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Recfishwest
Fishing Report
23/11/18
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Welcome to Recfishwest's weekly fishing report, brought to you by you by Recfishwest's fishing expert Joachim Azzopardi and thanks to John Curtis for his Mandurah and surrounds report, Peter Fullarton for what's happening in Lancelin and Nicholas Drummond with how to catch Yellowfin whiting surface lures.

Pic of the Week!

Picture of the week goes to Drew Clowes snapping this shot of Steve Hart with this quality yellowfin whiting caught on a stick bait worked across the flats.

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Broome Catches
Ben Lye with this beautiful early morning Barramundi, what a magic morning to be fishing.


Boats

Barramundi enthusiasts have been catching great numbers of barramundi on both lures and bait along the Fitzroy River. Smaller numbers of barramundi have been coming from the local creeks together with threadfin and bluenose salmon. Tripletail can be found near the moorings and other flotsam within Roebuck Bay. School mackerel and longtail tuna are evident offshore. The deeper areas of the bay have been producing mulloway, especially late afternoon and evening.

Shore based

Fresh baits presented from the banks of the local creeks have been producing barramundi as well as mangrove jack, estuary cod, bluenose and the odd threadfin salmon. Whiting have been caught in very good numbers at Entrance Point, which has also been producing queenfish and small trevally. Bigger queenies and trevally have been turning up at the jetty. Try Gantheaume Point for mackerel, fingermark bream and bluebone.
Exmouth Catches
While on a guide with Exmouth Fly Fishing, Rein Bijsterveld caught this superb cobia, what a great looking fish. 

Boats

Sailfish are still being encountered in the upper areas of the gulf in good numbers while marlin are present off the west coast. Solitary wahoo and packs of dolphinfish are evident out wide and there are still good numbers of Spanish mackerel within a few hundred metres of the west coast reef. The bombies inside the lagoon are holding some nice size spangled emperor. Bigger spanglies as well as red emperor, coral trout and rankin cod are being picked up in 60m to 80m off the Muiron Islands and south of Tantabiddi.

Shore based

VLF Bay and Bundegi Beach have been fishing well for queenfish and trevally during an incoming tide. Nearby Oysters is worth a try for giant trevally late afternoon and night. Spangled emperor and bluebone can be targeted near the lighthouse. Dart and small threadfin salmon are common along the west coast beaches. Try Bay of Rest for giant herring and big queenfish. Learmonth Jetty and the marina are producing big numbers of squid during the rising tide and darker hours.
Kalbarri Catches
Kalbarri Land based fishing tours putting his client onto this great mulloway.


Boats

Spanish mackerel are starting to be encountered through the waters north of town together with mack and longtail tuna. Expect mackerel and tuna numbers to increase as the warmer months progress. Rock lobster are being caught by divers and those working pots, however many seem to be have tar spot or are berried . Try the bay at Jakes for yellowfin whiting. 

Shore based

Tailor to 60cm have been appearing most mornings and evenings at Wittecarra Creek and Red Bluff together with school mulloway and herring. Bigger mulloway have been turning up at Frustrations as well as the beaches north of there. There are still plenty of big yellowfin whiting being caught along the sand flats of the Murchison River. A one-metre mulloway was landed at the jetty last Friday evening. Black bream of 41cm and 40cm were caught on Saturday morning during the local tournament. Blue manna and mud crab catches are increasing in the system.
Geraldton Catches


Boats

Increasing numbers of sport fishers are working the waters west of Pensioner Bank for Spanish and school mackerel and varieties of tuna. Unfortunately both the mackerel and tuna are yet to appear in numbers while water temperatures remain a low 20C. Expect action on this front to increase once water temperatures rise between 23C and 24C. Dinghy and small boat fishers have been doing well on squid, whiting and herring within the inshore areas around reefs.

Shore based

Tailor have been appearing some mornings along the Flat Rocks to Greenough River mouth stretch together with mulloway. The first and second points at Greenough are producing herring and pike in addition to tailor. Bigger tailor have been coming from Tarcoola Beach and Southgates early morning an evening. Herring and pike have also been common in both areas. The reefs north and south of Drummond's Cove are producing mixed catches of tailor, herring, pike and whiting.
Lancelin Catches

Boats

More people have started putting their lobster pots in the water in expectation of the upcoming whites cray run. There have been a few starting to turn up in pots with the main run expected to start around the end of the month. There have been plenty of King George whiting caught in the bay and better numbers of squid. Bluefin tuna are still around inshore and they are feeding better early morning, where later in the day the schools can be hard to find and you will need to head further offshore to find some.

Shore based

The run up to the full moon has made for some great beach fishing for mulloway and tailor as they have been biting well on into the morning and the fish have been firing up early in the afternoon. There are still some very good size tailor over 70cm being caught from the beaches. Fishers have been landing herring from most areas, but any decent size sand whiting have been very hard to find. The jetty has fished very well this week with much better numbers of squid and King George whiting along with the usual tailor, herring and pike.
Esperance Catches
Tom Tate from Tatey's tackleworld caught this King George during an after school fishing session. 

Boats

Yellowtail kingfish to an impressive 15kg have been caught and landed on stick baits and poppers worked near the offshore bombies. Kings to 20kg and bigger have been spotted following hooked fish and within burley trails. Pink snapper to 6kg have been found within the bay, which is also fishing well for squid and herring. Nannygai are mostly being found in 50m to 60m of water.

Shore based

Mixed catches of bread and butter species including herring, skippy and squid are on offer at the Taylor Street Jetty while Bandy Creek boat harbour has mostly sand whiting and herring. Mulloway have been turning up at Fourteen Mile and Nine Mile. Salmon appeared in fair sized schools at Roses Beach last week. Salmon Beach had smaller numbers of salmon as well as plenty of herring. Lucky Bay is worth a visit considering squid and herring have been picked up in big sizes and numbers at the rocks in addition to the odd salmon also turning up. Woody Island Jetty has been producing good catches of squid, herring and gummy shark.
Albany Catches
Brodie from Westside Fishing with a solid Samson in front of the granite boulders of the south coast.

Boats

King George whiting are certainly about the inshore areas, however at times, the popular table fish have been patchy and difficult to find a good school for many fishers. King George fishers working the waters off Limestone Head have been getting among bigger fish between 40cm and 50cm. Griffiths Street has also been producing some nice catches in the 30s while Emu Point, the waters off Gull Rock and near Michaelmas and Breaksea islands have been yielding bags of mixed sizes. Squid seem to be getting caught in bigger numbers during the late afternoons during an incoming tide. Herring are still a little light on for this time of the year considering November is when the bread and butter species tend to turn up in big schools. Some seasoned fishers seem to think the seasons are about a month out, and if this is so the case, expect the herring to move in during December in their masses. Not too many ventured to the coral to target quality reef fish this week. The few who did, managed to find a few dhufish and breaksea cod as well as queen, pink and red snapper in 60m to 90m.

Shore based

Surf fishers have mostly been picking up small herring, tarwhine and juvenile salmon. The rocks near West Cape Howe and towards Bremer Bay should have samson fish and yellowtail kingfish in numbers soon. The marina and Frenchman Bay have squid, leatherjackets and black bream. Fresh baits should increase the chances of catching a mulloway in the King and Kalgan rivers. The Pallinup River is reportedly fishing well for bigger black bream while water levels of Devils creek in Bremer are still very low.
Southwest Catches
Oliver Heslewood caught this great squid while fishing from the Busselton jetty. Well done mate!


Boats

Very few are venturing far offshore because of the demersal ban. Squid are still in reasonable numbers along the seagrass meadows within Geographe Bay. King George whiting have been found in depths ranging from 5m to 18m of water extending from Eagle Bay to Siesta Park. Rock lobster catches should increase for those working pots and divers during the remaining weeks of the year.

Shore based

School and yellowfin whiting have started to turn up along the Quindalup sand flats in bigger numbers following a slight increase in water temperatures within Geographe Bay. The whiting have been caught on small stick baits and soft plastics at times as well as baits. A consistent stream of burley introduced at any of the headlands should bring herring, skippy and tarwhine to an area. Tailor have been appearing some evenings at Elmore Road. Try Injidup and Moses Rock for tailor late afternoon and evening. Blue swimmer crab catches have dwindled.
Mandurah and Surrounds


Mandurah

The Cut is continuing to be a great place to get a feed, with some big herring and some tailor being caught. Several larger skippy have been landed from the rock walls during the last week. The area between the bridges has been producing some reasonable catches of whiting and herring and there have also been reports of a tailor, herring and whiting showing up at the Traffic Bridge. Fishers within the estuary have been catching some good tailor. Black bream have been caught in the Murray and the Serpentine. The beaches to the south of the town continue to produce some good fishing with tailor to 50 cm, herring, skippy and some fair sized mulloway. Fish in the 4 - 5 kg class are being caught early morning and late evening. Further south in the area around Preston has been affected by currents and has become quite shallow. The weed has gone but water depth is too shallow to produce good fishing. Beaches to the north of Mandurah are producing tailor, herring and whiting with an occasional skippy. Mulloway up to 6 kg have been reported from several of these beaches. Catch rates for this fish should improve over the next few weeks but patience is a must in hooking, playing and landing them. Fishers in the estuary have been using small poppers and stick baits to catch yellowfin whiting to 35 cm and herring. There are also reports of a giant herring being caught on lure. This form of fishing has been better when the wind has been light and enables fishers to make long casts to fish.
 

SECRET HARBOUR / PORT KENNEDY / WARNBRO / ROCKINGHAM / SAFETY BAY

Tailor are being caught from the surf beaches of an afternoon when the breeze comes in and puts a chop on the water. There are still reports of herring being caught from the local beaches in the morning. Fishers on the sand flats between the mainland and Penguin Island report a few small whiting as well as occasional flathead and some skippy.
At the jetties there are herring, squid and the odd small mulloway being caught late at night. The beaches around Port Kennedy and Secret Harbour have been producing yellowfin whiting on a regular basis. Tailor are becoming more regular in and around the Rockingham / Safety Bay area.
Perth Catches
Many fishers are starting to soak pots eagerly awaiting the 'whites run' to begin. Picture credit Steve Hart.

Boats

Private and charter boats have been getting among good numbers of samson fish ranging from 15kg to 40kg at The Barges in 90m to 110m of water off West End. Yellowtail kingfish have been found along the southern and northern parts of Rottnest Island and Stragglers. There are big King George whiting in depths leading up to 30m off Parker Point and near The Windmills. Smaller King George have been picked up along Parmelia Bank. Squid have also been caught near The Windmills as well as the seagrass areas between Fremantle and Garden Island. Yellowfin tuna to 10kg have been found off Hillarys while small southern bluefin tuna are mostly being located wide of Five Fathom Bank.

Shore based

Tailor have been appearing in bigger numbers along the beaches just to the north of the metropolitan area. The 40cm to 50cm tailor have mostly been appearing in the evenings, however in saying that, there are still similar size fish being caught during the hour or so after first light. Herring are still present at the beaches that feature reef as well as at the northern and southern rock walls. The Fremantle rock walls have squid in addition to herring and other varieties of bread and butter species. The lower and middle reaches of the Swan and Canning rivers have tailor, flathead and giant herring being caught in bigger numbers. Expect mulloway to be found in the deeper areas of both systems during the fuller moon periods during summer.

Yellowfin Whiting Flats Fishing

A great yellowfin whiting caught on a surface lure.

Yellowfin whiting on surface lures is some of the most exciting and accessible fishing around.

 
A hot summers day spent yellowfin whiting fishing on the flats of estuaries, such as the Peel-Harvey, Leschenault and Swan river, can be a great escape from the heat and one of the activities that is not at the mercy of the afternoon sea breeze. Working small surface lures such as stick baits and poppers in the 45 to 70mm size range across the surface of the shallow flats can be some of the most exciting fishing, watching the yellowfin push each other out the way for your lure is invigorating. Working these lures across the surface with small twitches constantly to create a walk the dog action is the best way to get the whiting fired up. The walk the dog action is where the lure jumps from left to right zigzagging its way across the surface. When the whiting start to follow the lure, don't slow down or stop this action and continue to work the lure. They may miss a few times but you will eventually hook up and these whiting can be quite fun on light gear. Attaching stinger or assist hooks is a great way to increase hookups, cause less damage to the fish and are also easier to remove. A lightweight rod, around 7 ft paired with a 1000 - 2000 sized reel and 4 - 8 lb main line with a light 8 lb fluorocarbon leader will have you casting these lightweight lures far enough and helps to work the lure effectively. Walking or drifting across the flats is the best way of covering ground and finding a solid school of yellowfin whiting, sometimes you will even see their silver sides flashing light up as they search through the sand flats for a feed. This is a great activity to do with a mate and a great way to spend a hot summers day with your legs in the cool waters of the estuary. A handy tip is to drive up/walk into the direction the wind is coming from and drift/walk back with it across the flats casting with the wind. This helps you to be silent in your approach and cast further with the assistance of the wind.
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