Victoria, Australia’s most densely-populated state, boasts of several hot spots for fishing and for good reasons, too. Most of its regional divisions have plenty of bodies of water from creeks to rivers and lakes suitable for fishing while its coastal boundaries – the Tasman Sea to the east as well as the Bass Strait to the south – are havens for fishermen seeking to catch the next big one. Many of its identified hot spots like Port Phillip Bay and Western Port Bay are even popular among fishermen from all across Australia for this reason.
Also known simply as The Bay among locals, Port Phillip Bay is a large bay measuring 1,930 square kilometres with a shore stretching for roughly 264 kilometres in Melbourne. It is a navigable body of water, which explains its popularity among recreational and professional fishermen on boats of all sizes, despite its relative shallowness for its size; the deepest part is just 24 meters while half is shallower than 8 meters.
Aside from the following species of fish, Port Philip Bay is also home to whales, dolphins, and seals as well as seabirds, among others. (Format: Specie. Hot Spot. Peak season)
• Australian salmon – Mordialloc Pier. March-September
• Bream – Patterson River. June-November
• Flathead – Werribbee River. October-March
• Garfish – Station Pier. November-July
• King George Whiting – Sorrento Pier. November-April
• Leatherjacket – Mornington Pier. The entire year
• Silver trevally – Cunningham Pier. October-May
• Snapper – Ferguson Street Pier. October-May
• Yellow-eye mullet – Mordialloc Pier. March-September
• Squid – Queenscliff Pier. April-October.
Since local weather conditions affect the fishing opportunities in Port Phillip Bay, it is also a good idea to have a reliable fishing app on your smartphone. Movtan is one such reliable fishing app that provides for information about hot spots as well as about local weather conditions, tidal currents, and other factors affecting fishing in the area.
Sometimes known as Western Port Bay although the designation is incorrect, Western Port is a large tidal bay located in southern Victoria and bounded by the Bass Strait. It has two large islands, namely, Phillip Island and French Island, and it is separated from Port Philip by the Mornington Peninsula. It is also the home for Australian fur seals, dolphins and whales as well as seabirds and migratory waders, thus, its status as a wetland of international significance under the Ramsar Convention.
The bay lies an hour from Melbourne by car, thus, its accessibility for fishermen who want to catch the following species of fish: (The bay is also home to Marine Parks so ask around which areas are open for fishing and then consult with your fishing app’s map)
• Elephant fish – Corinella Pier. March-May
• Flathead -Werribee River. October-March
Most of the fishes found in Port Philip are also abundant at Western Port. It is then common for fishermen to transfer from Port Philip to Western Port depending on the latest hot spots generated by the Movtan fishing app.
The Hopkins River starts near Ararat and then enters Bass Strait at Warrnambool; Merri River is the other river that flows to Warrnambool. Its major tributaries are Mount Emu Creek and Salt Creek. Its most abundant fishes are:
• Black bream can be caught in various depths from deep holes to shallow margins. Peak months are from July to September.
• Estuary perch are usually found near man made structures like bridges, jetties and fallen trees as well as on drop-offs, reefs and weed beds.
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