By Craig Edmonds of Jim’s Bait and Tackle, San Remo

EASTER is just around the corner and will be here before we know it.
Hopefully the weather we had on Sunday will stay around for the Easter long weekend and everyone can get a fish in before the winter starts to appear.
Easter, of course, is the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal – and San Remo gets behind this great cause raising money.
We do our bit with the fishing competition, which runs all weekend and for the whole family. The prize list is done and can be seen on our Facebook page or by dropping into the shop. You can also enter over the phone or instore, there are still a few kids’ packs left but running out fast.
There is another fundraiser in town called the Walk for the Kids and there are a couple of walks you can do while raising money for the Good Friday Appeal. Information can be found on the Walk for the Kids San Remo Facebook page.
The easy answer for the most asked question “What’s the fishing like?” is: “It’s like the weather, all over the place.” The weather again was up and down, and it has an obvious effect of the reports, mostly because you just can’t get out fishing. There are some that push through the not so good weather, mostly land-based and produce some reasonable catches.
While we all enjoy the finer conditions the days of clear skies and no wind are the days you need to be out before or after the sun or you need to be able to fish off shore. The land is a little more forgiving but for the boats, the high bright sun doesn’t do you any favours.
Whiting reports have been OK again and some of the best came from the areas around Cleeland Bight and the edges of the Newhaven Channel. Numbers weren’t big but most of the fish were good size and few little ones.
The smaller whiting turned up during the middle of the day and in much bigger numbers, we also had a couple of land-based reports with the tide change around daylight. The best reports of whiting came from our kayak customers fishing in the evening and were from Cleeland Bight and Ventnor. The land reports of whiting were from the beach at Ventnor in the evening and from Smith’s Beach rocks on the low tide.
Those chasing whiting also told us of some good-sized pinkies and told us they were getting a lot of pinkies as well. The pinkies were probably easier to find than the whiting by the reports, but it seems the very small ones have woken up again.
The best of the pinkies and even snapper are coming from offshore on the reef off Kilcunda. We were told of them second hand, but didn’t see them; apparently there were a few pinkies from the jetty at Cowes and Newhaven. A couple of reports came from Corinella way also and seemed to be more consistent in size whereas everything else caught closer to San Remo seemed to be very mixed.
Calamari from the land are becoming very frustrating and have been very inconsistent all season, especially compared to the last few years. I don’t think this has anything to do with a lack of calamari in the bay just for some reason they aren’t venturing too close to the land-based areas.
We are getting plenty of reports from the kayaks and from the boats to suggest that there are plenty of calamari in the bay. One of the best spots from the land has been on the Newhaven jetty at the change of the tide but the calamari are not very big. We had a few reports from San Remo jetty and bigger calamari but almost every report came from well after dark.
Small salmon from the Island surf beaches and plenty of weed from the Kilcunda beaches but persevering through the weed and the salmon are much bigger. Those fishing at Kilcunda said the beaches towards the Powlett were cleaner and the weed was coming through in waves, so you did have a period you could fish then wait while the weed went past, hard work but if you manage a couple of 2kg models it makes it worth it.
If there is a lot of weed on the beach generally the easiest way to fish is with lures, much easier to pick the clear spots between the weed. The beaches on the Island were much cleaner, as they normally are but the salmon are always smaller.


New and improved fishing guide

Fisheries officers are encouraging anglers to grab a copy of the latest Victorian Recreational Fishing guide.

THE 2019 Victorian Recreational Fishing Guide has been revamped and is now available from tackle stores across the state and via the Victorian Fisheries Authority website.
Published annually, the free guide gives recreational anglers key information about Victoria’s fishing regulations including licences, target species, catch limits, closed season, equipment and safety.
Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA) CEO Travis Dowling said this year’s guide had received a major overhaul to make it simpler to navigate and easier to understand.
“Thanks to Target One Million, the State Government’s $27 million plan to increase participation, more people are casting a line and the new guide will make it easier for everyone to do the right thing,” Mr Dowling said.
“Feedback from anglers had suggested the previous guide was difficult to use in places so we’ve restructured it to make it more user friendly.”
Mr Dowling said the 2019 Recreational Fishing Guide is also available on the VFA website and work has commenced on an upgrade of the popular Vic Fishing app for iPhone and Android, likely to be released mid-year.
“We know smart phones are a vital part of every anglers’ tackle box these days, which is why we’re working with an experienced tech provider to seriously improve the current app.
“Stay tuned on the new app’s releases by jumping aboard VFA’s social media platforms on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.”
For more information visit www.vfa.vic.gov.au/recreationalfishingguide