See what's biting across WA in Recfishwest's State-wide Fishing Report 21 January 2022 🎣

 | By Seamus on 1/20/2022 8:42:00 PM | Views (540)
Recfishwest Newsletter
Fishing Report
Picture: Marco Fraschetti
Our contributors
Sedin Hasanovic
Jade Relph
Peter Fullarton
John Curtis
G'day <>,
There's something about yellowfin whiting boiling behind a surface lure in less than 1m of water. 

It's a visual form of fishing, made better by the fact that yellowfin fight particularly hard on the light set-up.

With the summer flats fishing heating up, Western Angler editor Scott Coghlan has taken an in-depth look at yellowfin whiting in this week's Scott's Species. 

Find the latest Scott's Species below and read more about how to effectively target yellowfin whiting on our I Love Fishing website.

For anyone wanting to contribute to the weekly fishing report, photos reflecting Recfishwest's responsible fish handling practices will be given preference.

If you know someone who loves fishing and would like to receive the weekly State-wide Fishing Report and our other exclusive communications, let them know they can become a Recfishwest member for just $10 a year.

Tight lines and safe fishing!

Zach Relph


Catch of the Week!

Yeww! David Hastie scored this dolphinfish when he ducked beneath the surface at FAD RFW5 off Perth last week. Photos like this show the sportfishing opportunities FADs produce for fishers.Â đŸ€żđŸŸ

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Shhhhh, secret spot
Shafwan Abdin has been having a world of fun targeting threadfin salmon near Port Hedland. đŸ€©đŸ˜

Shhhhh, secret spot

This 56cm bartail flathead from the Swan River is a respectable PB for Ismail Isa. That's a solid flattie!

Shhhhh, secret spot

Tom Schuiling joined Max Sampson for a day on the Swan and came across this speedster.Â đŸ”„đŸ”„
Broome catches
This 78cm post-storm barra put a smile on Nathan Southern's face last Sunday afternoon. 👏👏👏


Following last week's stormy weather that swept across the West Kimberley, writes local fisher Jade Relph, most boat fishers are staying within the confines of the local creeks chasing barramundi. Nathan Southern, pictured above, was one of those fishers who enjoyed a terrific session. "I could see that there was only one hook of the treble through the fish's lip halfway through the fight, which made the catch that much better," Nathan said. "The lure fell out as it was netted." Small boat fishers are still enjoying fun sessions chasing tripletail and queenfish in the relatively protected areas of Roebuck Bay.


Mud crabs have remained a popular choice among fishers this week, with the mangroves close to Broome still producing big muddies. There have been reports of land-based anglers putting in the hard yards for barra along stretches of the Fitzroy River landing fish to about 80cm. However, the fishers I've spoken to who've managed to land a barra have gone sessions without a sniff, so brace for a potential doughnut if you're planning to go. Tackle World Broome pro staff member Gino Chambers landed an impressive 88cm barra from a secret land-based location very, very close to the heart of town last week. If you're in store, try get him to tell you where it was! He keeps his cards close to his chest.
Exmouth catches
West of the Muiron Islands, Kai Brennan landed this BEAST 79cm coral trout. Awesome work, Kai! 😁


Blue marlin are being encountered in the gamefishing grounds out wide, while wahoo and dolphinfish have also been found in these waters. Behind the reef on the west-side, Spanish mackerel have been found fairly regularly while spangled emperor have taken small stickbaits within the lagoon. Goldband snapper have been caught in the 100m depths, with local Anthony Ietto enjoying an epic session mid-week. Red emperor and Rankin cod have been found in depths between 50m and 80m. Spearfishers are doing well on coral trout and bluebone within the Gulf.


Spangled emperor are being found relatively close to shore by land-based fishers on the west-side, with surface lures and flies tempting the sought-after species. Areas featuring reef between Tantabiddi and the Mildura Wreck are among the spots where spangled emperor have been caught this week. There's also been reports of GT to 15kg caught by land-based fishers on the west coast this past fortnight, however, no photos have surfaced to verify the claims! Fly fishers are still being presented with plenty of opportunities to target permit in the lower reaches of the Exmouth Gulf, while queenfish to 1m have also been seen lurking in similiar areas. 

FAD-tastic entries into Richter and Madfish FADs photo comp

Joel Borgers, pictured above, is among sportfishers who love fishing the FADs for dolphinfish off Perth.

Richter Lures and Madfish Gear are the FADs fishing partners! Given photographic evidence of the FADs fishing success will help ensure the program continues into the future, the Richter and Madfish crew on board sponsoring the photo competition. If you're fishing the FADs, send your FADs fishing photos to Recfishwest’s Zach Relph to take part in the Richter/Madfish FADs Photo Comp for a chance to win awesome monthly Richter and Madfish prizes! By the end of the three-year trial, it is critically important that we have plenty of video and photographic evidence showing the FADs’ fishing success.

Kalbarri catches


A pesky southerly has continued to make offshore fishing from the vessel difficult this week. What are believed to be free-jumping Spanish mackerel have been spotted by holidaymakers at the Red Bluff lookout. Before the consistent southerly set in, catches of the toothy predators were slowly starting to increase off Kalbarri. Taking that into account, local fishers are eager to target Spaniards once conditions improve. Trolling hardbody lures which dive to about 2m around the 15m and 20m depths will likely be your best bet for landing one of these sought-after pelagics.


For those venturing a bit out of town, Wagoe Beach is producing impressive tailor and mulloway. Families on holidays in Kalbarri wetting a line in the Murchison River are reporting bream, whiting and chopper tailor. Wittecarra is still fishing well for tailor in the mornings, while Oyster Reef is also fishing well in the morning and evenings. If you want to know more about fishing Kalbarri, visit our I Love Fishing website.
Geraldton catches


Strong winds are continuing to keep most Geraldton boat fishers on land, with not too many opportunities to head wide. However, dinghy fishers staying close to shore are coming across good numbers of herring in front of St Georges, while spots close to the marina are also producing squid. There are still a few crayfish being picked up by potters.


Despite the wind, the tailor fishing has been great to the north of town. Drummond's Cove has been producing tailor to 45cm, in addition to a couple of impressive specimen of about 75cm. Herring have been patchy along most spots near Geraldton, aside from Drummond's, Tarcoola and the Southgate Dunes. Blue swimmer crab catches are increasing within Greenough River, especially near Devlin's Pool.
Lancelin catches
Young gun Liam had to muster all of his strength to get this baldie off the bottom while fishing off Lancelin on Wednesday. That's a fantastic baldie, Liam - definitely a fish to remember, that's for sure!


Liam, pictured above, couldn't have wished for a better start to his fishing adventure off Lancelin on Wednesday. The first drop of the day, Liam's rod doubled over barely seconds after his bait reached the bottom. Knowing it was a decent fish on the end of his line, Liam flexed his muscles and was more than happy to land the awesome baldchin groper. Liam's catch is one of a couple baldies caught off Lancelin this week, with demersal fishers finding a range of species throughout a range of depths. Most of the larger dhufish have been caught from 35m and beyond. Fishers wetting a line inside of the bay are reporting good numbers of herring in the southern shallows, while there are plenty of pike schooling through the weed beds.


Lancelin's jetty has been fishing well each evening for herring, tailor and pike, with reports of a tailor every cast some nights this week. Onshore winds have blown in a huge amount of floating seaweed along the northern beaches, making fishing at certain sections of the coast a hassle. Fishing between the weedy areas is easiest in the mornings when the swells and wind are down with tailor, dart and herring on the chew until mid-morning. Bluespotted flathead have also been a common bycatch. Drone fishers are reporting pink snapper and King George whiting at Didie Bay. 

Scott’s Species – yellowfin whiting, a flats fishing fascination

Lure fishing for yellowfin whiting has become popular in WA's south in recent years. 📾 Han Yeoh

There have always been people who like catching yellowfin whiting, writes Western Angler editor Scott Coghlan, but the development of lure fishing for them, and particularly with surface lures, has seen an incredible boost in popularity over the last decade. More and more anglers have discovered the joys of wading the shallows casting tiny lures for what are a surprisingly aggressive fish, and which show up in big numbers in many locations over the warmer months. Read the latest Scott's Species article here!

Esperance catches


The opportunity to head wide off Esperance has been limited this week amid strong winds. As a result, small boat fishers wetting a line inside of the bay are accounting for majority of the boat fishing off the port side town with bread-and-butter species such as herring and skippy about, alongside squid and the occasional King George whiting. 


A strong 30-odd knot south-easterly swept across Esperance earlier this week, making fishing relatively tough. But, protected parts of the coast, such as Victoria Harbour or Cape Arid, are options for land-based fishers to stay out of the wind with the occasional salmon and plenty of skippy on offer. With the strong wind in play, Bandy Creek Boat Harbour has remained a popular spot for tourists this school holidays and is fishing well for King George whiting and skippy. The Esperance Jetty is still offering squid along the seagrass, with mornings the best part of the day to chase the cephalopods. 
Great Southern catches
Recfishwest's John Dempsey caught a couple of solid whiting from the Wilson Inlet last week. ✔✔


Off Bremer Bay, good numbers of nannygai are being encountered out wide by those finding a gap in the weather window. Bremer Bay fishers are also anticipating tuna are to show up in the coming weeks, with water temperatures around 20.5C at the moment. For those fishing off Albany, when conditions have been favourable this week, the 60m depths are producing solid queen snapper, breaksea cod and the occasional dhufish. King George Sound has remained a reliable spot to chase squid along the seagrass meadows.

This harlequin was a welcome catch for Paul Cunningham while he was exploring the south coast. 😁


During the Southern Tour of SunSmart Fishing Clinic at Denmark, held in conjunction with our partners Healthway, Recfishwest's John Dempsey was teaching youngsters how to cast when this plump whiting took his lure! The kids’ fishing clinics are a fantastic way to teach kids the basics of fishing, the importance of sustainability, safe fishing and being safe in the sun. Plus, safe and accessible with great fishing, rivers and estuaries along our State’s south coast are simply awesome! Find out more about the recent run of kids' fishing clinics at the bottom of the report. Salmon schools have been encountered at Fosters Beach this week, while there have been reports of the occasional school spotted near Cheynes. 
South West catches
James Duncan was vibbbbbbin' after this dhuie took his Nomad Vertrex Max Soft Vibe off Bunbury.


James Duncan, pictured above, has been among Bunbury boat fishers to enjoy terrific sessions off Bunbury this past week. Dhufish have been found in 30m and beyond off the South West capital, while pink snapper are still being caught in less than 10m of water at spots to the north of the Cut. The reefy spots off Binningup have Samson fish on offer, in addition to skippy especially when burley is introduced. Farther south, Busselton is also fishing well for dhufish in 20m and beyond, while pink snapper have been reported at Four Mile Reef. Squid have been a staple along the seagrass meadows off Busselton. 


Last weekend, young gun Daniel Liuto achieved an impressive feat when he landed a dhufish off the Busselton Jetty while night fishing. While not too many other catches off the iconic structure will trump Daniel's catch, the Busselton Jetty is producing plenty of squid in the evening in addition to skippy and herring in the mornings. Recfishwest's Aaron Moses was squidding from the Busselton Jetty this week when a solid squid took his jig. From the structure, Aaron spotted a shadow zooming in behind the cephalopod and it so happened to be a Sambo! Aaron managed to land the squid, before he quickly swapped out his jig in favour of a soft plastic in an attempt to land the Samson fish. However, it wasn't to be. There have been reports of small Sambos patrolling the Busselton Jetty's pylons during the day, taking rigs intended for bread-and-butter species. Tailor to about 40cm are being caught along beaches to the north and south of Bunbury, especially at Belvedere and Buffalo, while Myalup is fishing well for herring and whiting. Scoopers in the Leschenault Estuary are reporting plenty of blue swimmer crabs, however, they're struggling to find too many keepers.


Tyler Rowe has been among fishers to explore the South West in search for marron this season! Be sure to follow the Two Pirates Fishing and Outdoors page on Facebook for more marron photos.🙌

An afternoon well spent resulted in a couple of brown trout for Giordano Gervasi last weekend. đŸ˜ČđŸ˜Č

Mandurah and surrounds
Nothing beats a day out on the water when you catch a memorable fish like this dolphinfish Oliver Stevens landed at the Complete Angler FAD recently. That's definitely a catch to remember, Oliver! 


Jigging for Sambos is continuing to be the go-to option for boat fishers keen to put their tackle to the test. Demersal fishing has been productive off Mandurah this week, with dhufish and breaksea cod found by those bottom bouncing along areas featuring reef in 40m or more. Closer to shore, skippy have been providing fantastic fishing for boat fishers, particularly those with youngsters aboard enjoying the school holidays. Land-based fishers wetting a line from the beaches near Mandurah are catching herring, tarwhine and whiting during the day, while tailor are active in the early morning and evening. Mulloway have been caught at San Remo, Madora and Singleton after dark. South of Mandurah, larger tailor are being landed at dusk and after dark from Tims Thicket and White Hills.

A 55cm tailor off Rockingham was one of a few ripper fish Joel Borgers landed on Tuesday. 😎😎

The Peel-Harvey Estuary has been keeping those wading the flats entertained, with yellowfin whiting taking small surface popper and small prawn imitation vibes. Skippy have also been biting well throughout the estuary, with herring and tailor also about. Blue swimmer crabs are keeping scoopers and drop netters busy, with drop netters working along the drop-off reporting better results. Black bream are still active in the Murray and Serpentine rivers, taking a variety of lures near the snags.

Secret Harbour / Warnbro / Port Kennedy / Rockingham / Safety Bay

When conditions have been suitable to travel wide, sportfishers reported the Mangles Bay Fishing Club's FADs were continuing to fish well for dolphinfish. Young gun Oliver Stevens, pictured above, and his father Wayne ventured to the Compleat Angler FAD off Rockingham recently and enjoyed a sensational session catching dollies! If you want to fish the FADs off Rockingham, find the coordinates here. Mad-keen fisher Joel Borgers, also pictured above, enjoyed a sensational session in his boat off Rockingham on Tuesday, catching a mixed bag which included a 55cm tailor, pink snapper and Samson fish! Shore-based anglers fishing for tailor are finding good fish along the Kwinana, Port Kennedy and Secret Harbour beaches. There are also plenty of whiting near the Rockingham jetties. 

Jemma, Lachlan, Monique and Lauren all caught two blue swimmer crabs each in the Murray River! 👏
Perth catches
Young gun Tom Corrie has been enjoying Swan River sessions chasing flathead this summer. 👍👍


Squid have remained a reliable catch in Cockburn Sound's safe and accessible waters for small boat owners and kayak fishers. Behind Rottnest Island is fishing well for demersal species, with breaksea cod and dhufish landed this week. King George whiting have also been found in similar grounds, in addition to areas off Two Rocks and Hillarys. Those wanting to jig for Samson fish are having plenty of fun at the Perth Fish Towers, with reports of Sambos to 15kg. Want the coordinates to the Perth Fish Towers? Click here. Drop netters in the Swan River are reporting good catches of blue swimmer crabs.

About an hour north of Perth, Lewis Duffy tempted this lovely Moore River black bream. 😎😎

The FADs deployed off Perth as part of the State-wide FADs trial program are producing sensational sportfishing, especially RFW5 and RFW6, with dolphinfish being caught. Spearfishers are still reporting plenty of dolphinfish near the FADs, while those casting lures are having success catching the hard-fighting pelagics too. The north metro artificial reef is producing skippy and the occasional small Sambo for small boat fishers at a safe and accessible location. Click here to find the coordinates. 

Squid on a long-shank in 17m of water east of Rottnest was the winning recipe for Neil Fox, landing this 48cm King George whiting.


Bill Bennett has been among fishers to catch flathead along the Swan River flats recently, catching an impressive 47cm specimen on a Bucktail Jig in addition to a few smaller models on vibes. Tom Corrie, pictured above, has also been having success at known flathead haunts near Fremantle, while fishers have reported flatties to 45cm at the Como flats and near Dalkeith. Black bream anglers are reporting decent catches from the Swan River at the moment, with the Causeway Bridge among the better performing spots. 

Young gun 'Chubs' joined his dad, Matty Ma, for a fish in the Swan and caught a few bream.

Interestingly, there's been reports of a salmon school, which is obviously not associated with the annual salmon run, off Leighton this week. The northern beaches are fishing OK for tailor, however, you have to be at your spot just after first light if you want to have success, according to tailor enthusiasts. North Mole has squid on offer in the evening, while Floreat Drain has bread-and-butter species such as herring. 

While chasing flatties in the Swan River, this yellowfin 'ting smashed Connor Blackburn's lure.

SunSmart Fishing Clinics' Catch of the Day

Sponsored by Healthway

Recfishwest's Southern Tour of SunSmart Fishing Clinics saw many awesome catches, like this bream, at clinics in Albany, Bremer Bay, Denmark, Walpole and Augusta.
Recfishwest's Southern Tour of SunSmart Fishing Clinics was a massive hit, held in partnership with Healthway, with many youngsters taking part and learning the basics of fishing. From bream near Albany, to massive whiting in Denmark's Wilson Inlet and more bream in the Blackwood River, near Augusta, it's easy to see why so many fishers the awesome, safe and accessible fishing experiences enjoyed in rivers and estuaries along our State's south coast. Estuarine environments provide nursery habitat for many popular species, such as black bream. That’s why these free clinics focus on teaching kids – who are the next generation of fishers – the importance of safe fishing, correct fish handling, sustainability and caring for the aquatic environment. Find more photos from the clinics here.
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This Fishing Report was submitted on 1/20/2022 8:42:00 PM by Seamus and last updated on 1/21/2022 7:56:54 AM.


3/45 Northside Drive
Hillarys, WA AU

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Degree, Decimal Minutes:
S31Âș 49.285', E115Âș 44.312'
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-31.82141, 115.73853
Degree, Minutes, Seconds:
S31Âș 49' 17.08", E115Âș 44' 18.71"

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