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Recfishwest
Fishing Report
21/08/20
Robbie Leck was having a relatively slow day off Kalbarri and prospecting a lot of ground without much success while fishing baits and jigs in 30m depths. However, that all changed when Robbie's rod doubled-over and he reeled in this cracking pink snapper! Proof that persistence pays off!
Dear <<First Name>>,

Welcome to WA's biggest and best weekly fishing reports!

In this report you'll read all about what's biting across the State brought to you by keen fishers Joachim Azzopardi, John Curtis, Peter Fullarton, and our valued tackle stores right across WA.

We've recently added in a couple of new features to make your fishing report even bigger and better with 'Scott's Spots' from renowned fishing writer and Western Angler editor Scott Coghlan taking a look at some of WA's best fishing locations and in the 'West Aussie Ultimate Angler' series we've teamed up with our partners Shimano to give you some of their experts' hot tips to take your fishing to the next level. We hope you enjoy this additional content.

For anyone wanting to contribute, photos reflecting Recfishwest's responsible fish handling practices will be preferred.

If you know someone who would love to receive these reports and needs some help on the fishing front, forward this onto them! Join us here.

Pic of the Week!

Anchored in 7m in Shark Bay with plenty of burley in the water, Halco managing director Ben Patrick was flicking a Madeye Paddle Prawn soft plastic through the burley trail when he picked up this magnificent mulloway. Terrific fish, Ben - it is a worthy winner of this week's 'Pic of the Week'!

Your fishing photos

If you want to see yourself or your kids feature in our next weekly State-wide Fishing Report, send your best fishing photos and a description to zach@recfishwest.org.au
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Young gun
Whether it was longtail tuna from the boat or queenfish off the beach, four-year-old Josh Mitchell caught plenty of quality fish while in Exmouth with his dad Ron. Terrific fishing, Josh - you're a star!
Broome Catches
Queeennnie! Tay was up and about after landing this queenfish while fishing with Makaira Game Fishing's Jeda Ellens during a session which also featured nice trevally and tuna varieties, too!

Boats

Sailfish seem to have moved to waters well north of town, after reports of very few encounters off Barred Creek. Spanish mackerel and other mackerel varieties have been turning up in a range of depths and areas of Broome. Fishers had to work hard in 30m to 40m of water for their bags of reef fish, including blue lined emperor, saddletail seaperch and red emperor. Bluebone and fingermark bream can be targeted within a few miles of the coast. However, they are being caught in better numbers in waters farther north and south of the town centre.

Shore based

Barramundi up to 80m have been caught in good numbers in the lower reaches of the Fitzroy River this week, with lures and baits working well. Barra catches are also increasing in the local creeks, alongside mangrove jack and estuary cod. The rocks at Gantheaume Point and the Broome Jetty are good spots to try for queenfish and trevally species. 
Exmouth Catches
Trent Ritchie christened his new boat in style on a recent adventure to Exmouth, catching a black marlin during his first session on the vessel. Fantastic stuff, Trent - hopefully it is the first of many!

Boats

The blue marlin season seems to have started a couple of months early, with crews encountering at least one blue in waters out wide each outing. Smaller black marlin are also about in closer to shore, while sailfish numbers are building in the upper areas of the Exmouth Gulf. Spanish mackerel can be targeted on minnows trolled behind the reef line. Poppers and stickbaits worked near the white water, close to the reef, are likely to get checked out by giant trevally, red bass or spangled emperor. Red emperor can be targeted in depths starting at 60m alongside Rankin cod and pearl perch.

Shore based

Spin and fly fishers are catching queenfish and small trevally varieties at the west coast accesses, while giant herring and blue bastards have been spotted on occasion in the gulf. Spangled emperor can be targeted near the lighthouse and Mildura Wreck. Whiting are reliable along the town and gulf beaches, while squid are being caught at Exmouth Marina and Learmonth Jetty, especially during an incoming tide or at night.
 

Scott’s Spots - Kununurra, a remote treasure in WA’s vast Kimberley

The Kimberley's Pentecost River is a popular barramundi spot. Credit: Moseying Around Australia

Kununurra is an amazing base to explore some other great Kimberley fishing locations. From the Keep River - near the Northern Territory border - to the Pentecost River, there are many idyllic spots to target barramundi. Read about Western Angler editor Scott Coghlan's Kununurra fishing experieces in the latest edition of Scott's Spots here!

 
Kalbarri Catches
With the winds blowing 30 knots off Kalbarri, Brody Ogle opted to wet a line in the Murchison River - and he wasn't disappointed! Brody was buzzing after he cast a lightly-weighted poddy mullet into the whitewater and scored this thumping tailor! Terrific fishing, mate.


Boats

Boats that fished ground south of town and near the cliffs caught big Rankin cod, pink snapper and baldchin groper. Spanish mackerel and golden trevally have also been encountered near the cliffs, however, they've been less prevalent compared to other species. Robbie Leck, pictured at the top of the report, enjoyed a nice session last week when he caught pink snapper, breaksea cod and Rankin cod.

Shore based

Tailor to an impressive 70cm are being caught at the Murchison River mouth and at Oyster Reef in the morning and at dusk. Smaller tailor, ranging from 40cm to 50cm, have been appearing at Wittecarra Creek and Red Bluff. Yellowfin whiting activity seems to be increasing along the shallower areas of the Murchison River, following reports of good catches measuring up to 30cm on baits this week. Black bream and mulloway have been caught on baits and lures near structure in the lower and upper reaches of the system.
Geraldton Catches


Boats

Pink snapper were found in big schools at South West Bank this week, alongside fair catches of dhufish, coral trout and baldchin groper. Those three sought-after species were also caught at African Reef and also along the western edge of Pensioners Bank. Dinghy and kayak fishers have been doing well on squid, herring and skippy within the inshore reefs.

Shore based

Fishers have had success chasing chopper tailor and school whiting in the somewhat protected waters of the back of the Breakwater. Bigger tailor, measuring up to 70cm, have been caught at the reef breaks close to town. Mulloway are occasionally being caught at Drummond Cove and the beaches south of Greenough.
Lancelin Catches


Boats

Boat fishers enjoyed some great weather this week, allowing vessels to safely leave the bay. There has been a lot of surface baitfish activity in the 20m to 25m depths off Lancelin, with pilchard and blue mackerel feeding on fry in the early morning which has attracted tuna schools. Dhufish, pink snapper and baldchin groper were landed by a number of boats fishing a wide range of depths, from 30m out to Direction Bank. The 20m to 22m depths have been producing plenty of sand whiting to 30cm.

Shore based

Tailor have not been found in big numbers from Lancelin's beaches, however, the size has been very good with fish measuring up to 50cm. The northern beaches have been the most productive for beach fishers chasing tailor. The jetty has been producing squid and some solid blue swimmer crabs. Earlier in the week, herring were caught in good numbers from the jetty under the lights at night. The bay's southern beaches fished well for tarwhine, skippy and pilch.
 

West Aussie Ultimate Angler Series

Spanish mackerel actively feed on the surface, making them an awesome species for fishers to target either from the boat or land-based, especially with lures. Picture: Perth Fishing Safaris

Mack attack! With their aggressive attitude, fighting qualities and superb eating, it's little wonder Spanish mackerel are such a popular sportfish here in Australia. WA is home to terrific Spaniard fishing, especially in the State's north, with many fishers chasing the hard-fighting pelagic species. Read Shimano's tips to catching Spanish mackerel here.

 
Esperance Catches


Boats

Dinghy and small boat fishers have been doing very well on big squid and plump sand whiting within the bay. Mixed catches of reef fish - including breaksea cod, Samson fish and nannygai - have been caught in the 20m depths. Bigger nannygai were caught in waters wide of the islands, when weather permitted.

Shore based

Big garfish and herring are being caught near the Port of Esperance, while Bandy Creek Boat Harbour is a good spot to try for King George whiting. Lots of salmon are being caught at Salmon Beach, Fourth Beach, Roses and Stockyards. Soft plastics are working well on black bream, measuring between 30cm and 40cm, at the local lakes.
Albany Catches
Albany fishing extraordinaire Gido Mettam has defied the odds again and hooked a blue groper on a stickbait! The Recfishwest Safety Ambassador, who caught a land-based dhufish on fly earlier this year, said he was stoked when the nice blue took the RedTank Lures Riot 90S. Awesome work!


Boats

Crews who travelled to the shelf, when the weather permitted late last week, scored red snapper, hapuka, blue eye trevalla and grey-banded cod. Red emperor were found along the deeper coral areas where queen snapper, breaksea cod and small dhufish were also caught. King George whiting and squid are being caught in reasonable numbers inshore with Michaelmas Island, Breaksea and Green islands, Gull Rock, Limestone and Frenchman Bay among the areas that fished well for both species this week.

Shore based

A massive salmon school stayed around Fosters Beach for most part of the week. Reef Beach also boasted big salmon schools, while Parry Beach produced catches between 4kg to 6kg. Herring are also still in excellent numbers right along the coast. Frenchman Bay is worth trying for King George whiting and squid. The local rivers are very discoloured at the moment, but not overly silty yet. This usually means that black bream can still be targeted up river because it is unlikely they have been driven down towards to the lower reaches. Baits and soft plastics usually produce better results for black bream compared to hard-body lures in these conditions.
South West Catches
Fishing in 20m of water straight out from the Old Dunsborough Boat Ramp in Geographe Bay one evening earlier this week, youngster Corren Wakelam jagged this solid pink snapper with an Ocean's Legacy 90g Hybrid Contact jig! Keep up the great fishing, Corren - your photos are great!

Boats

Crews who have been able to head out to Four Mile Reef and Eight Mile Reef have caught pink snapper, Samson fish and the occasional dhufish. King George whiting are in closer to shore, while there are also plenty of squid along the seagrass beds. Very little boating activity has happened off the west coast due to the rough conditions. There have been some nice hauls of blue swimmer crabs in drop nets in close off Quindalup.

Shore based

Surf fishers have been catching tailor, between 40cm and 70cm, at Injidup, Smiths Beach, Yallingup and Bunker Bay in the morning and evening. Herring have been plentiful along both sides of Cape Naturaliste, while whiting were caught along the sand flats within Geographe Bay before the last storm. 

Freshwater

Declan Busher was buzzing on Wednesday morning after he landed this chunky redfin perch in the Warren River while flicking a RMG Scorpion lure. If you want to get among the freshwater fishing fun this season, read how to get 'trout and about' and catch a reddie, brown trout or rainbow trout here.
Mandurah and Surrounds
Brian Edwards has been getting among quality fishing action 15km off Mandurah, catching King George whiting up to 50cm, dhufish and pink snapper in the 30m depths. There has also been plenty of southern bluefin tuna schools for Brian to enjoy, too. Well done - great fishing!

Mandurah

From White Hills to Tims Thicket, fishers are catching tailor in both the early morning and late afternoon, alongside small mulloway. Herring up to an impressive 40cm and tailor have been caught at the Dawesville Cut, with yellowfin whiting and the occasional King George whiting. The Mandurah Estuary has been producing skippy in addition to small yellowtail kingfish and small Samson fish. Blue swimmer crabs catches have been spasmodic this week. Madora Bay, Silver Sands and San Remo have produced tailor and whiting, while mulloway catches are expected to increase in the coming weeks. Fishers have had success catching black bream up to 36cm in lower reaches of the Murray and Serpentine rivers.

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

Warnbro Sound has been producing very big sand whiting, skippy, tarwhine and some good pink snapper. There are still plenty of squid being taken from both the shore and by dinghy anglers, too. Point Peron has been producing tarwhine, herring and tailor. Pink snapper are being caught near Carnac Island. Most spots around Rockingham are producing the usual run of herring, pilch, whiting and skippy. 
Perth Catches
Check the teeth out! Frank Zanatta found a window in the wild weather last week and managed to get on the vessel off Mindarie. The mission definitely reaped rewards, with Frank catching this 55cm baldchin groper from the 30m depths! "It was very thick in the girth and well-conditioned," he said.

Boats

There are still plenty of pink snapper being found off Perth at spots including Mewstone, Stragglers and the western edges of Five Fathom Bank and Three Mile Reef. Dhufish up to 20kg have been caught in depths starting at 40m alongside breaksea cod, queen snapper and baldchin groper. King George whiting and sand whiting have been coming from the 10m to 30m depths between Fremantle and Hillarys. Squid and cuttlefish are being found along the seagrass between Port Beach and Cottesloe. It is also important to remember that the annual pink snapper closure in the Cockburn Sound and Warnbro Sound comes into effect on September 1.

Shore based

Seaweed deposits along most of the metropolitan coast are continuing to make surf fishing challenging. However, fishers who avoided the seaweed caught tailor at South Beach, Cottesloe, Swanbourne, Floreat and Trigg. Herring have been caught at areas near reef and at the rock walls. King George whiting and squid are sometimes being caught from the stones at Fremantle and within Cockburn Sound. The deeper areas of the Swan and Canning rivers are still worth trying for mulloway.
 
 
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