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geelong, corio bay & beyond with geoff wilson
Geoff Wilson
Dated: 10 February, 2012
Bill Athanasslies of Live Now: Fish to the Max! with last Thursday's shark.

Bellarine Peninsula
Hoping for a shark in the early hours of Thursday morning, Bill Athanasslies sent a small tuna out from the Point Lonsdale Pier using a paravane, but it hadn’t gone very far before something hit the bait without hooking up.

Winding it back in, Bill found it to be still in good shape and sent it on its way once more; this time finding himself hooked to a behemoth that stripped hundreds of metres of line from his reel against a powerful drag.

Eventually though, Bill prevailed over his protagonist that turned out to be a three metre Bronze Whaler which should keep he and his neighbours in flake for some time.

Despite the late hour there were a number of folk on the pier at the time I arrived to photograph Bill’s Shark, one of whom had a barbeque going and obligingly cooked some of the shark for us.

Now, I was a bit wary of trying it because some of these big bronzies are a bit rank. Not this one though, it was fine: I guess it must have been feeding on crayfish.

With kingfish present at Port Phillip Heads last week, Matt Grgic – along with companions Robert and Ace – trolled strips of squid and whole garfish from early morning until the high tide change without so much as a touch.

Matt Grgic with his kingfish that was taken on a knife jig dropped over the Lonsdale wall.

With high slack water imminent, and a large knife jig in the tackle box, Matt decided it mightn’t be a bad idea to drop it over the back of the Lonsdale wall: A good move as it turned out for he hooked a kingfish of 7 kg.

They probably would have caught others had not the tide begun running out against the incoming swell, making for difficult sea conditions.

Last week Neil Pickering and his son Ben fished Swan Bay in search of a good size flathead or two. However their first move was to catch some garfish for bait which fortunately, were plentiful.

They caught two flathead on the gar, each measuring 55 cm, but there was more to come: As the tide began running off Ben’s screaming reel heralded the capture of a Gummy Shark that measured 104 cm.

Ben Pickering with his gummy shark.

Rod Ludlow at Beachlea boat hire at Indented Head reports that with the onshore winds we’ve had of late there hasn’t been a lot of demand for his services. However, those that have braved the elements said Rod have not had to go very far for some good size flathead to 45 cm or so.

Making an early start on Thursday morning Andrew Phillips and Geoff Vrahnas headed launched at St Leonards and fished the West Sands between the West and Coles Channels for whiting.

While a freshening sou-easter against ebb tide did not make for the most comfortable fishing conditions, they finished up with their combined bag limit of 40 whiting, which were taken on pipis and squid.

Western District
Last Tuesday evening, Doug Lucas fished Lake Purrumbete, where – trolling mudeyes behind a Ford Fender fish attractor – he caught four Rainbow Trout from 800 grams to 1.2 kg.

Doug, along with his son Tim, fished the Aire River estuary at Horden Vale on Sunday. Using shrimp for bait they caught thirteen legal size bream including a beauty of 43 cm: That was downstream near the mouth which had recently closed.

At Portland Bob McPherson reports that unsettled weather has kept a good many anglers ashore, but with shoals of Australian Salmon just outside the harbour entrance you don’t need to go very far to find some action.

Bob points out that there are good opportunities to catch fish inside the harbour as well, even without a boat and suggests trying the new pontoon adjacent the trawler wharf where a variety of fish including pinkie Snapper and whiting have been keeping anglers busy.

Another alternative said Bob is the Lee Breakwater which has been producing some really good size whiting for those fishing between the shoreline and the gate during the early morning and evening. While they’ve not been really plentiful, most are around the 700 gram mark so you don’t need that many for a respectable bag.

The number of emails I received after last week’s discourse on the servicing of lifejackets prompted further investigation into where lifejackets may be serviced: I found two such venues:

In Geelong I spoke with Roger at Four Winds Marine, 24 Bellerine Street, 03 5229 9200 who has accreditation for the professional servicing of leading brands of lifejackets, and facsimiles thereof, and who is prepared to advise on the subject.

In Melbourne I spoke with Natalie of Survival Offshore Systems, Unit 9/339 Williamstown Road, Port Melbourne 03 9646 5001 who offer the same comprehensive service including Solas and Commercial categories.

Paul asks:
I was told you’re more likely to catch trout on a light brown leader rather than a traditional fluorocarbon leader: Is this true?

Paul; evidence gathered over an extended period indicates that brown coloured lines often out-fish other lines and leaders, particularly when bait-fishing in freshwater. Suitable brown lines include Maxima Chameleon in monofilament and Berkley Fireline (smoke) in gelspun.

Geoff Wilson Fishnet Pro Angler
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Fishing reports may be sent by e-mail, or mail to Geoff Wilson:
PO Box 384,
Geelong 3220.

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