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Recfishwest's State-wide Fishing Report 17 November 2023 ūüé£

 | By Seamus on 11/17/2023 12:32:00 AM | Views (99)
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Pic of the Week!

@indepthangler_josh landed this mighty GT in the Montebellos this week and this dark beast would have put up one hell of a fight in relatively shallow waters. We love giant trevally snaps, so if you reel one in, send it in! 

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Get your gear ready, the four days where you can jump in the drink and grab a feed of abs this summer are out! 

Nearly 17,000 of WA's licensed abalone recfishers will be able to gather a feed from Guilderton to Busselton between 7-8am on the following days:

- Saturday, 9 December
- Saturday, 13 January
- Saturday, 3 February
- Saturday, 17 February

If one of these days is cancelled due to poor conditions, a backup day will be announced.

Want to know the best abalone fishing zones, gear and safety tips? Check out the abalone advice from Surf Life Saving WA here.

Broome catches
Check out this solid tripletail measuring 63cm caught on a Jackall Squirrel by Zac Gonzales on a recent trip out of town! These fish love hanging around any drifting structure, so flick your plastics or lures nearby and you're in with a good shot. Pic courtesy of @tackleworldbroome. 


Fishing in Roebuck Bay has become more creek-focused because of the strong winds but northern mulloway have been active on the bay’s ledges and in its deeper holes with the 12-15m depths fishing well. Nomad Squidtrex vibes proved effective on mulloway around a metre long. The edge of the Deeps offered a few fingermark but tripletail activity around the bay’s mooring buoys has quietened, so it might be worth venturing further away from town as Zac Gonzales did as seen in the snap above. Crab Creek remained the best of the creeks although catches in Dampier Creek have improved markedly. Barramundi around the 70cm mark have been the main quarry in both creeks with Halco’s new TBarra 80 proving very effective as it gets down to 3m when trolled. Threadfin salmon catches have tapered off in the creeks but blue-nosed salmon have been around in big numbers. Down at The Fingers there were good numbers of barramundi, lots of blue-nosed salmon and northern mulloway up to a metre. There will be some moderate south-westerly winds with a 1.5m swell this weekend but it should calm down considerably from early next week. 


At the Port Jetty there have been queenfish and golden trevally up to 5kg, while barramundi have been lurking around the pylons. Town Beach Jetty was consistent for small species such as trevally, bream and javelin fish. Big tides ruled out most land-based creek fishing this week but with neap tides on the way, Crab Creek should offer trevally, queenfish and blue-nosed salmon. The best spot for a feed of whiting this week was from the beach at Entrance Point. For the best tips and gear for your fishing expedition, make sure you visit the helpful pros at Tackle World Broome for advice and they will provide details on spots with the best access for a flick.
Exmouth catches
There has been a steady increase in red emperor catches over the past few weeks all throughout the waters off Exmouth and also throughout the Pilbara region, with @mitchwards landing this lovely fish via jigging. 


Westerly winds have limited a lot of activity on the west side but the bigger boats have been enjoying a good start to the blue marlin season, encountering good fish in depths up to a 1000m. Back towards the Gulf, Exmouth's King Reef produced Spanish mackerel and cobia and bottom fishing has been good for blue-lined emperor, bluebone and golden trevally. These same bottom species have come from the shoals in the Gulf, while on the surface mack tuna and school mackerel have been active along with the odd Spanish mackerel turning up. Sailfish action in the Gulf slowed a little but crews using live baits are still getting a few and big queenfish have been among the bycatch. On the flats deep in the Gulf fly-fishers have targeted queenfish, giant herring and trevally, while the creeks that drain into the Gulf have produced mud crabs. Squid are still in reasonable numbers out from the town marina and off the industrial estate. It should be beautiful out on the water this week albeit for some very hot days, so make sure you cover up and slap on the sunscreen. 


Shore fishers have enjoyed a consistent if not spectacular week. Learmonth Jetty fished well for squid, whiting and bream. The Bundegi boat ramp offered squid and small trevally, with queenfish hitting bait balls and taking small metal slices there. At the town marina, squid have been worth a go off the outside rock wall, while on the inside there have been bream, mangrove jack and javelin fish. Up at the Lighthouse and Mildura Wreck spangled emperor, queenfish and the odd bluebone have been caught in good sizes, while at Tantabiddi a few spangled emperor and golden trevally have been landed when the westerly winds have eased. A little out of town, good feeds of whiting have come from Pebble Beach where flathead and bream have been among the bycatch. Big thanks to the great crew from Tackle World Exmouth for their tips! 
Kalbarri catches
Leigh is never disappointed to hook a silver ghost! This nice mulloway snap was courtesy of @nickihuntfishing. 


Unfortunately there were no reports of pelagics and boating activity has been confined to a few crayfishers dropping pots. Some decent catches of bugs were rolling through this week in a range of depths though. Dinghy anglers headed across the Murchison River to fish from the shore at Frustrations and Oyster reefs with a fair amount of tailor and whiting turning up. Land-based fishing was excellent this week, so check out the hotspots below and consider taking your boat or kayak there if possible. The mornings this weekend are looking best given there should be a drop in the easterly winds but expect it to be choppy from 2pm onwards. 


At least shore fishers have had plenty to smile about this week! Tailor were firing at Wittecarra and Red Bluff, where most mornings saw anglers picking up five or six tailor, some over 50cm. Just remember that you can only take two tailor over 50cm. Small mulloway up to 75cm have also been caught and good catches of sand whiting have come from Wittecarra. Both spots have also fished well in the evenings when the wind was down. This week the coastal gorges produced a couple of baldchin groper, just-sized pink snapper and a surprise capture, a surf parrotfish. Oyster Reef held small pink snapper and decent tailor and down at Wagoe there have been mulloway up to 14kg, tailor and pink snapper. In the Murchison River blue swimmer crabs have started to appear and mud crabs have remained in good numbers. The foreshore has fished well for yellowfin whiting and bream have been biting up river. At the Sand Spit chopper tailor to 35cm have been caught and around the marina boat pens small mangrove jack have turned up. Big thanks to Dean from Kalbarri Sports and Dive for his tips as always!
Geraldton catches


With a lack of offshore pelagic activity dinghy fishers have been concentrating on squid, with the sheltered stretch from Point Moore to St George’s producing cephalopods with hoods in the 35cm range. Otherwise it's been relatively quiet, but in a similar case as Kalbarri, the land-based fishing has saved the day. Conditions won't look good for the boats until Thursday with strong southerly winds rolling through until at least Wednesday. 


From Drummonds Cove heading north to Coronations pink snapper and baldchin groper have been caught, mostly by drone fishers. Shore casters have been doing well on tailor there but shovel-nosed sharks have been a nuisance. Whiting catches were hit and miss but at times good catches have come from Separation Point, the back of the Lives and up at Morning Reef.  Fishing from the reefs in the mornings has been very productive at Greenough, Southgates and north of Drummonds Cove at Morning Reef and towards the Buller River mouth, where excellent mixed bags have included mainly tailor but also herring, pink snapper, school mackerel and even cobia. Although the water is a little murky, squid have been taken on the north side of the Batavia Coast Marina while the Greenough River mouth has enjoyed a good run of tailor. Big thanks to Geraldton Sports Centre for their report as always! 
Lancelin catches


Offshore the main game has been chasing the tuna schools, with a good tactic involving positioning the boat upwind to get into casting range. Small metals or stickbaits working best as floating seaweed made trolling tedious work. Saturday morning Lancelin Angling & Aquatic Club will be escorting a convoy of excited fishers keen to try for a dolphinfish out at the new FADs. It will be a safe escort to help local fishers familiarise the 45 nautical mile return trip. Boats will be demonstrating FAD etiquette on how to share the fishing experience by giving each boat a pass to troll, cast or dive in turn (can also find FADs fishing etiquette tips on our webpage here). Smaller boats and kayaks have been enjoying the much safer and productive waters of the bay. There were a few large squid caught over the sea grass late in the afternoon along with some tailor, skippy and the southern shallows are abounding with herring schools. Tomorrow morning could hold a nice window for the boaties. 


Herring, skippy and tailor have been biting well off the jetty from sunset throughout the night. Beach casters have been finding fishing hit or miss but if you are in the right spot on the right day, some great catches of tailor can be had at sunrise or sunset. Herring in excess of 30cm have been featuring in the bags of those chasing tailor on pilchards. Mornings fished better for tarwhine, herring and even some solid pink snapper have come off the cast. There’s been low activity from the drone fishers but it is certainly time to break out the drone and send some baits out, with a lot of snapper activity reported from boats along the near shore. Small whaler sharks have been active at night along the beaches. Big thanks to Peter Fullarton for his tips as always and make sure you check out his Tailored Treks fishing tours! 
Esperance catches


Horrible conditions this week even prevented boats from fishing in Esperance Bay but the strong winds and big swells are expected to briefly ease this weekend. After strong south-easterlies the nannygai tend to fire up, so crews will be targeting them at Leg of Lamb Bank and Figure of Eight Island. Big Samson fish are likely to be hanging around Woody Island and tuna could be worth a crack at Long Island. The 10m depths off Fourth Beach could be worth a try for sand whiting, while this time of year is usually good for King George whiting at Lovers Cove. Squid are likely to be active in Esperance Bay as the water clears. Both mornings this weekend could bode well for the boaties but the wild easterly winds will return from Monday onwards. 


Shore fishing has been pretty good thankfully. Thomas River, a great place to shelter from strong easterlies and south-easterlies, produced mulloway up to a metre along with plenty of big skippy to 5kg and the odd gummy shark. Big sand whiting and flathead have been caught at Stockyards Beach and good-sized King George whiting have come from Bandy Creek Boat Harbour. Squid have been in good numbers at the Town Jetty, while Taylor Street Jetty was a hotspot for garfish at night. The 10-Mile Lagoon held big flathead and salmon, while Warrenup, another sheltered spot, has produced big salmon, some of them weighing 6kg. At Stokes Inlet bream to 43cm have been taking baits and lures, while bream to 40cm have been caught on surface lures at Woody Lake in the late afternoons. Big thanks to Southern Sport & Tackle for their report as always! 

Great Southern catches
If the bream are giving off suss vibes, chuck on the muss vibe. The crew from @outback_breamer_baits had a flick among the structure and there were plenty of 40cm+ beauties lurking around. 


Conditions have been very poor this week and the few boats that did venture out when small weather windows arose tended to stay close to shore in King George Sound, where King George whiting have been in reasonable numbers but not in great sizes. Squid numbers in close have been pretty good and both Sunday and Monday morning should see the calmest conditions this week so these windows could provide your best shot at grabbing a delicious feed. 


Before the conditions turned gnarly queen snapper and Samson fish were caught from rock platforms east of town but for most of the week land-based activity has been restricted to sheltered bays and marinas. The town marina held herring and small skippy and squidding has been good there at times. Squidding has also been good at Emu Point and Frenchman Bay and both spots have held small King George whiting. Bream catches have been steadily improving in the Kalgan River and mulloway have started to become active as well, with large soft plastics working nicely. Big thanks to the crew from Trailblazers in Albany for their tips!

South West catches
@wadefennell_fishing jumped on the Sambo wagon this week off Busselton and there have been plenty around making reels sing over the past week. This bloke catches great fish and does them justice by taking awesome snaps, give his page a follow!


The weather has been challenging but Samson fish and tuna have been keeping boaties happy off Bunbury and Busselton, with crews keeping an eye for working birds or surface bust-ups. Live baits have worked particularly well on the Samson fish, while tuna have been happy to hit small metal slices. King George whiting action has been slow out from Bunbury but the KG's have reasonable in Geographe Bay. Bunbury’s sand whiting grounds have started to produce solid fish in 25-30m depths. Most squid chasers have favoured Geographe Bay with the 8m depths just north of Busselton working well, while in the Leschenault estuary dinghy fishers have been targeting chopper tailor. Saturday morning at this stage looks great for a fish and should hold the best window for this week. 


Beach fishing has been very good for tailor with choppers averaging 40cm being caught from Preston Beach right through to Forrest Beach. Buffalo Beach has been one of the better spots and a tailor nudging 70cm was landed there this week. Mulloway up to 90cm have also been landed along this stretch and sand whiting catches have improved. Closer to Bunbury, sand whiting, chopper tailor and herring have been taken from the rock walls at Back Beach, while the Bunbury Cut produced the same species. Very low tides hindered yellowfin whiting catches this week, but conditions are expected to be more favourable next week and poppers and vibes should produce the goods. In the Collie River, mulloway over a metre have been mixed in with soapies, while the Busselton Jetty fished well for squid from about halfway out to the end. Herring are right along the jetty and the end saw Samson fish popping up. Dolphin Road in West Busselton offered herring, small chopper tailor and yellowfin whiting, while herring and juvenile salmon were being caught from Geographe Bay's beaches. Kudos to the crew from Whitey's Tackle for their tips!

We love seeing youngsters catching fat redfin perch and this 42cm beauty was landed by Blake this week in our picturesque South-West alongside the Down South Water Rats crew. Check out the Redfin Perch WA Facebook page to keep up to date with good spots and snaps! 
Logue Brook Dam produced some big brown trout, while at Harvey Dam small rainbow trout have been about in good numbers but have been very hard to tempt. Redfin perch on the other hand have been plentiful there and also at Wellington Dam, where kayakers have done well on them. Redfin have also been in good numbers all throughout the Pemberton region, along with small rainbow trout, while redfin have been taken in good numbers in the Capel River. Pemberton’s Lefroy Brook and Big Brook Dam have produced rainbow trout and a few browns. If you catch any great trout or redfin, make sure you message us a snap of the catch to our Instagram page @recfishwest. 
Mandurah and surrounds
Diving a new spot paid off nicely for Lachie Ramm @salty_curls98 this week and now is a great time to prowl under the surface for the big crays before the whites run is expected to kick off towards the end of November or early December. 


Yellowfin whiting catches have continued to improve in the estuary but with this week’s stormy weather meant a bit of persistence was required. The yellowfin have been caught deep in the estuary as far up as Island Point with vibe lures having the edge on surface poppers. Tailor were still plentiful in the estuary with many fish over the 40cm mark being taken by dinghy fishers trolling or anchoring on the edge of drop-offs. Some of the better tailor lures have been Bassday Suga Pens, Jackson RA Pops and the ever-reliable Halco Twisty. At the Dawesville Cut, the calmer currents have slowed herring and chopper tailor activity but have brought other species to the fore, including skippy and juvenile salmon. During the gentle rising tide in the late afternoon, the Cut also fished well for squid. At the town traffic bridges, small tailor, the odd herring, juvenile salmon and small skippy have been caught and the edges of the channel there have produced big yellowfin whiting at times. Black bream catches have improved in the canals and around boat pens and the bycatch has included almost-sized pink snapper and soapy mulloway. In the open sea, King George whiting catches have been consistent on the 30m depth line, especially out from Dawesville and Samson fish have been active in similar depths. Inside the Five-Fathom Bank sand whiting catches have been good and the same area often produces big skippy at this time of year. Tailor catches have been consistent from the beaches on both sides of town with Seascapes one of the better spots. Seascapes also produced good numbers of sand whiting. The sheltered beaches at Falcon and Melros offered squid from the shore with jigs fished under a float, or for dinghy anglers drifting over the close-in weed beds. Both mornings this weekend should hold the best boating windows at this stage. Make sure you pay a visit to the great crew from Tackle World Miami for the best tips and gear! 


Many King George whiting chasers have been targeting the deeper water and some have brought home quality fish. One of the better spots has been the back of Garden Island, with good KG's coming from the 18-40m depths. Squid chasers are also finding the deeper water is fishing better and have found plenty in 8-15m depths in Warnbro and Cockburn Sound, Mangles Bay near the basin and on Parmelia Bank. Sand whiting are fishing well inside the Five-Fathom, in both the Sounds and out at Windmills, while good tailor are being caught on stickbaits and unweighted mulies on the reef breaks at Stragglers and Mewstones. Some good skippy have also been caught around Stragglers. As for shore-based fishing, tailor continued to fish well at Secret Harbour and Port Kennedy beaches and also at Long Point. Smaller choppers and herring are at Rockingham and Palm Beach jetties, which have offered squid at times. Woodman Point and the Ammo Jetty also held squid and the odd chopper tailor in the evening, while good sand whiting have been caught from the jetty. The Penguin Island boat ramp should be worth a crack for sand and yellowfin whiting and even King George are a chance, while good yellowfin whiting have been taking lures at beaches near the grain terminal on warmer days. Squid have also come from Point Peron. Saturday morning looks decent at this stage. Big thanks to Compleat Angler Rockingham for their tips!  
Perth catches
@matthewdeboer94 loves fishing for bream and a quick midday session recently nailed some good fish on the 3lb gear near Burswood on the Pygmy @bluelipbaits, Matt noted the amount of parasites on this fish, you can report signs of diseased fish to FishWatch and it's best to avoid eating fish that show signs of disease or parasites. 


Rottnest Island has fished well for King George whiting and a few have come from the inshore grounds around Mindarie and at the Three-Mile Reef. Tuna were still hanging around the West End at Rottnest and Samson fish have been making their presence felt there as well, along with the odd yellowtail kingfish. Squid have been caught off Mindarie and Hillarys and also off of South Fremantle and Bathers Beach. Off City Beach and Cottesloe, the 9-15m depths have produced plump sand whiting, which has been a great spot for a number of weeks now. Trolling the lower reaches of the Swan River has still been productive for chopper tailor. You're in luck if you were thinking of taking the boats out this weekend but make sure you venture out early on either Saturday or Sunday for the best windows before the windy Freo Doctor says g'day. 


The only thing more fat and chunky than the land-based section this week was the fish being landed. North Mole fished well for squid this week, from Rous Head right out to the end, and offered tailor after dark with mulies fished under glow stick proving effective. Squid have been a bit quieter at South Mole but are still worth at crack and good squid have come from Mews Road and Capo D’Orlando Drive in South Fremantle. Squid have also being caught off the Freo Sailing Club's rock walls along with snook and skippy. The north metropolitan beaches have offered chopper tailor and sand whiting. The Swan River was also firing for a host of species. Squid have made it into the river as far up as Claremont and one of the better spots has been the boat ramp near HMAS Leeuwin. Yellowfin whiting are also flashing on the sandflats and while flathead fishers have picked up a few as bycatch, one angler enjoyed an excellent session on them using both Eco Gear ZX and TT SwitchPrawn vibes near the Dome Cafe in East Fremantle earlier this week. The odd just-sized King George whiting has also been among the yellowfin whiting schools. The better numbers apparently came from East Fremantle and Mosman, but even in the upper reaches of the Swan they were annoying anglers by beating bream to baits and lures. Anywhere from the Fremantle Traffic Bridge up to Bayswater also held good flathead and in the Canning River they have pushed up past the Mt Henry Bridge. Decent flounder have been a welcome bycatch for flathead chasers in the lower reaches. Tailor were another species that have been widespread, from Fremantle Harbour up to the Causeway. Better spots have been Applecross, Canning Bridge, Point Walter and the Narrows, especially under the lights at night. Soapy mulloway have been among the tailor bycatch, with quite a few were being caught around Canning Bridge. Bream chasers have been faring well in both the Swan and Canning Rivers. The Canning River flats around Mt Henry Bridge have fished well for them, although undersized and just-sized tarwhine have been a nuisance, and bream have pushed as far up as Riverton. Garratt Road Bridge, Maylands, the Causeway and the Burswood flats have also fished well for them. Small hard-bodies like Eco Gear SX 40s have been effective on bream, along with sinking lures like the Zipbaits Zoea. Enjoy the good weather windows on both mornings this weekend. Best of luck if you're heading out and big thanks to Anglers Fishing World in Freo for their tips! 
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Catch Information

Baldchin Groper
Baldchin Groper

This Fishing Report was submitted on 11/17/2023 12:32:00 AM by Seamus and last updated on 11/20/2023 7:15:59 AM.


3/45 Northside Drive
Hillarys, WA AU

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