due to our four and three colour polarising filter systems.” Another key feature is the applied anti-reflective back surface coating that absorbs reflective glare, stopping it entering the eye. There’s also a decentred lens, giving you incredibly accurate depth and distance perception, which is essential while casting. “The clarity alone is overwhelming,” Doug said. “Then you have some of our specialised lenses like Neon which is incredibly sharp visually, and our photochromic copper, photochromic grey and our mirrored lenses. Anyone can do a mirror, but it’s what’s behind the mirror that counts!” Doug Phillips, who used to design Spotters sunglasses, has launched several new models in the past 12 months, including the Mo, Jo and Rise. Check out the Tonic website for more info. Price: SRP $279

What’s New FISHING



Remora Lures are a new brand of Aussie gamefishing lures, created by Jason Olivey. He has designed the heads so that they can be customised with photos or logos. Jason has fished for marlin and tuna up and down the coast for years, and a few years ago he created the first lures in the Remora range. He made a few samples for a shop, and then the orders started coming in. “When I make the lures I start with a nice piece of timber and carve the shapes from that,” he explained. “There are secrets in lure making, like magicians’ tricks! I run different styles of heads and hook rigs to see what works best. You cut the tail to see how it swims better, use different weights and different anglers on the face until you get the result you’re after.” For more info and pics, including custom heads with photos inside them, look up Remora Lures on Facebook.



The new Hy-Braid from Zerek is a translucent braid that is visible outside the water and has a decreased visibility beneath the surface of the water. Hi-Braid is a unique hybrid hyperfill fibre line that has all the advantages of a traditional fused braided line without the disadvantages. The unique build of Hy-Braid allows for incredible casting distance and durability, and it has a longevity that is unsurpassed. Additionally, and most importantly, HyBraid is easy to tie knots with and retains excellent line strength after knot tying. Currently available in 15m and 300m spools, Zerek Hy-Braid is a truly unique braided offering unlike anything else on the market. Keep an eye out for it at your favourite tackle store, or for the latest news and pics you can like Wilson Fishing on Facebook.



ZMan 4” Turbo CrawZ are a deadly jig, ChatterBait or spinnerbait trailer, as well as a versatile soft plastic presentation in their own right. Their specially designed Turbo ClawZ thump at even the slightest rod movement or reel crank and the buoyant, 10X Tough ElaZtech material allows the claws to rise up off the bottom in a natural defensive posture that attracts fish and triggers strikes. This buoyancy also allows the Turbo CrawZ to be rigged weedless on a ChinlockZ hook and buzzed across the surface, weighted on a ChinlockZ SWS or SnakelockZ jighead for fishing heavy cover, or rigged on a HeadlockZ jighead for fishing open water. The realistic craw profile will appeal to a wide range of freshwater species, while also attracting the attention of a myriad of saltwater species, offering anglers a profile change when the bite is tough. Turbo CrawZ come in a pack of six in a range of colours. Price: SRP $9.95





Synonymous with the offshore fishing game, Williamson embarks on a new inclusion into the game fishing market, introducing the companies Soft Game Tremor. Now Williamson are looking to extend the soft vibe category into the deep blue, with their brand oversized soft plastic vibration style bait suitable for trolling for finicky pelagic species such as southern bluefin tuna. Measuring 160mm and weighing a hefty 165g, the Williamson Soft Game Tremor is created with a durable, yet pliable soft plastic body, encasing a full-wire body construction connecting the inline VMC single hooks to the tow point, giving you the confidence to fish this bait hard. Able to be trolled at up to 12knots, the Soft Game Tremor opens up a new category for blue water fisherman looking for that edge when the fishing gets tough. Available in four great colours, next time you’re heading offshore why not try something different, like the new Williamson Soft Game Tremor.


Technology combines with stylish good looks and outstanding value in the new Emeraldas MX. Designed for the Eging fisherman who wants it all, the newest reel to bare the famous Emeraldas name and styling, carries the same pedigree and performance of its predecessors to once again remain the choice of Egi enthusiasts. Available in single handle and double handle models, and loaded with innovative technologies including Real Four, Digigear II, Mag Seal, Air Rotor and ABS II, the Emeraldas MX 2508 PE has the features and performance to rival expensive hiend reels, yet comes with a price that will excite, and looks that will entice. Features include: Real Four; Zaion body and body cover; Digigear II; Mag Seal; Engine Plate; Air Rotor; ABS II; Twistbuster II; Airbail; waterproof UTD and CRBB. There are two models, the MX 2508PE and MX 2508PE-DH, both with a gear ratio of 4.8 (72cm), 6+1 BB, 7kg drag and a spool capacity of PE 0.6-190m/0.8-150m.







Japanese company Valley Hill has created a range of squid jigs called Squid Seekers, designed specifically for anglers targeting squid in deeper water. To achieve this, Valley Hill has created a clever design that incorporates a heavier, streamlined, integrated head weight which distributes more weight towards the front. This causes the jig to sink much more quickly, while still maintaining a nice, smooth action. It’s no problem to get 20-25m down to where the big squid are, and to keep your jig where you want it to be when the current is running. Squid Seeker jigs have ultra-sharp, double-barb crowns and 3D eyes, and there are currently four models in the range: 23g, 30g, 35g, and 50g. There’s also a wide range of colours, all incorporating UV for maximum visibility and attraction in deeper water.

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What’s New FISHING






Every lure fisher likes to pimp their lures, whether it be a new, innovative paint scheme or a touch of extra weight or flash for added fish-catching appeal. Atomic has answered the call, combining under one banner a range of products designed to make your lure stand out from the crowd. A toolbox for your tackle box, Trick Bitz is everything you need for every situation. Atomic’s range of eye-catching paints and UV dips now allow you to customise your hardbodies like never before, while the addition of sticky weight and holographic tape enable you to tailor the buoyancy and flash of your favourite hard bait. Your options don’t end there, with a range of powder coat paints, slide in rattles, and adhesive eyes allowing you to take your jigheads from dull and boring to bold and striking. The potential of these products is limited only by your imagination.



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The runner-up for the Best Soft Lure at the AFTA Tackle Trade Show, the Halco Madeyes 7” Paddle Prawn, is constructed with Madeye’s signature Rubber Stretch Technology. The super-stretchy compound enables the Paddle Prawn to withstand repeated strikes, making this 7” soft plastic lure ideal for species such as snapper, kingfish, amberjack and other demersal species. This new lure is the bigger brother of the 3” and 5” Paddle Prawns, and its thin, lightweight yet durable tail is buoyant and sends irresistible vibrations through the water when jigged or in a current. The legs and feelers add to the natural appeal, making the Paddle Prawn look incredibly lifelike in the water. Halco recommends pairing the 7” Paddle Prawn with a Madeye Octoskirt and Halco’s Catch Scent for maximum attraction. For more information on this and other models in the Madeyes range, head on over to the Halco website. Price: SRP $12.95






Designed from the award-winning lineage of 13 Fishing’s Concept family of reels, the A3 is everything desired in a big low profile, cranked up a few notches. Power is paramount to the new A3 design, and it all starts with the guts of this beast. Cut with Japanese Hamai precision, the new H.A.M gears are hardened brass that is substantially stronger and thicker than any other reel in its class. There’s over 30lb of fish-stopping power in the Bull Drag System, putting the brakes on the hardest fighting fish with silky smooth precision and ease. Key features include: Ocean Armor 2 Saltwater Protection Process, Dead Stop anti-reverse system, concept cork knobs and power handle, Beetle Wing rapid access side plate, Trick Shop compatible, HD aluminium frame and gear side plate; Airfoil carbon palm side plate, Arrowhead line guide system, and 1-year warranty. Price: SRP $359

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River2Sea has created a new brand of soft plastic lures called Chasebaits, and one of the most interesting models in the new series is called the Dagger Bait. Creator Grainger Mayfield got the design concept from a knife. The lure has a thicker body like the handle of a knife, and a very thin, flat, serrated tail like a knife blade. “I just looked at my prawn knife one day and thought, ‘that would make a great lure’,” he said. “It looks just like a fleeing baitfish, with a left-right darting action and a good tail whip, and it’s great for trevally and tuna.” Like all Chasebaits, the Dagger Bait is made from a very soft and supple PVC plastic for maximum action. And, in spite of how soft it feels, it’s stronger that you’d expect. There are three other models in the range – the Curly Bait (one of the only ribbed curltails on the market), Paddle Bait and Fork Bait. All have injected salt and scent, plus eyes for added attraction. Price: SRP $11.95



Storm’s range of hard and soft baits has come a long way in the previous few years. Their R.I.P series is particularly popular with barramundi and cod anglers all over the country. Now, Storm is releasing their newest product, developed for rigging their R.I.P series baits and any other large profile soft bait. The R.I.P Rigger consists of a weighted, plastic encased head with multiple tow points, featuring a large rigging screw to secure it to your plastic. Underneath swing two VMC trebles rigged on stainless, multi-strand wire. The two trebles are staggered, so anglers can pin them into the body of their preferred soft plastic. The head has two tow points. The position closest to the nose of the lure allows for more body roll and tail swing action, while the position on the top of the head allows the lure to track deeper, with a tighter body roll. Available in four different colours to suit any colour of soft plastic body.



Techniice Australia is well known for their quality iceboxes and fridge freezers. What some people may not know is that they also sell a range of well-priced, quality camping products, and one of those is the Jungle Reef double self-inflating mattress. With a 6cm PVC base and soft TPU-coated fabric upper that self inflates through a dual nozzle system, it is a comfortable and durable option for the weekend warrior or a serious camper. Weighing in at only 4.5kg, it rolls up into a compact bundle using heavy duty straps, so it only requires minimal space to pack. Starting from $59 plus shipping, the Jungle Reef double mattress also includes two inflatable pillows. For more information on this and other products in the Techniice range, check out the Techniice website. Price: from $59

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What’s New FISHING







Shimano’s Nasci FB has many features not normally seen in a reel at this price point. Its cold forged Hagane gears offer an improved mesh transition, better durability, and much greater strength. When fighting XOS fish, these reels not only have the cranking power, but will retain the smooth rotation of an unloaded reel. Features include X-Ship (bearing-supported pinion gear for maximum cranking power and torque), G-Free Body (compact with a lower centre of gravity) and Core Protect (water repellent treatment on the line roller and clutch roller). The Nasci’s body design allows one half of the side plate to sit within the opposing side plate, making water entry even harder, and additional seals have been added as well. There are four BBs and one roller bearing, and gear ratios of 5.0:1 and 6.2:1 depending on the model. The 1000 size packs 3kg of drag, the 2500 and 3000 compact size offer 9kg, and the 4000 and 5000XG compact model can handle 11kg.

Anglers who like tangling with big brawlers should check out the new Penn Slammer III. These new reels are built for heavy-duty fishing. Slammers already have a reputation for being tough, and are trusted by charter captains all over the world. The III features a new IPX6 sealed system, which keeps water out of the gear box and drag system, so these reels will stand up well to constant use. The updated Slammer drag system now uses Penn’s proprietary Dura-Drag material and 6+1 ball bearings, making it super smooth and comfortable to use. There’s eight models in the range, so regardless of what you like to do battle with, there’s options for chasing big fish across the board.




The Digital Snapper is the newest Samaki Australian shirt design. The snapper’s sleek, chromed up, metallic appearance means business! Chasing down the Samaki Boom Bait Rattle Snake, this fish is aggressive and determined, never taking his eye off the prize. In the background, a white, carbon fibre chest detail blends into deeper, darker carbon as it weaves and wraps around the body. The lightweight fabric is perfect for all outdoor elements, and is certified UPF 50+. The soft touch 100% polyester material is comfortable on the body, and has the added benefit of being breathable, keeping you cool and dry. Samaki designs are brought to you by Australian anglers who love to chase and design Australian species. Digital Snapper shirts are available in adult, youth and kids’ sizes, allowing the whole family to get in on the action. Price: SRP $59.95 (adults), $49.95 (kids)



The Jumbo Cicada, distributed in Australia by EJ Todd, is the largest profile cicada available from Japanese lure maker Tiemco. The new Jumbo features a 70mm, 13g floating body with a loud single knocker ball bearing, which creates a deep, fish-calling sound. Like its smaller brother the Soft Shell Cicada, the Jumbo Cicada has soft folding wings that give it an easy and natural walking action. This big lure is set to be a big hit with anglers targeting big bass and Murray cod. The Tiemco Jumbo Cicada is available now in eight natural colours. And there’s another new release that fans of the original Soft Shell Cicada will like – three new black patterns in the Soft Shell range, which create a great silhouette. For more information check out the EJ Todd website, or like them on Facebook. Price: SRP $28



BuzzlockZ feature a clear, 4-bladed buzz blade that creates water movement, noise and a bubble trail that attracts predators and triggers brutal strikes. They come with a ChinlockZ SWS jighead to lock your soft plastic in place and keel the presentation when retrieved. The ChinlockZ SWS is attached via a stainless steel twist lock system, enabling you to quickly and easily switch blade or hook sizes as required, or attach the BuzzlockZ blade to other lures such as metal slugs or stickbaits. BuzzlockZ are available in small, medium and large blade sizes, ranging across hook sizes from 2/0 to 8/0. The small size comes in a pack of two, and the medium and large sizes come in a pack of one. Whether it’s bass, cod and saratoga in the fresh, mangrove jack and barra in the creeks, or tailor, salmon, trevally and other pelagic species in the salt, there’s a BuzzlockZ to fire them up! Price: SRP $8.95

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The name Maikuro, from the Japanese word meaning micro, is a new series of nano graphite technology rods. These rods have a sleek, modern design with a matt black finish, white, silver and black trims, and stylish butt configurations incorporating the new Sea Guide carbon hooded reel seat. The butt design is a combination of cork and extra hard EVA, selected for the best transmission of bites. Thanks to the highly responsive graphite blanks, this series is best suited to finesse lure-casting situations. There are rods that can be used for light estuary species, freshwater fish like trout or yellowbelly, and heavier coastal and reef dwellers. There are three models, all 2-piece: MK6625SP (1.98m, 3-5kg line weight, 7-14g lure weight), MK682SP (2.02m, 6-8kg, 10-25g) and MK702SP (2.13m, 2-4kg, 3-8g). The Maikuro range also includes baitcaster, beach, jigging and offshore models. Price: approx. SRP $120



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2.5” Slim SwimZ – The new all rounder

ZMan soft plastics have proven themselves at both a tournament level and an everyday level, and they’re a favourite of many anglers. These high quality soft plastics cover the full spectrum of target species and fishing situations. One of the newer models is the 2.5” Slim SwimZ, and I was introduced to it when doing kayak field testing with Justin Wilmer from TTs (the ZMan distributors). At the start he was towelling me up in the fishing stakes, and was kind enough to pass over the lures he was using – the ZMan 2.5” Slim SwimZ, matched with a TT 1/4oz HeadlockZ Finesse 1/0 jighead. My fishing fortunes changed!

centre alignment doesn’t matter; the tail still wobbles and the lure tracks straight. The Slim SwimZ really shine when you’re targeting fish in less than 5ft of water. Large estuary flats hold an abundance of species, and the size and profile of these lures gives you an each-way bet on what species you may catch. There’s a number of retrieves you can use in this situation. The standard lift-drop will work, but I have found that it tends to take the lure too far off the bottom and out of the strike zone. The best results have come while either slowly rolling and wiggling the lure along the bottom or using a sharp, sideways whip of the rod tip while winding the reel (looking for

a reaction bite, but not moving the plastic too far from the bottom). The fun part has been the mixed bag of species I have caught. So far I have caught tailor, flathead, whiting, flounder and bream on these lures, and I’m sure this list will increase as time goes on. I haven’t yet used the Slim SwimZ in freshwater, but I can see them working well on bass, trout, redfin and golden perch. With a RRP of $10.50 for a packet of eight plastics, and 20 colours to choose from, why not grab a few packets next time you’re in your local tackle store and give them a try? For more info check out www. – Peter Jung

This colour is called suicidal rooster, and the author figured with a name like that he had to give it a try.

What sort of angler wouldn’t like catching whiting on plastics?

We caught a range of species including flathead, bream and whiting. The suppleness of the ElaZtech plastic means as soon as the Slim SwimZ hits the water, the tail starts moving hell for leather and attracting fish. The ElaZtech material is also incredibly durable; there’s every chance you could fish an entire day using one plastic. The simple design also means that that rigging the Slim SwimZ is relatively easy. I say ‘relatively’ because it takes a little bit of time to push any ElaZtech plastic onto a hook (the HeadlockZ jigheads are the best match). However, you don’t need to have the Slim SwimZ absolutely straight. A small kink or off-

TESTED: Valley

Another species coming from less than 5ft of water was this flounder, caught on the 2.5” Slim SwimZ in motor oil colour.

Hill Rocketeer Slicer – it’s a little different maximum angle while the jig sinks (keeping the tines away from structure) and provides a strong side-to-side action during the retrieve, keeping the jig in the right zone for a longer period. CONCLUSION I have been impressed with the Valley Hill jigs that I bought. I limited myself to a few of the 13 colours available and, because the squid fishing in QLD tends to be shallow water, I purchased the 3.0 sized jigs rather

WHAT’S DIFFERENT? The Rocketeer Slicer has two main differences from a standard jig. Firstly, it has a casting system that can be used to gain extra distance. It’s a simple rubber toggle that you place on your line before attaching the jig. Before casting you slip the toggle onto a prong, which comes off the tines of the jig. This elongates the jig, pointing the weight of the jig forward, so you can maximise your casting distance. I have to say that although this is a cool feature, I can’t see me using it;

Four of the author’s favorite colours. The humble squid has become a more and more popular target species throughout Australia. This popularity has provided a plethora of options for anglers when it comes to the number and quality of jigs available. I am a squid jig addict. My collection of squid jigs has grown over the years to the point where I think I could squid fish every day for six months and not use the same jig twice. I made a conscious decision that enough was enough. I didn’t need any more. That was until the AFTA show this year. I was drawn to the Dogtooth Distribution stand (the distributer of Valley Hill in Australia) by their display of squid jigs. The Valley Hill jigs caught my eye; particularly the Rocketeer Slicer, which offers something a little different from a standard jig. SCAN THE QR CODE!

A quality feed of tiger squid caught on the brown shrimp colour Rocketeer Slicer.

The author knew this squid loved the Valley Hill squid jig. It cuddled it all the way in. it casts well enough without it. The feature that excited me the most was the duel tow points on the nose of the jig. The duel tow points provide two key adjustments. Firstly, they provide a change to the angle at which the jig sinks, and

secondly, how it reacts on the retrieve. This versatility really appealed to me. IN THE FIELD Squid can be pretty dumb at times, but some days can be really tough. On those days you really hope the jig you have on may prove to be the difference from the person next to you. With the Slicer, I have to say so far, so good. I have had a few tough outings but I have still managed to bag a few when other anglers haven’t. The duel tow points are a fantastic feature. As most of my squidding has been land-based, I have used the tow point furthest from the nose. It provides

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The author is a big fan of red, foil-based jigs. Not surprising when you catch quality squid like this one. than the 3.5. They have a medium to slow sink rate, and because I use a Mustad Fastach clip it’s very easy to take advantage of the duel tow points. Retailing for around $20, the Rocketeer Slicer fit into the medium price bracket for jigs. They have good quality components and I have had a few squid like them so much that they cuddled them all the way to the shore. Go to au to check out the range and to find your nearest stockist. – Peter Jung

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What’s New FISHING TESTED: $100, Sometimes it’s hard to get a decent angle for writing a reel review. Modern reels are increasingly reliable, feature filled and resilient to the punishment that angling – especially in saltwater – can inflict. And this is to the point where even the most discerning tournament angler can fish very effectively with a $250 reel. The fact is that a $200 reel today is packed with more features than a $500 reel a decade ago. If your retirement plan included buying a heap of top end reels a decade ago and hoping they appreciate in value, you’re going to be as disappointed as the other guy who stocked up on Nokia 3310s. In that light and in the flood of new products hitting the shelves after the 2016 AFTA Trade Show, we thought it’d be a good idea to do a side-by-side comparison between a low, middle and top-end Daiwa reels to see how much difference there actually is. The models supplied by Daiwa were some of their most popular. All 2500-class light spin reels, we unboxed the $600-class 16 Certate 2508PE, the $200-class BG2500 and the sub-$100 Sweepfire 2B. We had a look at the trio on paper first. Secondly we put them to the test in the field. I don’t like writing about anything that I haven’t comprehensively used in the field – and that means more than just having a few casts down in the local waterway. The last Daiwa I reviewed – a Magsealed Zillion – didn’t get any ink until it knocked over 50 threadfin salmon and mulloway in the river over a six-month period. I’m not sure this batch did that much work, but with nearly six months of bream and bass tournaments as well as a reasonable social fishing workload, I put these reels through their paces to get in touch with the strengths and weaknesses of each. One thing I learnt from the process is the importance of gear ratios on threadline reels. I didn’t really put it all together until compiling the table in this article. You see, one of the most recent tests came at the Costa BASS Megabucks at Lake Somerset. I don’t do much tournament bass fishing anymore, but I really enjoy becoming immersed in it over an intense, two day period. That’s exactly what Megabucks is - three sessions of bass fishing for the biggest impoundment bass in Australia at the time of year when they are the fattest and most willing to bite. This year was the year of the metal spoon lure. With the typical spring absence of any noticeable thermocline, the bass ranged from



$200 and $600 Daiwa options compared 16 Certate $600

BG 2500 $200

10-70ft down and a lump of metal was the best way to get a lure in front of the fish. As it happened, a slow roll (technical for slow wind) was the best presentation for the fish that we found. And like most events, after you get dialled in, most outfits on the deck have the same lures on. By a long way, I hooked most of my fish – and all of my big fish – on the Sweepfire 2B – the cheapest reel in the bunch. You see, on a slow roll, the fish can’t tell if there’s two or ten ball bearings in the reel you’re fishing with. All that they can tell is how fast the lure is swimming. On that day, the 5.3:1 ratio of the Sweepfire (recovering 80cm of line per turn of the handle) outfished the $600 16 Certate that retrieved 8cm less line per turn at 4.8:1. The braid was the same and the leaders’ strengths and lengths were the same. Interestingly, this session highlighted the weakness of the $100 reel, and that was the lack of variance in the drag system. Around a fifth of a turn of the drag knob sent the drag from ‘way too light’ to ‘locked up’. For oyster rack fishing, this is awesome, but for nursing

Sweepfire 2B 5.3:1 80 2+0 260 2 PE1/200m Graphite Alloy No $100

BG 2500 5.6:1 84 6+1 265 4 PE1.5/200m Aluminium Alloy No $200

MATCHING RODS Reel Sweepfire 2B BG 2500 16 Certate

For the test period, the author selected some ‘fit for purpose’ spin rods from the tackle room. Rod 2-piece Daiwa Spellbinder SP702ULFS Daiwa Heartland X HL-CX601MLFS-S Nordic Stage Artist 762LX

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Sweepfire 2B $100 1

SPECIFICATIONS Reel Ratio Retrieve/turn (cm) Ball bearings and roller bearings Weight (g) Drag (kg) Capacity (m) Body material Spool material Magsealed Price (approx.)

Scan the QR code to watch the Daiwa 2016 Certate, Daiwa BG and Daiwa Sweepfire 2B review.

16 Certate 4.8:1 72 10+1 245 7 PE1/120m Zaion Alloy Yes $600


a 5lb Australian bass from the depths on a single-hook, it’s heart in mouth stuff. BACK TO THE TACKLE TABLE On the table, there is a definite difference between these reels. Pick up the Sweepfire and you’ll immediately notice a few things – the lack of an infinite anti-reverse and the lack of an anti-reverse switch, meaning you can never wind it backwards. Weight-wise, there’s not much between the Sweepfire and the BG, with the Certate only being a few grams lighter. You can definitely feel that the Certate is lighter in the hand. In the tackle store, you’ll pick a fair bit of distance between the Sweepfire and the others. The BG and Certate feel a lot closer, but you can still feel a little more resistance in the BG, whereas the Certate is buttery smooth all round, as you’d expect from a $600 reel. The unexpected result, though, is the closeness between the $200 BG and the $600 Certate. Is the Certate a better reel? Price aside, the answer is undoubtedly yes. As well as being aided by four more ball bearings, the Certate’s ‘Zaion’ body allows this reel to weigh in as the lightest of the bunch. Zaion is Daiwa’s answer to magnesium for body material. Magnesium is awesome and light, but does not like salt water at all. In Australia, lots of us like to run our reels in both salt and fresh water. A COUPLE OF TACKLE JUNKIES As part of this review, I sat down with Simon Goldsmith, Daiwa uber-fan, and we talked through the three reels. You can watch the interview by scanning the QR Code on this page. Simon’s done plenty of work for Daiwa writing copy for their catalogues and knows the intricacies of the reels. Coupled with the time I spent on the water with the tackle, we were able to come to a consensus on where we’d put our money in certain situations. This is how it went… Sweepfire: This is a very robust reel that can take a lot of the punishment that occasional anglers or kids can dish out. At under $100, it has limited elements in the drag system and there’s not much variance between too loose and too tight. That said, it caught plenty of great fish in the test period, has a fast gear ratio and didn’t show any

fatigue from being used in the salt water. It was particularly good at Forster, where a locked-up drag was a benefit and not a negative when fishing soft plastic baits in the racks. I wouldn’t use line under 6lb on it due to the lack of finesse in the drag. BG: If the Certate is at one end of the scale and the Sweepfire is at the other end, the BG is definitely closer to the Certate in performance. The $200 price tag would suggest that this should be the other way around, but ignore that. The BG can definitely handle lighter lines and a finesse angler could confidently fish down to very light lines and leaders, and lose fish through no fault of the reel. They are a little heavier and a little faster than the Certate, but they’re definitely not 1/3 of the reel for 1/3 of the price. 16 Certate: It was hard to fault the Certate. It was the lightest, the most butterysmooth and had the best drag system of all the reels we tested. It looks great and fishes just as well. It’s the slowest reel of the bunch, which would suit bream anglers perfectly in lots of situations. It’s probably not the most robust reel of the group – the all-aluminium BG may well have that title. Time will tell. CONCLUSIONS The big question, however, was if you had $600, would you buy one Certate, three BGs or six Sweepfires? Well, it depends on your situation. If it’s a reel that will get limited use or be thrashed by the kids, buy six Sweepfires, especially if you have six kids. If you’re a tournament angler that wants the most features for money, the BG is hard to go past. Lose a winning fish on a BG and you probably wouldn’t be blaming your gear. You’d spend your $600 on three BGs. But if you appreciate great gear and want to treat yourself, the 16 Certate is definitely the way to go. We couldn’t fault the reel and if you think that you’ve deserved a well-earned Christmas present, there’s no shame in leaving the Daiwa catalogue opened at the 16 Certate page. You just need to get the significant other with a disposable $600 to see it. For more information on all Daiwa reels, visit - Steve Morgan

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Fishing Fill-its

Mahindra Ag and Auto Australia launch mPact Mahindra Automotive Australia Pty LTD, trading as Mahindra Ag and Auto Australia, announced the launch of an exciting new range of side by sides called mPact in September. Designed and built in the USA, the new Mahindra mPact range is based on a full width three-seater chassis design that comes in numerous configurations to

and electric powered cargo box lift. All models feature standard true 4WD with autolock front differential and 27” ATV tires on 14” wheels, 30cm ground clearance and sturdy fully welded steel chassis with independent dual A-frame suspension on all four corners. Combined with CVT transmission with hi, lo, neutral, reverse, park and

in the range and unique to Mahindra. Available in either Kohler 747cc petrol or 1000cc diesel configurations, the Flex Hauler offers a true work vehicle with decent range from its 34L fuel tank. The aluminium tray lends itself to numerous dirty work conditions, and makes for an easy to clean and hose out checker plate tray option, not seen in Australia before.

The new Mahindra side by sides go harder and tow even more.

The new Mahindra mPact range is based on a full width three-seater chassis design that comes in numerous configurations to suit Australian conditions suit Australian conditions. The 750 B Spec, featuring Kohler 747cc petrol engine, 56.3km/h top speed, class leading cargo box capacity of 544kg with gas shock lift assist, and class-leading tow capacity of 952kg are just the start of the range. The 750 S adds alloy wheels, front hitch

handbrake applied to all four wheels, large 260mm brake rotors, also on all four wheels, the Mahindra mPact is designed to haul more, tow more and go more than the competition. The unique Flex Hauler with electric lift, aluminium drop side tray is the stand-out

Topping out the range are two six-seater crew cab models, available in petrol or diesel, still with a decent cargo box capacity of 453kg. The all-new Mahindra mPact range is available at a dealer near you. Pricing starts at $16,990 ride away for 750 B. For more information, see www.

The aluminium tray lends itself to numerous dirty work conditions, and makes for an easy to clean and hose out checker plate tray option, not seen in Australia before.

With features like the sturdy fully welded steel chassis, the mPact range is tougher. ABOUT MAHINDRA The Mahindra Group focuses on enabling people to rise through solutions that power mobility, drive rural prosperity, enhance urban lifestyles and increase business efficiency. A multinational group based in Mumbai, India, Mahindra provides employment opportunities to over 200,000 people in over 100 countries. Mahindra operates in the key

industries that drive economic growth, enjoying a leadership position in tractors, utility vehicles, information technology, financial services and vacation ownership. In addition, Mahindra enjoys a strong presence in the agribusiness, aerospace, components, consulting services, defence, energy, industrial equipment and more. In 2015, Mahindra & Mahindra was recognized as the Best Company for CSR

in India in a study by the Economic Times. In 2014, Mahindra featured on the Forbes Global 2000, a comprehensive listing of the world’s largest, most powerful public companies, as measured by revenue, profit, assets and market value. The Mahindra Group also received the Financial Times Boldness in Business Award in the Emerging Markets category, 2013. - Mahindra Automotive Australia Pty LTD


Fishers invited to free Murray ‘codference’ for sustainability Freshwater fishers are being invited to Shepparton on Sunday 11 December for Victoria’s first ever Murray ‘codference’ where they can learn about the health of our Murray cod fisheries, how to improve their fishing and how they can contribute to long term sustainability. The ‘codference’ is part of the State Government’s $46 million Target One Million plan for recreational 84


fishing, which aims to get more people fishing, more often and grow participation to one million by 2020. Fisheries Victoria Executive Director, Travis Dowling, said ‘codference’ topics would include the record stocking of Murray cod to improve fishing in rivers and lakes, indigenous connections to the species, habitat restoration efforts and a progress report on how the new slot limits are working. “Dr Stuart Rowland

from NSW, a nationally recognised expert on Murray cod, will present the keynote address and reflect on times gone by and the resurgence of the species,” Mr Dowling said. “We will also hear from cod fishing legends Rod Mackenzie and Rod Harrison about their angling tips and experiences, and how the attitudes of most recreational anglers towards Murray cod have changed for the better.

“Their talks will be complemented by a presentation from aquatic veterinarian, Dr Paul Hardy Smith, on better handling practises for Murray cod, which is more important than ever for big cod following the introduction of the slot limit in 2014 that requires all cod over 75cm to be released. “For those interested in the carp virus, Matt Barwick from NSW Fisheries will outline what’s happening

nationally with the proposed control method and how, should it proceed, anglers might get involved and help out.” The ‘codference’ will be held at the Eastbank Conference Centre, 70 Welsford Street, from 9.30am until 3.30pm. Tea and coffee will be available and lunch will be provided. Mr Dowling said the ‘codference’ built on the success of last year’s Talk Wild Trout conference

in Mansfield, which attracted hundreds of keen anglers from across the state and will be repeated on Saturday 5 November 2016. Registration for the Murray ‘codference’ is free and can be done via emailing improving. au or calling 03 8392 6876. Learn more about the day, including speakers and themes,at codference. – ECODEV




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November spearfish hunt worth whiting about WEST COAST

Brett Illingworth

November still sees us in the grip of squid mania. They’re red hot in Western Port and Port Phillip bays. Once a patch is located, it’s easy to spear your allowable ten fish. Finding the patch is the only difficulty. Don’t expect any of your mates to

In general, whiting are skittish and will react to noise or sudden movement with a lightning escape from danger. Thankfully, they’re also quite inquisitive and will come in to inspect anything that the other fish species are showing an interest in. Whiting are located on sandy patches, adjacent to reef or weed growth. In ocean locations, favourite haunts are in kelp rooms with

Wait. A school of red mullet seen from the surface is a good indicator. Red mullet stir crustaceans from the bottom with their barbells. Whiting follow and eat any remnants. Again, descend and lie in wait with gun ready to fire. Resist the temptation to track the fish with the gun. As the school passes and circles, the fish will progressively get

Odie Charles with some crayfish caught off jet skis.

The author and a lovely King George whiting, caught from the peninsula. divulge hot spots. Get out there and look. Spearing ten of the large breeders per day is a little excessive – restraint may go a long way to improving our image. By the middle of next month, the run will be over and then our thoughts can turn to crayfish and yellowtail kingfish. Cray season begins on November 16. Don’t forget to dock the tails as soon as possible at the water’s edge. This is also a great time of year for hunting the elusive King George whiting as they feature this month. Without a doubt, whiting are my favourite finned fish to hunt. They look good, taste sensational and can be demanding to hunt. You can’t simply swim up to a whiting and smack it. They require a certain degree of finesse, patience, good breath-hold and total silence.

sandy bottoms or in long kelp bordered sand gutters. I have four distinct whiting techniques depending on area and fish numbers. These techniques have only one common denominator – silence. I hunt alone. Noisy buddies may ruin a chance at good fish. If I’m specifically targeting whiting, all other fish are left alone until the intended quarry is secured. I use berley, but only to attract other species. These, in turn, may attract my whiting. In Port Phillip Bay, where large schools are encountered, anticipation is the key. Slow kicking or drifting, be aware of your surroundings. Be relaxed and breathed up, ready to drop at the mere hint. A glint in the sunlight over the sand can mean fish. Have a deep, final breath. Descend and lie motionless on the bottom, gun extended.


locations can be handled in a slightly different fashion. If they are in the gutter or kelp room, dive quietly and position yourself inside the entrance. The fish, wanting to vacate the area, will try to swim past you and present a good target. Don’t chase the fish, or wildly track it. Jerky movement or noise may convince the nervous fish to leave by swimming up and over the gutter, depriving you of a shot.

A cracker catch of King George whiting from Killarney. closer as those at the rear of the school will cut the corner in front of you, in an effort to catch up with the head of the pack. When one crosses within range and dead in line, it’ll be yours.

Some fresh calamari from Queenscliff. NOVEMBER 2016

Smaller groups of 3-6 fish at ocean locations are often found at the open ends of a gutter. I try not to cut off their escape route and dive at the dead-end that faces the opening. As the fish swim down gutter for a look, prepare for a head-on shot. Knowing they have an escape route may embolden the fish to approach nearer than normal. As the first fish turns, take your shot on the

closest fish. Once one of them makes a decision to go, the others will follow. Lone fish in similar ocean

Solo fish adjacent to reef in shallow water will try to hide from you. They may find an overhanging piece of

kelp on the sand and contort themselves into the shape of the letter S. An S-shaped whiting may easily be approached and shot from the surface. Drift over the fish with minimal movement to position yourself directly over the target. A good shot is all that’s required. Try to nullify the effects of surface movement. Accuracy is all-important. The quietest stalk is worthless if you’re unable to finish with a good holding shot. King George whiting are a small target. Practice makes perfect. When specifically targeting these, I prefer a 100cm gun firing a 6mm shaft with a single point. Combined with thin 190lb mono, this is a lightning fast setup. There are instances when Whiting behave as silly as sweep or leatherjackets. Enjoy these moments, for they are the exception rather than the rule. If you apply the above techniques all the time, your catch success should improve considerably. Whiting may be found anywhere in this state including both bays. My favourite locations are Portsea, Killarney and Diamond Bay. Whiting grow to over 1kg, but any fish over 600g is worthy of praise. Beware, large whiting are addictive.

An impaled whiting off Sorrento Ocean Beach.

Garmin takes out the NMEA awards For the second year in a row, Garmin has received the honour of being the most recognised company in the marine electronics field from the National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA). In addition to being named Manufacturer of the Year during the annual NMEA Conference in the US last week, Garmin received seven Product of Excellence

Awards in the following categories: autopilot, multifunction display, mobile application aid to navigation, mobile application utility, fishfinder, AIS and multimedia entertainment. Garmin vice president of worldwide sales, Dan Bartel said the coveted awards were the result of Garmin’s dedication to the marine industry. “We are incredibly

honoured and humbled to yet again be recognised as the Manufacturer of the Year by the NMEA and to have so many of our products and applications receive top honours,” Bartel said. “It’s a true testament to our continued commitment to design, manufacture, sell and support industry-leading products.” For the fourth year in a row, Garmin received

an award in the autopilot category for its GHP Reactor Hydraulic Autopilot with SmartPump. The GHP Reactor was Garmin’s first recreational autopilot system to utilise AHRS technology and boasts the usability, installation flexibility, and many other features that prove valuable for any vessel. Garmin also earned accolades in the MFD category, another consecutive honour. This year’s MFD award went to the GPSMAP 8624, a 24-inch all-in-one chartplotter with the highest screen resolution on the market and lighteningfast processing speeds. The GPSMAP 8624 comes preloaded with both BlueChart g2 coastal and LakeVü HD inland maps, and is fully network compatible for radar,




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autopilot, instruments, multiple screens, sensors, remote sonar modules, digital switching, thermal cameras, and more. It’s sold as the GPSMAP 8424 in Australia and New Zealand. Smartphone applications are essential tools for boaters in today’s connected world. Garmin BlueChart Mobile, a route planning application with streaming weather capabilities, was named the best mobile application aid to navigation. Garmin Helm, an app allowing boaters to view and control their chartplotter from a smartphone or tablet, won the award for mobile application utility. Other Garmin products recognised include the GSD 26 CHIRP professional sonar module with broadband spread-spectrum signal technology, and the AIS

600, a blackbox transceiver that sends and receives vessel information and AIS target data. FUSION, a Garmin brand, also won the new multimedia entertainment category for the AV750 Marine Stereo System that features a marine-ready DVD/ CD player, Wi-Fi/Bluetooth connectivity and more. Garmin’s marine product portfolio includes some of the industry’s most sophisticated chartplotters and touchscreen multifunction displays, sonar technology, high-definition radar, autopilots, highresolution mapping, sailing instrumentation and other products and services that are known for innovation, reliability and ease-of-use. For further information, visit en-AU. – Garmin










1 7 ING of



Boom time for Blue Rock bounty MELBOURNE

Corey Gallagher

A truly magnificent setting in the foothills of Mount Baw Baw, Blue Rock Lake is a spectacular place to target freshwater species in Victoria. Surrounded by steep, wooded banks, the lake’s edges are jam-packed with fallen and standing timber, combined with rocky points, drop offs and

premier bass impoundment in Victoria. Bass are the drawcard for many travelling to Blue Rock, however many species are on offer including brown and rainbow trout, redfin, carp and even the odd eel. FISHING METHODS AND TECHNIQUES Although bass can be targeted all year round at Blue Rock, but my preference is to fish the lake during summer when warmer water temperatures

colours such as pinks and greens. I also like to have a variety of cicadas at my disposal, as on occasion the bass will be more likely to hit a cicada with a more subtle action, particularly during glassed out conditions. However, on those windier days a cicada with a more dramatic action can attract more attention. Retrieving a cicada isn’t particularly technical, and my preference is to simply slow

The size and manoeuvrability of a kayak is perfectly suited to moving between the standing timber at Blue Rock. Photo courtesy of Darren Weda.

reedy flats. The fish holding structure within the lake is plentiful to say the least. Located in Gippsland near the small township of Willow Grove, just over 1.5 hours east of Melbourne, Blue Rock is easily accessible and perfectly suited to kayak anglers. ACCESS The boat ramp on Old Tanjil Road just to the north of the township offers kayak anglers an excellent place to launch. Facilities include a concrete ramp, adequate parking, toilet block and picnic tables. Launching here is ideal for those looking to access the Tanjil Arm. There is another ramp located near the dam wall off Spillway Road and offers great access to the southern sections of the lake. TARGET SPECIES Since 2002, over 160,000 Australian bass fingerlings have been released into Blue Rock Lake, making it the

result in far more active bass, particularly around the heavily snag laden edges of the lake. The highlight of any trip to Blue Rock for me is those first few hours of daylight when the bass are more than willing to smack surface offerings. Casting cicada style hardbodies in amongst the heavily wooded edges is a very visually exciting way to catch a bass and always gets the heart pumping. Accurate casts are a must! Bass are reluctant to move away from the safety provided by a fallen log or rock, so landing your cicada in tight against the structure will greatly increase your chance of a surface strike. I will often cast over the top of a log and pull my cicade back over the top in an attempt to entice a strike. When it comes to colours, blacks are always a standout, however it doesn’t hurt to have a few contrasting


Nick Mace with a well conditioned bass, the main drawcard for most travelling to Blue Rock Lake. Photo courtesy of Darren Weda.

with a few twitches and pauses thrown in. Beetle spin rigged plastics are relatively snag resistant and can be worked through the snags effectively. Natural colours work best with greens and olives my go-to. The techniques mentioned above are really just an example of the many different effective methods that can be used at Blue Rock. Lipless crankbaits, spinnerbaits, small poppers, bent style minnows, surface walkers and plastics can all

Darren Weda pulls a nice bass from a steep edge laden with fallen trees and rocks, providing plenty of cover for this bass to ambush his lure. Photo courtesy of Darren Weda.

produce at the lake. Trolling is also worth a shot, particularly if chasing trout. SAFETY Kayaking at Blue Rock does have its hazards, and the hidden timber sitting just beneath the surface has been known to cause significant damage to mirage drive and similar leg powered units. Keep an eye out for any potential hazards when moving around the lake, and in periods of low light, it pays to reduce your speed when moving through areas of standing timber to avoid damaging your kayak. Blue Rock Lake often requires a long paddle to reach the more productive areas, so a relatively high fitness level can be beneficial. As always please remember to wear your PFD and keep a bailer onboard as required by law in Victoria. CONCLUSION Kayaks are perfect for taking on the tight confines of standing timber litter throughout Blue Rock Lake, and are able to navigate easily between the timber allowing easy access to heavily snagged areas. In recent years, the average size of bass in the lake has increased, and with regular catches of fish over 40cm, it is truly a magnificent fishery and well worth the effort of spending a day on the water.

wind the cicada and throw in a few pauses, usually while still in close proximity to the structure or edge. Make sure your drag is well set, as if a

The highlight of any trip to Blue Rock for the author is those first few hours of daylight when the bass are more than willing to smack surface offerings. 88

bigger bass hits your lure, extracting it from all that timber can be a challenge, so the use of heavier leaders in the 10lb + range are highly recommended. Once the surface bite slows at Blue Rock, a variety of techniques can be successfully employed. Casting crankbaits and bumping them into the fallen timber can be very productive. Floating crankbaits are essential, as they allow you to pause your lure and float it up over the top of the timber. It’s often during the pause that the bass will strike. Similarly, longer profile minnow style hardbodied lures worked in the same manner will produce. Another very productive technique at Blue Rock is casting a beetle spin rigged soft plastic into the slightly deeper water around 2-4m. Curl or paddle-tail plastics in the 3” range are perfect when rigged on a 1/12oz jighead. I like to cast at vertical timber, snags or deeper edges and allow the plastic to sink to the bottom then pausing before retrieving slowly back up through the water column

Darren Weda pulls a nice bass from a steep edge laden with fallen trees and rocks, providing plenty of cover for this bass to ambush his lure. Photo courtesy of Darren Weda.





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Tech Tricks

Using Tackle Tactics SnakelockZ weedless rigs BRISBANE

Gordon Macdonald

Mangrove jack and estuary cod become more frequent catches in rivers and estuaries in the warmer months. These fish like the meanest, gnarliest structure, which gives them both refuge and ambush locations. They commonly dart from the structure, engulf prey and head straight back into the thick of it, in the blink of an eye. Anglers need to get their offerings extremely close to the structure to elicit the strike, so having

an offering that is unlikely to foul on structure is a major advantage. Weedless or snagless rigging allows you to get your offering very close to structure and work the lure through or over the snag without fouling up. There are many ways to achieve this snag resistance for your soft plastics, but one of the easiest to use is the TT SnakelockZ rigs. They have a changeable weight system, plus a moulded locking device, which holds your plastic in place. This avoids the head of the plastic pulling back along the hook after a tail strike. Let’s look at how to effectively rig up, using these weedless rigs.


As all weights have the same spiral attachment, hooks from 2/0 to 8/0 and weights from 1/12oz to 1/2oz are interchangeable. The heavy-duty Mustad hooks are ideal for tough estuarine brawlers, yet there is a lighter duty SnakelockZ Finesse range for when you require a thinner gauge hook.


Push the hook eye through the hole you made in the head of the plastic from the underneath side, or chin, of the plastic while holding the head between your thumb and forefinger.


Position your plastic so that the point of insertion is in line with the hook point, and then push the point centrally through the back of the plastic. If you don’t get it correct first time, take it out and redo it. It’s important that the point exits centrally out the back. 90



Soft plastic shads and prawns are common fare for the likes of cod, jacks, barra and trevally. SnakelockZ come in many hook sizes and head weights. The weight off any hook size can easily be added to another hook size, so you can mix and match hooks and weights. For the ZMan SwimmerZ 4” and the Atomic Prong 4”, I use a 4/0 hook.


The weighted head attaches to the hook eye with a special stainless steel, pig-tail style spiral hook. When you want to change weights, or try another plastic rigged with a different hook, just twist the head off the hook eye by turning it to follow the pig-tail.


SnakelockZ have a small white metal ‘keeper’ lump moulded onto the neck of the hook, to stop the plastic being torn down the hook during a tail strike. However, this keeper doesn’t allow all plastics to be rigged in the conventional manner. Pushing this lump through the head of the plastic is likely to tear it and render it useless, especially soft plastics not made from ElaZtech.


Once pushed all the way through, your plastic should sit like this on the hook, with the hook eye in the centre of the nose. The weight can be attached now if you wish to avoid the hook eye pulling out during the next stage of rigging.


The hook point is now sitting flat along the back. With the point inserted in the plastic, it can be worked over heavy structure. A strike will pop the hook point free. Many plastics can be rigged weedless. If you have no luck with a shad, just take it off the SnakelockZ and put on a prawn profile. You’ll only need to cut your leader when you change your weight to a different size.


To rig our plastics, we actually need to insert the hook eye through the head of our plastic instead of the point. First, pierce the plastic in the correct spot using the hook point, to make a guide hole for the hook eye to push through.


Put the point of the hook inside the belly slot if your plastic has one. Use the tip of your thumb to mark the position that coincides with the rear of the hook. This is where you need to push the hook point through.


For even better snag-proofing you can use this trick. Firmly squeeze the area where the hook point is sitting to slightly push the plastic forward at this spot. As you release the pressure, let the first few millimetres of the hook point penetrate into the plastic.

Isuzu D-Max SX auto BRISBANE

Wayne Kampe

Gone are the days when a work ute sat idle over the weekend, the engine cold until Monday morning. These days the humble ute is a rising star in the recreation scene, with some

their products in four door configuration, offer auto drive trains (with either 4x4 or 4x2 transmissions) and deliver savings of tens of thousands of dollars. In the hotly-contested utility market segment, the Isuzu D-Max shines thanks to a combination of a laid back 3L turbo diesel engine and excellent comfort levels.

tested the somewhat down spec SX, in 5-speed auto guise. The SX is a long way from a poverty pack sort of vehicle, thanks to a decent standard of finish throughout – although cabin tonings are practical rather than fancy – and it has a couple of handy dash features such as Bluetooth, aux and a USB port. There’s also a 12V

Tidy frontal styling is a feature of D-Max design.

The SX in action just north of the Moogerah boat ramp. When we needed it we used the 4x4 capacity of the D-Max ute. of the more upmarket utes now giving the large 4x4 wagons a run for their money when it comes to market share. Thanks to high levels of creature comforts and enhanced tow capacity to 3.5 tonnes, modern utilities are now a common sight in front of caravans, camper trailers and boats. Other big reasons for this resurgence are easy to find. They are called dollars. While the big 4x4 wagons such as Patrols, Land Cruisers, Pajeros, Everests and Prados make a meal of this kind of work, they also make a meal of your bank balance. By contrast, virtually all of the ute manufacturers offer

outlet in the higher of the two gloveboxes on the left side of the dash area. Also standard were wellmade cloth seats, basic air conditioning (no climate air), electric windows, cruise control and a decent radio with a couple of speakers. Rear seat passengers won’t be short of room in the 4-door SX, as Isuzu have achieved an excellent balance of space

4.3m TABS Bullshark and trailer on the tow ball, the Isuzu ran sweetly at 1800rpm for 100km/h and returned a fuel consumption on a trip to Moogerah Dam of 8.3L per 100km. With a braked towing rating of 3000kg and unbraked being a generous 750kg, we hardly noticed the boat at all. D-MAX KEPT ME DRY Our fishing trip to

Whether towing or doing some easy cruising, the D-Max four cylinder diesel takes hills in its stride just as easily as long straights. Additionally, for a vehicle that doubles as either a workhorse or recreational pony, the D-Max suspension set-up is pretty refined. True, there are springs at the rear (most competitors have these) but the ride around town won’t be too hard – and if there’s a bit of gear in the rear pay load area (rated for up to 600kg) the ride just gets better all round. With ample models to choose from there seems to be a D-Max for everyone. While Isuzu does offer high-end models with all the bells and whistles, I have

A neat centre console set-up sees the 4WD and other controls conveniently placed for the driver.

The D-Max’s interior is plain but it’s easy to keep clean, and is in keeping with a work vehicle’s layout.

for both front and rear seat travellers. INITIAL IMPRESSIONS So, without sat nav, rear view camera and the like, you might be thinking that the SX D-Max is a bit Spartan – and perhaps it is. However, it’s a well performing, easy pulling and easy riding 4WD with both low and high range options available at the touch of a centre console switch, and that’s more important than the little bells and whistles. With its free running, 4-cylinder 130kW/ 380Nm turbo-charged engine complete with all-oflife steel timing chain, the diesel engine never seems stressed, taking everything easily in its stride. On the highway, with our

Moogerah gave me the perfect opportunity to try out the 4WD system of the D-Max. A nasty 20 knot westerly wind blew in at

lunch time, and I reckon when it’s necessary to tie the boat to a tree just to keep fly fishing, it’s time to give it away! Returning to the ramp near the camping area was easy enough, but from there things were looking tough. A nasty set of breakers had become established right across the ramp, so we had no choice but to avoid the ramp and move around the corner to the north to load the boat, to avoid me getting drenched with cold water. We backed the D-Max well down, winched the boat up, and with the ute’s console switch engaging 4WD the boat and trailer came out of the mud and weed with ease. That is what’s great about all ‘proper’ 4x4s – when you need it, you’ve got it! So that’s my take on the Isuzu SX D-Max. This ute may not have all the upmarket bling and fancy creature comforts of the other D-Max models and competing brands, but at around $39,000 drive away it certainly has a lot going for it. A 5-year, 130000km warranty is standard. Bear in mind that Isuzu has sold over 9000 D-Max utes for the first half of this year so they certainly have some serious runs on the board. If your plan is to work all week and play on the weekends, it will definitely fit the bill.

There’s plenty of rear leg and head room in the D-Max. NOVEMBER 2016


First things to check when the boat stops dead BRISBANE

Wayne Kampe

I’m no marine mechanic, but I’m a boat owner who has seen some of the things that can spoil a day on the water. It’s something nearly every boat owner experiences sometime. The boat is humming along quite well and then suddenly, there’s no sound from the engine, or it revs really high and the craft isn’t moving. It’s running rough and can’t

much to do except organize a tow home. Membership with the Volunteer Marine Rescue is a great safeguard, as this facility not only assists with breakdowns but can help with tows off sand banks and many other marine issues. FUEL SUPPLY With smaller engines hooked up to a tote tank of fuel, we could rightly regard fuel supply problems as a prime suspect for many stoppages. I once saw the in-tank pick up pipe that sucks fuel from the tank and up to the main fuel

stops after running a bit ragged for a few seconds, and then refuses to start, fuel issues should be a primary suspect. Take a look at the fuel tank and see if the breather on the cap has been opened or if the cap has been loosened a turn from when the tank was last filled. Boaters often remove their fuel tank from the boat and fill it at the local service station, after which the cap is given some serious tightening to prevent nasty petrol smells escaping in the car. I’ve done this myself.

The isolator switch is one item that can get up to mischief. Replacing it every couple of years is a smart move.

Clips on fuel hoses can work loose and are a common cause of engine stoppage. seem to snap out of it. None of these scenarios are what boaters want, but things happen. A few thoughts on the topic won’t go astray. Most small craft are outboard powered, so we’ll stick primarily with these engines. Remember, this is about trouble shooting first – if a total engine failure occurs, there’s not

line connections fall off the metal fitting into the bottom of the tank, on a brand new fuel tank. This meant that the engine would start when fuel was slopping around in the near full tank and run for a few seconds before stopping again. It was frustrating and took time to find – an extremely rare occurrence. If the boat suddenly

Another fuel issue comes from the click-on connection between the fuel line and tank coming undone, which they sometimes do. This can be rectified. A couple pumps on the fuel primer bulb will often get things moving again. All fuel line connections that are accessible are also worth scrutinising. Cheap factory



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clips can come loose, connections come asunder, the primer bulb can split (a band-aid will fix it) and all these situations can let air into the fuel line to interfere with engine suction. If a dodgy clip is diagnosed, sometimes merely cutting off a small bit of fuel line and reconnecting a tighter section via the clip will keep things going well enough to get home. Be advised before powering off, once a fuel issue is solved and the engine fires up, a fuel injected engine should be given time to idle for a while until it’s running smoothly. Full fuel flow needs to be resumed or the engine will struggle to run evenly under load, simply because the engine computer needs to be satisfied that all’s well, including fuel flow. An older style two-stroke won’t suffer from this short delay – with fuel in the cylinders it’s ready and willing to go. ELECTRICAL ISSUES Outboard engines come with emergency cut out switches – the kill switch.

It’s important to ensure that the switch is engaged correctly on the tiller arm, or up near the forward controls where these are installed, otherwise the engine will never start whether it’s a key start or pull start model. If a pull start engine won’t fire up after apparently running well, and fuel tank cap or lines are eliminated as the problem, I’d be casting hard looks at that kill switch. The trouble is, without some electrical knowledge, not much can be done on the water, apart from disconnecting and reconnecting the switch into it’s clip, to try to overcome or bypass a possibly bad electrical contact. Incidentally, the latter tactic is worth trying. Electrical issues can occur in both small and large engines. One of the most common is a total battery failure. Any boat battery can fail after a few years of sitting in a boat, so it’s wise to have the battery load tested from time to time to assess its health. Even a good battery can

drop it’s bundle. A canny boat owner will be grateful for the alternative pull start system the engine has, or will have read the service book that came with the engine and know exactly how to get a rope onto the engine’s fly wheel to give it a pull start. I saw a mate start a 90hp outboard with a rope while we were a long way off the Gold Coast. He knew which parts of the shroud around the flywheel to remove, had the tools aboard to do it and he did it at home as an exercise. He was confident in the whole procedure. Another culprit for electrical failure is the good old battery isolator switch, if fitted. These items are not bulletproof and if one’s subjected to spray or is located in a place where it can be damp for a fair time, maybe in an enclosed hatch, it can easily short out and stop the engine. Worse, it can fry the engine computer. Maintain your VMR membership as the engine sure won’t be starting again that day.

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The good old kill switch – when exposed to salt water these systems can cause engine stoppage, but sometimes removing and then replacing the unit can see it working again.

If the isolator switch has dropped its bundle, it’s likely that all electronics can drop out as well, because power won’t be exiting the battery. Have the phone aboard to ring VMR. In truth, electrical problems from isolator switches are a lot more common than is generally understood. Replace the unit every couple of years if it’s in a place where salt water or salt spray can get near it. PLENTY NOISE, NO PROGRESS Let’s take another scenario: the boat has been running well but there was a brush with a sand bank or two recently, or contact with stumps up the top of that lovely dam where the bass and goldens were on the boil. Suddenly the engine is revving quite well, but the boat isn’t moving forward. Outboard engines have a rubber bush in the propeller to avoid hard jarring when gears are engaged, and to act as a primary shock absorber for the gearbox when hard objects are hit. This rubber bushing can totally chew out over time or with sustained impacts. The result will be a total loss of propulsion under hard power, but sometimes a very gentle application of throttle can get the boat

Find what revs the engine wants to run at and stay with that one throttle setting. The fuel filter will usually be a job for a marine mechanic unless it’s conveniently located – some certainly aren’t. If the boat can get back to the ramp, the day ends alright.

Those are a few first response scenarios, and I sincerely hope that you don’t have to refer to any of them. All else failing, it’s time to call VMR – you can join on the spot if you’re not a member. Get the Vee sheet out to advise other boats that you’re not able to proceed.

VMR membership is an important part of boat ownership. When all else fails, a tow home is far better than sitting in the sun with the fun quickly departing from the day. moving again. It depends on how badly the bushing is damaged. If all propulsion is lost, it’s time for a tow. HOT STUFF Your outboard might have overheating problems. While these incidents can occur as the result of water pump impeller failure – a lack of proper water service – a more likely incident will involve an obstruction over the engine’s water inlet. If the flow of water from

the engine is steaming just before the engine shuts down, lift the outboard and check for a plastic bag or other debris around the inlet area. Fortunately, many of today’s high end engines are designed to detect overheating and respond by shutting down to prevent seizure. If an obstruction is found, give the engine fifteen minutes to cool and try a restart. THE CHAFF CUTTER This describes an engine

that is misfiring badly, running rough, or seems to be trying to stop but not quite doing so. This can be a difficult situation to diagnose out on the water, but is often attributed to fuel filter issues. The only option is to keep the engine going – so long as there are no overheat alarms present. Don’t push things too hard, just sneak back to base as quietly and efficiently as possible.

Harley Ray with a healthy Bermagui bream. Photo: Bermagui Bait & Tackle

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The world’s #1 aluminium fishing boats! Tracker’s outstanding quality and unique manufacturing process have made them the world’s largest boat builder – producing more than 40,000 aluminium fishing boats per year. Their foam-filled, unsinkable, 3mm plate alloy hulls are robotically welded to deliver superior quality at a lower cost – and are backed by a Limited Lifetime Warranty. Tracker’s Pro Guide series is designed with a deep-vee hull for exceptional performance, even in rough waters. Their Diamond Coat finish is a Tracker exclusive that resists oxidation, providing protection and a shine lasting 70% longer. Standard features include a Minn Kota trolling motor and Lowrance colour sounder, plus tournament-ready live well systems and rod lockers.

Contact dealer to arrange a test drive today

Hopefully it will be rough, as you’ll be stunned by the performance of these boats when the weather gets challenging!





Tracker’s ProGuide 16WT with Mercury 75 4-stroke


Steve Morgan

They say you only get about a week of winter in Queensland. Some social media commentators say it was a Wednesday this year, but I disagree. It was definitely the Thursday that we took the Tracker Pro Guide 16WT for a spin on Moogerah Dam. In the amphitheatre of the Scenic Rim, a cold southerly chopped up the lake and even at 9am, we were reaching for the jackets. For your information if you’re not a Queenslander, jackets are usually off just after the sun comes up. And as hard as the wind tried to blow, it couldn’t scuff up the surface enough to really test the 20° deadrise in this 16-footer. That was fine, though. This boat was built

for comfort and fishability, and that’s exactly what we got to test on this wintry day. Arriving on a locally built, single axle Dunbier trailer, the package towed easily with Tim Stessl’s work ute and definitely looked the part with the colour co-ordinated paint job that complemented the Mercury strapped to the transom. Admittedly, I’d never ridden in an American aluminium Deep V before: plenty of aluminium bass boats, but this was the first I’d driven that was designed for rougher water than a freshwater pond. “It’s been forty years since we riveted aluminium boats in Australia, and Tracker boats have been fully welded since 2012 onwards,” said Tim Stessl, who works for the local importer, Fishing and Leisure Boats in Molendinar. “This hull is made from two, big sheets of marine grade plate aluminium. It’s strong and has the best warranty in

SPECIFICATIONS Length (hull)....................................................4.88m Beam................................................................2.24m Bottom width..................................................1.78m Max hp...............................................................90hp Capacity....................................................5 persons Weight Capacity..............................................567kg Fuel (underfloor).................................................56L the industry,” he continued. Indeed, the hull seemed tough as nails and very quiet when bouncing across the worst that Moogerah had to offer. The consequence, though, of such a deadrise was the fact that the hull banked nicely into turns. Definitely not punt-like, but I felt right at home driving it. It may be because my first plate bass boat was copied – design-wise – from an image of a Tracker boat in an old American catalog. Regardless, after a while it was off to the shelter of Moogerah’s famous Gorge to wet a line and test the fishability.

Mercury’s 2.1L 4-strokes keep on impressing. Not only do they look the part on these Tracker hulls, they pop the boat up and on to the plane with ease. 94


The first bit I loved was up on the front deck, there’s a compartment to hold the foot control for the electric motor. It’s a small thing, I know, but there’s nothing worse than the pedal bouncing around when the going gets rough. It’s no good for the pedal and no good for your boat. Secondly, I found the gunwale height was actually low enough (or conversely the deck was high enough) to be able to pitch-cast underhand. Again, it’s another small thing, but it’s the ability to do this that helps define the functionality of a fishing boat. And the more fishing boxes this boat ticks, the better. Under the front deck, there’s a plumbed and divided 87L livewell that also folds a bait bucket – great for keeping anything from yabbies through to your tournament haul. Walk through the windscreen, and that’s where the comfort starts. The height of the screen keeps you on the calm side of the elements and the lower floor in the cockpit helps to keep you (and the kids) in. The rod box lids running down each side also act as seats and overall, there’s a whole lot of comfort back there for those who aren’t that keen to be standing on the front deck casting all day. The ability to really customise your back deck

layout comes in two ways – the VersaTrack inner gunwale system allows you to mount a variety of options – from rod holders and rod racks through to cutting boards and cup holders. You can slide them along to wherever you want them positioned and then lock them off with the

just need to go for a ride in one to feel for yourself, and that’s exactly what you should do if you’re interested in researching this style of boat further. Visit www.wesfrost for plenty more information. The price of this boat as tested was just

With the 20° vee, you can definitely feel the hull banking into turns. Reminds me of my first everbass boat, which was modelled from a picture of a Tracker bass boat. No surprises there. twist of a nut. You can see it in action in the accompanying videos that you can watch by scanning the QR codes. Overall, the quality of the Tracker hull and fitout was much better than I’d expected it to be and the strength and quietness of the hull was equally impressive. Tim Stessl says that you VIDEO

Scan to watch Tim Stessl and Steve Morgan put the Tracker V16 through its paces.

under $42,900. • Quoted performance figures have been supplied by the writer in good faith. Performance of individual boat/motor/trailer packages may differ due to variations in engine installations, propellers, hull configurations, options, hull loading and trailer specifications. VIDEO

Scan to see Tim Stessl take you on a tour of the Tracker Pro Guide V16 WT.

At rest, there’s surprisingly little roll. Tim Stessl isn’t a petite ballerina and although you can see the port side riding a little deeper in the image, the roll feels negligible from the casting deck up front.

The 20° hull deadrise at the transom creates a soft ride and unique ‘banking-into-turns’ attitude, which make it a pleasure to ride in, whether you’re in the passenger or driver seat.

Get rid of any memories of Tracker boats being riveted – the Pro Guide V16 hull is made from only two, large, marine grade aluminium sheets and is bulletproof.

Internally, the cockpit is quite deep and small-kid-friendly. The tops of the rod boxes act as seats and there’s a variety of seat mounting bases – for travelling and for fishing.

The helm layout is simple and fluent. There’s modern additions like a mobile phone holder with a power outlet adjacent. Nailed it. With the wraparound windscreen, the phone even stays dry on a rough day. The VersaTrack rail system offers infinite possibilities for mounting rod holders, cutting boards, tackle boxes and drink holders. Twist the knob, slide them to wherever you want them and tighten.

The test Tracker is fitted with a splashwell that collects a little water when you kill the power while on plane.

Now that’s a glove box. Plenty of nearwaterproof storage in there and wind protection for the passenger.

Anyone that runs an autopilot-style electric motor will love this – a nook for the control pedal to travel in while underway. Amen. NOVEMBER 2016


Whittley CW1650 with Yamaha F70 goes large FMG

Steve Morgan

Over the last couple of years we’ve done plenty of boat tests on Whittleys – from cruisers to fishing boats and most things in between. The most watched Whittley test on YouTube that we’ve done is the smallest in the range. It used to be the entrylevel CW1600 at around 8500 views. That boat has now

We got to spend the day on the water with Genevieve Whittley, who works in the family business and loves the versatility and affordability of this entry-level fibreglass package. “For under $40,000, this boat is great for all sorts of fun with family and friends,” she said, “There’s plenty of shade, lots of fishing room and the standard marlin boards make it easy to get in and out of the boat while towing a tube around.” Indeed, it’s a small, light

package that’ll tow easily with most family cars and with a single-axle trailer, manoeuvrable into many suburban garages. The folddown bimini top helps with this process. The cabin is an open design, which helps to maximise apparent room and the helm is simple, compact and able to accommodate mid-level electronics quite easily. The test boat was fitted with the quality Raymarine Dragonfly unit. On the trailer, you can Maxing out a 50km/h with the Yamaha F70 4-stroke, the CW1650 is easy and economical to launch and drive.

Although there was no fuel metering available on the boat, rest assured that the Yamaha F70 runs on the smell of an oily rag. Daily fuel consumption will not be a determining factor on whether or not you go out. morphed into the CW1650 – just a little bit longer, but now large enough for it not to be mandatory to wear a PFD full-time in some states. That doesn’t sound like much, but it makes a big difference to a day on the water – especially in the warmer months. 96


SPECIFICATIONS Capacity....................................................5 persons Length................................................................5.1m Beam................................................................2.14m Boat Weight.....................................................525kg Max hp..............................................90hp (or 175kg) Website:.............. Facebook:..............................Whittley Marine Group

see there’s not much deadrise at the transom of this boat. Surprisingly, it wasn’t much of a factor on the test day. In up to 10 knots of breeze, the 1650 skipped soundly across any wind chop. As the waves get bigger, expect this hull to ride over the lumps more than through. It’s really a problem that won’t eventuate, as you wouldn’t be heading out in 20 knots in this rig anyway. Bigger and heavier Whittleys are more suited to the marginal days. As usual, the ridiculously frugal Yamaha F70 4-stroke uses virtually no fuel and it jumps the boat onto the plane easily with three on board. With a 14” propeller, it’s rigged for grunt, not top-end speed, with the rig topping out at around 50km/h. Whittley and their dealer network are proud of their on-water training and delivery, which is part of the tradition of owning a Whittley. “We like to show you how to launch and retrieve your boat

as well and take you through what all of the electronics and switches do on your handover,” said Genevieve, “which is particularly important for first-time boaties and customers stepping up into a drive-on trailer.” Genevieve also commented on the ease of washing down and cleaning the simple design of this package. You can hose everything down, let it dry and you’re ready to back it in the garage until the next weekend. The Whittley CW1650 packages start from $36,990 PERFORMANCE RPM.................. km/h 700...........................4 1000.........................5 2000....................... 10 3000....................... 16 4000.......................28 5000.......................43 5600.......................50 * fitted with 14” aluminium Yamaha propeller.

(which equates to less than $100 a week with finance) and you can get more information by watching the Fishing Monthly Boat Test video via the QR code or by visiting www.whittley • Quoted performance figures have been supplied by the writer in good faith. Performance of individual boat/motor/trailer packages may differ due to variations in engine installations, propellers, hull configurations, options, hull loading and trailer specifications. VIDEO

Scan this QR code on your smartphone to watch the CW1650 in action on Port Phillip Bay.

A simple dash design and open cabin help maximise usable space. The seats rotate 180° to face your spread of rods or watch the people being towed.

There’s a surprising amount of space in the front cabin and generous storage in the side pockets and under the seats.

Left: There’s a fair bit of cockpit space there to fit a couple of anglers in comfort. The rear seats are handy for when there’s four on board. Right: The fold-down canopy offers plenty of shade, if not total protection from the elements. The walk-through windscreen gives access to the bow and various anchoring duties.

Left: Genevieve Whittley demonstrating just how easy the CW1650 is to drive. Right: You never know that you will need a boarding ladder until you’re wallowing at the transom wondering how you’re going to climb up the outboard with dignity. The marlin boards and ladder are standard.

Left: It’s the little things, like the Fulton retractable straps at the transom and on the winch post, that simplify the process of launch and retrieve. If we had our way, they’d be on every boat in Australia. Once you’ve used them, you’ll never want a tie down strap again. Right: With four basic rod holders in the transom, you can expand the capacity with three-way inserts.

There’s only a small amount of deadrise in the 1650, so don’t expect it to ride like a 20ft+, but if you choose your days, the foamfilled glass will take a lot of the sting out of small chop.

Once you’ve had a drive-on boat and trailer combination, you’ll never go back. You’ll only be winching on the shallowest of all launches.

Whittley keeps the costs down by keeping the build no-frills and simple. NOVEMBER 2016


What’s New BOATING



Haines Signature Boats has released its widest runabout yet: the 550RF. The 550RF has more than 11 extra inches of deck space than its predecessor the 543RF. It also features a long-range 180L fuel tank, walk-through front hatch, stainless steel rod holders, large side pockets, live bait tanks, bait board, 32mm stainless steel rails and a walkthrough transom door, as standard. The new-look dash has room for one large or multiple screens, and there are plenty of optional upgrades available such as a Viper drum winch, Roswell Bluetooth sound systems and premium targa. Haines Signature believes the 550F is a true fishing weapon for those in pursuit of an A+ offshore performer. “This boat has been designed and built for our customers who’ve asked us for a runabout that’s capable of running well offshore, but also feels at home trolling rivers and dams,” said John Haines, Chief Executive Officer of The Haines Group. The 550RF has been rated with an outboard range from 115-150hp and is backed by a 10-year structural, 2-year parts warranty. It’s priced from $54,175 BMT.



The Poparazzi has a unique, high winged shape with rocker bottom that allows you to carve into the wake and glide across the water’s surface with minimal drag. With a turn of the boat, inside riders will teeter deep into the wake while the other riders will rise high above it! Multiple EVA foam body pads allow riders to comfortably perform every riding position imaginable. The unique High Rise Tower equipped with multiple double webbing foam handles with knuckle guards allow standing or kneeling on the back deck. The convenient Quick Connect tow point will get you started in a flash, and Speed Safety Valves allow the quickest inflation and deflation possible. Stand, sit, kneel, steer, lay, balance and freestyle on this cool ride! There are two models, the Poparazzi 2 (1-3 people) and the Poparazzi (1-2). Price: from $876



The Minn Kota EO provides up to nine hours of primary propulsion for smaller boats, meaning you’ve got more than enough power for a full day of fishing. There are plenty of features, including Digital Maximizer, which allows you to stay on the water up to five times longer on a single charge. And if you want to know exactly how much longer you’ve got, the Push-To-Test Battery Meter makes it easy. The EO’s Lever Lock Bracket is a solid 10-position bracket that features a quickrelease lever lock and reinforced composite material that resists flexing, warping and UV damage. EO’s high-efficiency prop features a unique, patented design with swept-back, flared blades for reliable performance. There are two models, the EO 1/2hp and EO 1hp. The EO 1/2hp is 12V and weighs 13.8kg, and the EO 1hp is 24V and weighs 17kg. Both models have a 36” (910mm) adjustable shaft. Price: from SRP $1769



Mercury’s two new VesselView multifunction displays are now available, along with the new VesselView Link digital interface. VesselView puts realtime data about your boat and engine performance at your fingertips. Now, the VesselView502 (5”) and VesselView702 (7”) displays go a step further to show data from up to four engines at once. The 502 can interface with broadband sonar with CHIRP, DownScan imaging, and a full-featured chart plotter. Equipped with a Micro SD card slot for installing Maps plus gauge updates, it also comes with internal high-speed 10Hz GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and is GoFree cloud-enabled. The 702 has an ethernet connection to interface with radar, sonar and chart-sharing. It has two video inputs, Micro SD card slots, and an internal GPS and chart plotter. A GoFree Wi-Fi module is included. VesselView Link is now also available – an under-the-dash system integrates SmartCraft data and control system with specific Simrad and Lowrance instruments.


The Fusion StereoActive watersports stereo delivers crystal clear audio, and the optional ActiveSafe securely houses your phone, keys and other valuables. StereoActive’s buttons are adjustable with the touch of a finger or the tap of a paddle, or you can control the unit with a compatible Garmin smartwatch. The locking mechanism securely fixes the unit in place, even in the event of capsizing. In the unlikely event that it does detach, it will float. StereoActive can stream audio via Bluetooth from music services such as Spotify, from a compatible A2DP Bluetooth-enabled device or you can use its AM/FM tuner. There’s a waterproof cavity for a low-profile USB for MP3 playback, and audio playback over USB is available for Apple lightning products and AOA 2.0 Android phones. You can also mount an action cam on the unit. The battery lasts up to 20 hours, and the USB port also provides playback and charging for compatible Apple and Android devices. Price: Approx $400



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Stacer has released two new models in their Ocean Ranger plate range: the 589 and 619 Ocean Ranger Hard Tops. They offer a more budget-friendly option that is still packed with power and strength. The new 589 now has more freeboard at 730mm, for better stability. It’s rated to 150hp with a 135L fuel tank, and an optional 80L secondary tank. The 619 has all the features of the larger hard top models, with more versatility when it comes to storage and towing. It’s rated to 200hp with a standard 168L fuel tank and an 80L optional fuel tank. All Ocean Ranger hard tops now come standard with trim tabs, and also feature Stacer’s new Side Deck Water Shield. All the seats in the range have been upgraded, and there are now two seating options for the 589 and 619 Ocean Rangers. The 619, 679 and 739 Ocean Ranger Hard Tops also feature new sliding side windows.

Please email contributions to: 98



visit for the latest tackle news - AS IT HAPPENS!


Pro XS FourStroke Performance Redefined Built on the legendary Pro XS reputation for superior hole shot, top end speed and durability. Mercury’s new 115HP Pro XS FourStroke redefines outboard performance.

Torque Torque (Nm) (Nm)

6500 6500

6000 6000

Engine Speed (rpm) Engine Speed (rpm)

5500 5500

5000 5000

4500 4500

4000 4000

3500 3500

3000 3000

Unbridled power, unexpectedly compact, uncompromising Unbridled power, unexpectedly compact, uncompromising reliability, unbelievably fuel efficient. Mercury’s all new 75-115hp reliability, unbelievably fuel efficient. Mercury’s allever newseen. 75-115hp FourStroke Range. Unlike anything the world has FourStroke Range. Unlike anything the world has ever seen.

2500 2500

everything everything you you know know about about 75-115hp 75-115hp FourStrokes. FourStrokes.

aLL new aLL 2.1L new modeL 2.1L modeL previous previous 1.7L (L) 1.7L (L) modeL modeL

2000 2000


115hp torqUe compariSoN 115hp FoUrStroke FoUrStroke torqUe compariSoN

115hp produces up to 23% morE 115hp produces up to acceleration 23% morE TorquE and quicker TorquE and quicker than the previous 1.7Lacceleration FourStroke. than the previous 1.7L FourStroke.

See your authorised Mercury Marine Dealer today. See your authorised Mercury Marine Dealer today.

See your authorised Mercury Marine Dealer today.

Alberton Alberton Marine

Echuca Eades Xtreme Marine

24 Sturt Street, Echuca Phone: (03) 5482 2333 | Fax: (03) 5482 2133 Email:

101 Tooradin Station Road, Tooradin Phone: (03) 5998 3107 | Fax: (03) 5998 3108 Email:

Bendigo Bendigo Marine & Outdoors

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JV Marine World Braeside (03) 9798 8883

She Left

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Nautical Marine CU



from dawn to dusk

• Plenty of powered and unpowered camping sites • BBQs • Playground

Lester Rd Yanakie WILSONS PROM E

03 5687 1385

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Naaj Marine 0421 955 371








Compleat Angler Wangaratta (03) 5722 4622

Nautical Marine has been providing all your boating and marine needs since 1976, and continues to ensure that your days on the water are enjoyable and safe.


Boat, motor & trailer packages!

TRADES AND SERVICES ADVERTISING Line listing from $90 + gst 6 months* 2cm x 2 from $195 + gst 6 months* 4cm x 2 from $320 + gst 6 months* 8cm x 2 from $590 + gst 6 months* Rates exclusive to Trades and Services Directory *Conditions apply Call (07) 3387 0835 or email

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21 Marine Parade MARLO VIC


03 5154 8268

• Deluxe cabins HOSTS: Les & Kathy HEYNE • Cabins with ensuite • Budget cabins • Premium ensuite vans • Powered & Unpowered sites • Pet friendly • Undercover BBQ areas in Marlo • Large oval • Kitchen Largest park • Camp fires • Kiosk the beach Short walk to • Coffee shops Marlo Ocean Views Caravan and Camping Park, Marlo (03) 5154 8268 Bemm River Holiday Accommodation & Boat Hire, Bemm River (03) 5158 4233 or 0427 584 233 Lazy Acre Log Cabins, Lakes Entrance (03) 5155 1323

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FISH TAXIDERMY Fish Taxidermist 0428 544 841


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SCREEN PRINTING Logan Specialised Screen Printing (07) 5546 4107

PH: 03 5984 1666 W: E: Nautical Marine: 139 - 141 Hotham Rd Sorrento Vic Nautical Marine (03) 5984 1666


BOAT TRAILER CENTRAL Vic Marine & Trailer Warehouse 0412 264 450

This section in V&TFM Fishing Monthly consolidates the trades and services in your area that are relevant to your fishing and boating. Whether you’re a local looking for more options or a travelling angler fishing around the state, this guide will direct you to reputable businesses in the area you’re searching.





EAST GIPPSLAND East Gippsland Charters 0400 564 032

WEST COAST Portland Fishing Charters, Portland (03) 5523 3020

SAMPLE AD - BUSINESS NAME This is where your copy will appear. You will have approximately 40 words within a 8x2 ad size.

FOR UP TO 10 PEOPLE •Swains Reef •Port Clinton •Stanage Bay •Island Head Creek •Shoalwater Bay •Pearl Bay P: 0419 789 921 Inya Dreams Fishing Charters, 0419 789 921 Reel Affair, Merimbula freecall 1800 233 247 Espirit Charters, Bermagui (02) 6493 4104 or 0407 260 110 Freedom Charters, Eden (02) 6496 1209 or 0415 602 446 Headland Fishing Adventures, Merimbula (02) 6495 1134 Island Charters, Narooma (02) 4476 1047 or 0408 428 857 K9 Fishing Charters, Merimbula (02) 6495 1681 Merimbula Marina, Merimbula (02) 6495 1686 or 0427 951 080 Narooma Charters, Narooma 0407 909 111 CENTRAL

O’Brien Charter Service, Bermagui 0407 214 124


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South-West Fishing Charters, Portland 0418 306 714 Gone Fishing Charters 0409 007 068 Able Fishing & Charters, Williamstown (03) 9502 3777 ACE Fishing Charters, Bonbeach (03) 9773 4183 Adamas Fishing Charters, Barwon Heads (03) 5254 3320 Big Red Fishing Charters, Queenscliff 1800 805 587 Blue Magic Fishing Charters, Rowville (03) 9759 5301 Calypso Fishing Charters, Tootgarook (03) 5985 8463 Geelong Charters & Fishing Trips, Geelong (03) 5275 7107 Katrina Louise Charters, Cheltenham 0402 828 140 Kestrel Charters, Queenscliff (03) 5258 1783 Queenscliff Fishing Charters, Queenscliff 0458 504 058 Pro Red Fishing Charters 0421 442 775 Rip Charters Fishing Trips, Sorrento (03) 5984 3664 Saltwater Charters, Queenscliff (03) 5258 4888

Wilderness Fishing Tours, Mallacoota 0424 625 160 Aussie Fish Estuary Adventures (02) 6495 9902 or 0400 062 504

Intelli-Start 12V Lithium Emergency Jumpstarter

Portable Fish Finder Camera







Limited stocks available



Series 3 through 9








SNAPPER Specialists

0419 554 916

Off The Hook Fishing Charters 0419 554 916 St Kilda Fishing Charters, St Kilda (03) 9770 2200 Western Port Fishing Charters, Hastings (03) 9769 5544


$9.95 each GST INC. - with FREE P&H

1800 228 244 This is where your copy will appear. You will have approximately 30 words within a 5x2 ad size.


TASMANIA & FLINDERS ISLAND Ausprey Tours, Launceston (03) 6630 2612 Gone Fishing Charters, St Helens (03) 6376 1553 Fish Wild Tasmania, Hobart 0418 348 223 Flinders Island Adventures, Flinders Island (03) 6359 4507 Trout Territory, Northern Midlands (03) 6397 5001





Capella III Fishing Adventures, Port Welshpool (03) 5688 1585 Far Out Charters, McLoughlins Beach 0428 401 819 Prom Coastal Charters, Yanakie (03) 5687 1248 or 0429 935 583 Razorback Bluewater Charters, Port Albert (03) 5183 2691

Angling Expeditions Victoria, Tawonga (03) 5754 1466 Highland Trout Lakes, Ballarat (03) 5368 9574 Millbrook Lakes Lodge, Ballarat (03) 5334 0404

White, Black, Navy, Red, Green, Orange or Grey

Email :




CHANDLERY & ACCESSORIES Anchor Right (03) 5968 5014 Techni Ice (03) 9783 1922

Advertisers wanting to be involved in this directory can call (07) 3387 0800 or email



Victorian Tide Times

2016 2016 Local Time



Time 0451 1152 0451 1727 1152 2351 1727 2351 0552 1245 0552 1826 1245 1826

m 0.45 1.47 0.45 0.70 1.47 1.39 0.70 1.39 0.43 1.52 0.43 0.61 1.52 0.61

33 0049 0644 0049 1330 SA 0644

1.45 0.42 1.45 1.55 0.42 0.52 1.55 0.52 1.50 0.42 1.50 1.57 0.42 0.46 1.57 0.46 1.53 0.43 1.53 1.57 0.43 0.41 1.57 0.41 1.54 0.46 1.54 1.56 0.46 0.38 1.56 0.38 1.54 0.49 1.54 1.54 0.49 0.37 1.54 0.37 1.52 0.53 1.52 1.51 0.53 0.37 1.51 0.37 1.49 0.57 1.49 1.48 0.57 0.38 1.48 0.38 1.45 0.63 1.45 1.43 0.63 0.40 1.43 0.40 1.41 0.68 1.41 1.37 0.68 1.37



22 FR FR

1914 SA 1330 1914 0141 0729 0141 1409 SU 0729 1956 SU 1409 1956 0225 0808 0225 1442 MO 0808 2034 MO 1442 2034 0303 0845 0303 1513 TU 0845 2109 TU 1513 2109 0339 0919 0339 1543 WE 0919 2144 WE 1543 2144 0413 0954 0413 1614 TH 0954 2217 TH 1614 2217 0447 1029 0447 1646 FR 1029 2251 FR 1646 2251 0526 1105 0526 1721 SA 1105 2326 SA 1721 2326 0609 1142 0609 1800 SU 1142 SU 1800

44 55 66

77 88


10 10 11 11

0000 12 0658 0000 12 1221 MO 0658 1845 MO 1221 1845 0041 0755 0041 1307 TU 0755 1940 TU 1307 1940 0130 0900 0130 1405 WE 0900 2045 WE 1405 2045 0231 1005 0231 1516 TH 1005 2201 TH 1516 2201

13 13 14 14

15 15

0.43 1.36 0.43 0.74 1.36 1.32 0.74 1.32 0.46 1.33 0.46 0.79 1.33 1.27 0.79 1.27 0.50 1.31 0.50 0.82 1.31 1.25 0.82 1.25 0.52 1.33 0.52 0.80 1.33 1.27 0.80 1.27

LAT 18’ of High LONG 144° Times and38° Heights and Low37’ Waters Times and Heights of High and Low Waters NOVEMBER OCTOBER m Time Time m Time OCTOBER m TimeNOVEMBER m

Time 0344 1108 0344 1630 1108 2315 1630 2315 0459 1203 0459 1736 1203 1736

m 0.52 1.38 0.52 0.71 1.38 1.34 0.71 1.34 0.49 1.45 0.49 0.59 1.45 0.59

0019 18 0601 0019 18 1253 SU 0601

1.45 0.44 1.45 1.53 0.44 0.45 1.53 0.45 1.57 0.41 1.57 1.58 0.41 0.33 1.58 0.33 1.65 0.40 1.65 1.62 0.40 0.23 1.62 0.23 1.70 0.40 1.70 1.63 0.40 0.17 1.63 0.17 1.71 0.43 1.71 1.61 0.43 0.15 1.61 0.15 1.67 0.47 1.67 1.57 0.47 0.18 1.57 0.18 1.61 0.52 1.61 1.51 0.52 0.23 1.51 0.23 1.53 0.58 1.53 1.44 0.58 1.44

16 16 FR FR

17 17 SA SA

1830 SU 1253 1830 0115 0656 0115 1338 MO 0656 1919 MO 1338 1919 0207 0745 0207 1421 TU 0745 2006 TU 1421 2006 0256 0830 0256 1503 WE 0830 2054 WE 1503 2054 0344 0916 0344 1544 TH 0916 2141 TH 1544 2141 0431 1002 0431 1626 FR 1002 2228 FR 1626 2228 0522 1047 0522 1711 SA 1047 2315 SA 1711 2315 0616 1133 0616 1800 SU 1133 SU 1800

19 19 20 20

21 21 22 22 23 23

24 24 25 25

0003 26 0716 0003 26 1223 MO 0716 1900 MO 1223 1900 0056 0820 0056 1321 TU 0820 2012 TU 1321 2012 0200 0923 0200 1435 WE 0923 2129 WE 1435 2129 0315 1024 0315 1558 TH 1024 2239 TH 1558 2239 0430 1121 0430 1707 FR 1121 2344 FR 1707 2344

27 27 28 28

29 29 30 30

0.31 1.45 0.31 0.64 1.45 1.36 0.64 1.36 0.40 1.39 0.40 0.69 1.39 1.30 0.69 1.30 0.49 1.36 0.49 0.71 1.36 1.28 0.71 1.28 0.54 1.36 0.54 0.68 1.36 1.31 0.68 1.31 0.55 1.38 0.55 0.60 1.38 1.37 0.60 1.37

Time 0524 1222 0524 1759 SU 1222 SU 1759

m 0.58 1.40 0.58 0.45 1.40 0.45

1.44 0.52 1.44 1.45 0.52 0.44 1.45 0.44 1.51 0.50 1.51 1.47 0.50 0.37 1.47 0.37 1.56 0.49 1.56 1.48 0.49 0.33 1.48 0.33 1.59 0.50 1.59 1.49 0.50 0.31 1.49 0.31 1.59 0.51 1.59 1.48 0.51 0.30 1.48 0.30 1.59 0.52 1.59 1.46 0.52 0.31 1.46 0.31 1.56 0.55 1.56 1.43 0.55 0.34 1.43 0.34 1.52 0.59 1.52 1.39 0.59 0.37 1.39 0.37 1.47 0.63 1.47 1.33 0.63 1.33

0102 17 0637 0102 17 1316 MO 0637

1.51 0.54 1.51 1.46 0.54 0.31 1.46 0.31 1.64 0.50 1.64 1.52 0.50 0.19 1.52 0.19 1.73 0.47 1.73 1.57 0.47 0.12 1.57 0.12 1.78 0.45 1.78 1.58 0.45 0.09 1.58 0.09 1.78 0.45 1.78 1.57 0.45 0.10 1.57 0.10 1.73 0.46 1.73 1.53 0.46 0.16 1.53 0.16 1.65 0.49 1.65 1.47 0.49 0.25 1.47 0.25 1.56 0.53 1.56 1.39 0.53 1.39

0.40 1.41 0.40 0.67 1.41 1.28 0.67 1.28 0.45 1.36 0.45 0.70 1.36 1.25 0.70 1.25 0.50 1.32 0.50 0.70 1.32 1.24 0.70 1.24 0.55 1.32 0.55 0.67 1.32 1.28 0.67 1.28 0.58 1.35 0.58 0.58 1.35 1.38 0.58 1.38

26 26

Time 0534 1213 0534 1802 SA 1213 SA 1802

m 0.54 1.41 0.54 0.52 1.41 0.52

22 0039 0726 0039 1356 SU 0726


1947 SU 1356 1947 0226 0809 0226 1433 MO 0809 2026 MO 1433 2026 0306 0846 0306 1505 TU 0846 2101 TU 1505 2101 0341 0921 0341 1537 WE 0921 2135 WE 1537 2135 0413 0956 0413 1608 TH 0956 2209 TH 1608 2209 0445 1030 0445 1642 FR 1030 2243 FR 1642 2243 0518 1104 0518 1715 SA 1104 2315 SA 1715 2315 0555 1139 0555 1752 SU 1139 2347 SU 1752 2347 0635 1215 0635 1831 MO 1215 MO 1831

33 44

55 66 77



10 10

0020 11 0720 0020 11 1251 TU 0720

1916 TU 1251 1916 0059 0813 0059 1334 WE 0813 2012 WE 1334 2012 0147 0912 0147 1429 TH 0912 2121 TH 1429 2121 0249 1017 0249 1536 FR 1017 2241 FR 1536 2241 0404 1122 0404 1650 SA 1122 2357 SA 1650 2357

12 12 13 13

14 14 15 15

16 16

1858 MO 1316 1858 0200 0735 0200 1406 TU 0735 1950 TU 1406 1950 0252 0826 0252 1453 WE 0826 2041 WE 1453 2041 0342 0914 0342 1538 TH 0914 2130 TH 1538 2130 0430 1000 0430 1622 FR 1000 2218 FR 1622 2218 0517 1045 0517 1707 SA 1045 2306 SA 1707 2306 0605 1131 0605 1755 SU 1131 2354 SU 1755 2354 0657 1219 0657 1847 MO 1219 MO 1847

18 18

19 19 20 20 21 21

22 22 23 23 24 24

0042 25 0752 0042 25 1309 TU 0752

1950 TU 1309 1950 0132 0850 0132 1407 WE 0850 2105 WE 1407 2105 0230 0948 0230 1516 TH 0948 2219 TH 1516 2219 0340 1045 0340 1631 FR 1045 2327 FR 1631 2327 0457 1141 0457 1737 SA 1141 SA 1737

27 27 28 28

29 29

0029 30 0606 0029 30 1231 SU 0606

1830 SU 1231 1830 0122 0701 0122 1315 MO 0701 1915 MO 1315 1915

31 31

0.35 1.47 0.35 0.57 1.47 1.32 0.57 1.32 0.46 1.39 0.46 0.61 1.39 1.27 0.61 1.27 0.56 1.34 0.56 0.62 1.34 1.26 0.62 1.26 0.64 1.32 0.64 0.59 1.32 1.30 0.59 1.30 0.68 1.31 0.68 0.53 1.31 0.53 1.37 0.67 1.37 1.33 0.67 0.46 1.33 0.46 1.45 0.64 1.45 1.35 0.64 0.39 1.35 0.39

Time 0206 0745 0206 1354 0745 1953 1354 1953 0244 0823 0244 1430 0823 2030 1430 2030 0316 0859 0316 1504 0859 2104 1504 2104 0348 0933 0348 1539 0933 2139 1539 2139 0421 1008 0421 1615 1008 2211 1615 2211 0455 1043 0455 1651 1043 2243 1651 2243 0531 1116 0531 1729 1116 2314 1729 2314 0610 1151 0610 1809 1151 2347 1809 2347 0651 1228 0651 1856 1228 1856

m 1.52 0.61 1.52 1.38 0.61 0.33 1.38 0.33 1.58 0.58 1.58 1.41 0.58 0.29 1.41 0.29 1.62 0.56 1.62 1.43 0.56 0.27 1.43 0.27 1.64 0.55 1.64 1.43 0.55 0.27 1.43 0.27 1.64 0.54 1.64 1.42 0.54 0.29 1.42 0.29 1.62 0.55 1.62 1.40 0.55 0.32 1.40 0.32 1.58 0.57 1.58 1.36 0.57 0.35 1.36 0.35 1.53 0.59 1.53 1.32 0.59 0.39 1.32 0.39 1.47 0.60 1.47 1.28 0.60 1.28

0028 10 0738 0028 10 1310 TH 0738

0.45 1.42 0.45 0.59 1.42 1.26 0.59 1.26 0.52 1.37 0.52 0.58 1.37 1.26 0.58 1.26 0.59 1.34 0.59 0.53 1.34 1.32 0.53 1.32 0.66 1.34 0.66 0.45 1.34 1.42 0.45 1.42 0.68 1.37 0.68 0.34 1.37 0.34















88 TU TU

99 WE WE

1951 TH 1310 1951 0117 0830 0117 1400 FR 0830 2101 FR 1400 2101 0218 0930 0218 1503 SA 0930 2221 SA 1503 2221 0331 1034 0331 1614 SU 1034 2337 SU 1614 2337 0451 1139 0451 1725 MO 1139 MO 1725

11 11

12 12

13 13 14 14

0043 15 0609 0043 15 1239 TU 0609

1.55 0.66 1.55 1.42 0.66 1829 1.42 0.22 TU 1239 1829 0.22

16 16 WE WE

17 17 TH TH

18 18 FR FR

19 19 SA SA

20 20 SU SU

21 21 MO MO

22 22 TU TU

Time 0142 0713 0142 1335 0713 1926 1335 1926 0236 0806 0236 1427 0806 2018 1427 2018 0327 0856 0327 1515 0856 2109 1515 2109 0415 0944 0415 1603 0944 2159 1603 2159 0501 1031 0501 1651 1031 2246 1651 2246 0548 1118 0548 1741 1118 2333 1741 2333 0635 1206 0635 1834 1206 1834

0019 23 0723 0019 23 1256 WE 0723

1938 WE 1256 1938 0106 0813 0106 1348 TH 0813 2050 TH 1348 2050 0157 0904 0157 1446 FR 0904 2159 FR 1446 2159 0255 0956 0255 1551 SA 0956 2302 SA 1551 2302 0405 1048 0405 1655 SU 1048 SU 1655

24 24

25 25 26 26

27 27

0002 28 0520 0002 28 1140 MO 0520 1751 MO 1140 1751 0055 0625 0055 1229 TU 0625 1839 TU 1229 1839 0140 0715 0140 1313 WE 0715 1921 WE 1313 1921

29 29

30 30

m m 1.68 0.61 1.68 1.48 0.61 0.13 1.48 0.13 1.76 0.55 1.76 1.52 0.55 0.08 1.52 0.08 1.81 0.51 1.81 1.54 0.51 0.07 1.54 0.07 1.80 0.48 1.80 1.54 0.48 0.11 1.54 0.11 1.75 0.46 1.75 1.50 0.46 0.18 1.50 0.18 1.68 0.46 1.68 1.45 0.46 0.28 1.45 0.28 1.59 0.48 1.59 1.38 0.48 1.38 0.39 1.51 0.39 0.50 1.51 1.31 0.50 1.31 0.50 1.43 0.50 0.52 1.43 1.27 0.52 1.27 0.61 1.36 0.61 0.54 1.36 1.26 0.54 1.26 0.70 1.31 0.70 0.53 1.31 1.29 0.53 1.29 0.77 1.28 0.77 0.49 1.28 0.49 1.35 0.78 1.35 1.27 0.78 0.44 1.27 0.44 1.43 0.76 1.43 1.28 0.76 0.38 1.28 0.38 1.50 0.72 1.50 1.31 0.72 0.33 1.31 0.33


Time 0217 0757 0217 1355 0757 2000 1355 2000 0252 0835 0252 1434 0835 2037 1434 2037 0327 0912 0327 1514 0912 2112 1514 2112 0400 0947 0400 1552 0947 2145 1552 2145 0436 1023 0436 1631 1023 2217 1631 2217 0513 1058 0513 1711 1058 2250 1711 2250 0549 1133 0549 1752 1133 2327 1752 2327 0628 1211 0628 1839 1211 1839

m 1.56 0.67 1.56 1.34 0.67 0.29 1.34 0.29 1.61 0.63 1.61 1.37 0.63 0.27 1.37 0.27 1.64 0.60 1.64 1.39 0.60 0.26 1.39 0.26 1.65 0.57 1.65 1.40 0.57 0.28 1.40 0.28 1.65 0.55 1.65 1.39 0.55 0.30 1.39 0.30 1.62 0.54 1.62 1.36 0.54 0.33 1.36 0.33 1.58 0.52 1.58 1.34 0.52 0.38 1.34 0.38 1.53 0.50 1.53 1.32 0.50 1.32

99 0010 0710 0010 1252 FR 0710

0.45 1.48 0.45 0.48 1.48 1.31 0.48 1.31 0.53 1.43 0.53 0.44 1.43 1.31 0.44 1.31 0.63 1.39 0.63 0.40 1.39 1.36 0.40 1.36 0.71 1.36 0.71 0.34 1.36 1.44 0.34 1.44 0.75 1.36 0.75 0.27 1.36 0.27

24 24

1.54 0.74 1.54 1.39 0.74 0.19 1.39 0.19 1.64 0.69 1.64 1.43 0.69 0.13 1.43 0.13

29 29















88 TH TH

1935 FR 1252 1935 0100 0756 0100 1341 SA 0756 2043 SA 1341 2043 0157 0850 0157 1438 SU 0850 2200 SU 1438 2200 0303 0951 0303 1544 MO 0951 2315 MO 1544 2315 0419 1057 0419 1655 TU 1057 TU 1655

10 10

11 11 12 12

13 13

0023 14 0539 0023 14 1204 WE 0539

1804 WE 1204 1804 0124 0648 0124 1307 TH 0648 1906 TH 1307 1906

15 15

 Copyright Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Bureau of Meteorology  Copyright Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Bureau of Meteorology Datum of Predictions is Lowest Astronomical Tide Datum of Predictions is Lowest Astronomical Tide Times are in local standard time (UTC +10:00) or daylight savings time (UTC +11:00) when in effect Times are in local standard time (UTC +10:00) or daylight when in effect New Moon Firstsavings Quartertime (UTC +11:00) Moon Phase Symbols Full Moon New Moon First Quarter Moon Phase Symbols Full Moon

16 16 FR FR

17 17 SA SA

18 18 SU SU

19 19 MO MO

20 20 TU TU

21 21 WE WE

22 22 TH TH

Time 0219 0747 0219 1405 0747 2001 1405 2001 0312 0841 0312 1458 0841 2054 1458 2054 0400 0931 0400 1548 0931 2144 1548 2144 0446 1020 0446 1638 1020 2230 1638 2230 0530 1108 0530 1728 1108 2315 1728 2315 0611 1154 0611 1820 1154 2358 1820 2358 0651 1238 0651 1918 1238 1918

0040 23 0730 0040 23 1323 FR 0730

2020 FR 1323 2020 0123 0812 0123 1409 SA 0812 2121 SA 1409 2121 0211 0856 0211 1500 SU 0856 2221 SU 1500 2221 0307 0945 0307 1559 MO 0945 2320 MO 1559 2320 0416 1039 0416 1700 TU 1039 TU 1700

25 25 26 26

27 27

0015 28 0531 0015 28 1136 WE 0531 1759 WE 1136 1759 0105 0636 0105 1230 TH 0636 1848 TH 1230 1848 0148 0727 0148 1321 FR 0727 1933 FR 1321 1933 0228 0810 0228 1408 SA 0810 2013 SA 1408 2013

30 30

31 31

m m 1.72 0.62 1.72 1.48 0.62 0.10 1.48 0.10 1.76 0.55 1.76 1.51 0.55 0.10 1.51 0.10 1.77 0.49 1.77 1.51 0.49 0.15 1.51 0.15 1.74 0.45 1.74 1.49 0.45 0.22 1.49 0.22 1.68 0.42 1.68 1.44 0.42 0.31 1.44 0.31 1.61 0.41 1.61 1.38 0.41 0.41 1.38 0.41 1.54 0.42 1.54 1.32 0.42 1.32 0.51 1.46 0.51 0.44 1.46 1.28 0.44 1.28 0.61 1.38 0.61 0.45 1.38 1.26 0.45 1.26 0.71 1.32 0.71 0.46 1.32 1.27 0.46 1.27 0.79 1.27 0.79 0.46 1.27 1.30 0.46 1.30 0.84 1.24 0.84 0.44 1.24 0.44 1.36 0.84 1.36 1.23 0.84 0.40 1.23 0.40 1.42 0.80 1.42 1.25 0.80 0.35 1.25 0.35 1.49 0.75 1.49 1.29 0.75 0.31 1.29 0.31 1.55 0.68 1.55 1.33 0.68 0.28 1.33 0.28

Last Quarter Last Quarter

Tide predictions for Port Phillip Heads have been formatted by the National Tidal Centre, Australian Bureau of Meteorology, Copyright reserved. All material is supplied in good faith and is believed to be correct. It is supplied on the condition that no warranty is given in relation thereto, that no responsibility or liability for errors or omissions is, or will be, accepted and that the recipient will hold MHL and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology Australia free from all such responsibility or liability and from all loss or damage incurred as a consequence of any error or omission. Predictions should not be used for navigational purposes. Use of these tide predictions will be deemed to include acceptance of the above conditions. 102



CW 1650


STANDARD WITH: • Yamaha F70 4 Stroke • Mackay Single Axle Trailer • Garmin 4.5 GPS/FF • Front & Side Clears • Bimini Top • S/S Bait Board • Moulded Boarding Platforms • S/S Boarding Ladder • Two Tone Hull Gelcoat • S/S Bow Roller • Rubber Flooring Throughout • S/S Bow Rails • Safety Kit With Inflatable Jackets • Fenders & Ropes • Black Sports Dash • Side Pocket Storage • Bilge Pump

• Removable Rear Seats • Front Cabin Cushions • Side Pocket Storage • Front Cabin Window • Registrations Hull & Trailer • On Water Hand Over • Fulton Jockey Wheel • Fulton Front & Rear Deluxe Straps • Rubber Fender Strip Gunnel • Battery & Isolator Switch • LED Navigation & Anchor Lights • Foam Filled Hull • Sports Decal Kit • 5 Year Limited Warranty On Hull • 2 X S/S Cleats • 2 X S/S Rod Holders • Walk Through Screen • Fibreglass Encapsulated Stringer System









SAVE UP TO $1,250 ON THE 2.5 – 115HP FOURSTROKE RANGE And low finance deals available

Get in to your nearest participating Mercury dealer to take advantage of these amazing deals and start living the Mercury Life today.

HURRY OFFER ENDS 25TH NOV, 2016 *Terms & conditions apply. Savings are based on RRP including recommended Rigging Kits and subject to change without notice. Prices exclude local freight charges, fit up and local statutory charges. Offer available on selected new consumer FourStroke outboards from 2.5 to 115hp FourStroke purchased from participating dealers till 25th November 2016. Ask your participating Mercury dealer for full list of models in the program. Offer is subject to availability and engines must be 2014 build onwards and installed and registered by no later than 3rd Feb, 2017. Offer not to be used in conjunction with any other offer or rebates.

Victoria-Tasmania Fishing Monthly November 2016  
Victoria-Tasmania Fishing Monthly November 2016