RIGHT: Silvie Ruggieri was trying her luck catching fish off Cowes Jetty last Friday, February 14, while on a holiday from France. She was visiting her son Guillaume who now works and lives in Melbourne.

Eighteen-year-old Nev Hayes was filming for his popular YouTube channel ‘Nev’s Fishing’ when we caught him at the Cowes Jetty. He has more than 1700 subscribers to his channel.

with Jim’s Bait and Tackle

LAST week I mentioned our upcoming San Remo Easter fishing comp, which raises money for the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal and last Saturday we opened entries.
The competition again this year has been well supported by sponsors and we currently have a prize pool worth over $6000.
We have an early entry prize this year for entries in before April 3 and have included gummy sharks for juniors.
Aside from the major lucky angler prize of a helicopter flight, there will be over 30 random draws for prizes over the weekend so you don’t even need to catch a fish to be successful, just simply enter.

Walk For the Kids
Another event that will take place at the same time is the Walk For the Kids which is also a fundraiser for the Good Friday Appeal.
There are two walks you can take part in, one along the George Bass Coastal Walk between Kilcunda and Punchbowl or a casual walk around town where you can answer a series of trivia questions then go into the draw to win an Easter hamper.
The finishing touches are being put on this event but there will be plenty for the kids to do at the end of the walk and details soon of activities for the adults.
For more information or entry forms, give us a call here at the shop, drop in or jump on to the walk for the kids’ Facebook page at facebook.com/walkforthekidskilcundatosanremo.

Reports
We are in a bit of a low as far as fishermen go at the moment, which is nothing too unusual for this time of the year.
It is also a lot quieter than normal.
But much of that has to do with the quality autumn weather we have had.
Hopefully we will see some consistent weather conditions this time of the year is known for as we get further into autumn and the long weekend in March and of course Easter.
Looking back through diaries with Easter early April this year, there is still every chance we will still see temperatures into the low 30s and plenty of fish around so don’t put all the gear away yet.
Again this week, like most of the year really it’s been a week of having the opportunity when the wind dropped to hook up the boat and head out.
There are always plenty of zeros but the rest have produced some quality as well both in the bay and offshore while land-based has had its moments.
Dare I say it, there has been plenty of tuna caught again offshore from both the Cape Schanck area and along the coast to Cape Paterson.
For those who call and get all upset because I mention there are tuna being caught here, sorry to tell you but it has never been a secret and has been doing the rounds for over six weeks now.
The best reports this week have again come from the ends of the day and from a variety of lure choices.
Those sending reports from during the middle of the day are telling us that they are seeing plenty of tuna, but they are just not feeding.
Another thing common to the reports is the bite is quick and doesn’t last long.
We saw some bigger ones show up this week, around the 40kg mark – considerably bigger than what has been reported.
The tuna further east have been a little more random in area and seem to be more spread out until you get to the Cape Paterson area where they seem to have schooled up again.
All reports from all areas are coming from 25m to 45m of water and a variety of colours and types of lures.
Back in the bay and the pinkies are still quality, when you can get through the tiny undersized ones and some of the more successful reports have come from the latter part of the day into the evening when the tiny ones go off the bite.
There were reports this week from everywhere in the bay and even offshore of the undersize pinkies.
The bigger ones were coming from many areas and just seemed to be pot luck as to the best spot.
Cowes jetty and Newhaven jetty were the places to be for mackerel this week with several reports from both after dark.
Reports from the Cowes jetty also included school shark by the dozens and pinkies by the bucket full, problem was they were undersized and very few size ones actually showed up.
There was the odd trevally, garfish, flathead and even a whiting also reported this week, but calamari and mackerel were about the only thing legal length to take home.
Several customers commented that although most were small – at least something was happening and there was always the chance something bigger would come along.
Whiting have changed over the last couple of weeks.
The bigger fish are coming out of the deeper areas and now showing up in the more traditional shallower water.
The smaller fish have also thinned out.
So, while you are still catching them, they aren’t in the majority anymore.
The smaller fish though seem to be following the pinkies and are showing up all over the place.
From the reports, I would go back to basics with your whiting and fish in Cleeland Bight early and Dickies Bay in the evening.