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Recfishwest's State-wide Fishing Report 16 December 2022 ūüé£

 | By Seamus on 12/16/2022 2:21:15 AM | Views (531)
Recfishwest Newsletter
Recfishwest
Fishing Report
16/12/22
Jake Rotham @rothy_mate recently jumped on the flathead bandwagon in the Swan River and captured this great underwater snap of this awesome species in the shallows. 
Our contributors
Sam Russell
John Dempsey
Peter Fullarton
Sedin Hasanovic 
G'day <>,

If you've got a cracking fish photo you want to send in remember to keep sending us your catches by tagging #recfishwest in your online posts! You can also follow and private message your catches to our Instagram page @recfishwest and make sure you let us know where and how you caught it!  

Keep up to date with events, clinics, news and amazing catches across WA by following our Instagram page @recfishwest and give our Recfishwest Facebook page a like!

For your photos to appear in the weekly fishing report, please make sure they reflect Recfishwest's responsible fish handling practices (fish held horizontally, no blood, hand under the belly, no fingers in gills, etc) just like the images below.

If you're planning to head out this week, stay safe, take plenty of photos and have fun! 

Jarrad Lawford

RECFISHWEST FISHING REPORT EDITOR

Pic of the Week!

Simon Holland @southernforests_angler has been on fire on the fly recently down at beautiful Big Brook Dam in the Pemberton region. This big fat rainbow trout was one of many caught by the freshwater fly master, with another solid stonker brown trout being landed. 

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Fishing for Science fish of the week -  RED EMPEROR  



Check out the Fishing for Science fish of the week, supported by the Fishing for Science team in Dampier and funded by Woodside Energy.

Check in each week for more species-specific facts and stay tuned for exciting news from our Fishing for Science initiative! 

Find out more about the Fishing for Science program here!

 

Broome catches
Tripletail are doing the rounds close to the inshore bombies and this great snap was taken by @broome_fishing_club who are having their Christmas tinny competition on Saturday! Make sure you register at the fishing club bar by the end of today! 

Boats

The Broome Fishing Club are having their Christmas Tinny Competition this Saturday, 17 December and you can still register for this at the fishing club bar by the end of today. Members pay $10 while non-members pay $15, kids fish for free! Presentations for this will occur on Sunday, 18 December at 4:30pm so make sure you pay their website a visit for more details! 

The offshore wind this week has been pretty heinous, but the crew from Tackle World Broome said a lot of boats headed up the Dampier to try and find the 1m+ barra that have been doing the rounds recently and a lot of them were rewarded with more great catches this week. A lot of mangrove jack are also popping up in the same snaggy territory. Northern mulloway were still caught around Roebuck Bay, along with the regular catches of threadfin salmon and smaller barramundi around 70-80cm. A few red emperor, crimson snapper and coral trout are still popping up for boats that have a quick drop on the structure before moving, while tripletail are turning up in more numbers around the bombies. Crab Creek produced decent muddies once again and more skippers seem to be on the prowl for them, with most coming home with at least one big buck that are generally quite full of meat. There are some lighter winds forecast from midday on Sunday which should make early next week quite pleasant on the water. Some moderate westerlies will roll through tomorrow. 

Shore-based

Once again, Dampier Creek was the most reliable go-to spot for landing your larger 1m+ barra and decent mangrove jack up to 45cm within the sticks. Roebuck Bay and Telegraphs were productive spots for threadfin, barramundi in smaller sizes and blue nose salmon this week via vibe and deeper diving lures. Crab Creek has been the most reliable spot for land-based mud-crabs via hooking over the past fortnight. Good numbers of whiting are still popping up at the The Town Beach jetty and the evenings tend to be the best time. As always, thanks to the pros from Tackle World Broome for their tips this week. 
Exmouth catches
@ningalooflyfishing have been having great success catching well-sized permits lately! This nice catch from Dougal Rillstone was caught around the flats of the Gulf. Make sure you check out their Instagram page!  

Boats

The billfish action this week has improved significantly as the water temperature is starting to heat up. Thanks to these changing conditions, there have also been solid numbers of yellowfin tuna and dolphin fish being caught, with a lot of bait balls and diving birds providing clear directions for skippers on where to troll and flick lures. Bluebone and Spangled emperor have been caught in decent numbers for those targeting the reefs around the Mildura wreck, as well as queenfish and a few surprise giant herring. For boats targeting yellowfin whiting in the shallower depths, they have been running in great numbers around the bottom of the Gulf and this area should consistently produce great numbers of whiting over the coming months. Out in the Muirons, mackies are turning up in good numbers via trolling and also around the artificial King Reef, which is quickly becoming one of the most productive spots only 6km north-east of Exmouth. This spot has also produced some big golden trevally this week and the men's line class world record catch for this species came off this reef from talented young angler Max Grasso, with a 13kg whopper. There are some calmer days rolling through across the next week, which should make it pleasant on the water. 

Shore-based

The Spangled emperor are still running well on the western side near the lighthouse and around the Mildura Wreck. The lighter winds over the coming week or so should see more fishers flicking around the inshore reefs in search of these great species. The marina has produced the goods this past week for a wide variety of decent catches, with mangrove jack, trevally and cod all caught in decent sizes on a variety of lures and soft plastics. The bottom of the Gulf has quickly become a very productive spot for yellowfin whiting on the surface, with those warmer conditions settling in and bringing this area to life for land-based fishers. Some lighter winds and warmer days will start rolling through from tomorrow and kudos to the Tackle World Exmouth crew for their tips. Make sure you pay them a visit if you're heading out and ask them for any advice if targeting new species. 
 

Tips from the experts on how to avoid shark bite-off 

Want the best advice from fishing professionals on how to avoid this when fishing? Click on the article link below for numerous unique tips from accomplished fishers and tackle store experts.
All around Western Australia and particularly heading north of Geraldton, a lot of fishers know the frustration of losing prized hooked fish to sharks.

Many of us have experienced the sickening thump on the line, as the rod locks over with the line sizzling off the spool¬†as your would-be catch¬†gets engulfed, leaving just a lifeless head to be reeled in. It‚Äôs that or worse still ‚Äď a clean bite-off with all your rigs going with the ‚Äėtax-man‚Äô as well as your fish. ¬†

That's why we've picked the clever brains of Steve Riley ‚Äď owner of Exmouth Tackle & Camping Supplies and the staff¬†from Tackle World Exmouth¬†to help you best avoid shark bite-off.

Click here for unique pro tips on avoiding shark bite-off when fishing. 
 
Kalbarri catches


Boats

Not many boats decided to venture out this week because it's been blowing a gale. While no one has been trolling, there have been a lot of tuna spotted boiling the water near the cliffs at Red Bluff, which should be a great spot once the weather improves. Most boats that have headed out have been targeting crays and they have been popping up in reasonable numbers. Some skippers reported around six in most of their pots, others none and the lucky few managed to bag out with all pots dropped. One boat that dropped pots slightly north towards Horrocks managed to pull 40 crays in one pot this week, so it is definitely a matter of persistence. Some calmer easterlies over the next few mornings are looking like the best windows for dropping and pulling pots. 

Shore-based

Tailor are still the go-to species to target off the beaches at the moment. Dean from Kalbarri Sports and Dive reported a lot of anglers have had great success around Red Bluff, with good numbers rolling through at an average size of about 45cm. This area has also seen great numbers and sizes of dart rolling through too. Areas such as Wittecarra also provided good sizes of tailor with a few appearing in the 60-70cm bracket. There wasn't too many mulloway caught this week though as it's been blowing in the arvos and night fishing has been tough. A few kids managed to pull in some decent bream from the jetty earlier this week. The calmer easterlies over the next few mornings should provide good windows off the beaches so best of luck if you're heading out for a flick. 
Geraldton catches
A few nice silver ghosts rolled through this week in Geraldton, with @matt_brandenburg and @mat.svenson having a great session flicking in the surf. 


Boats

Another windy week made it tough for the boaties but it hasn't stopped them cruising out to drop and pull pots. Most of the crays have moved offshore now and have started to commonly appear in the 20m depths. The odd skipper is still getting crays inshore, but a majority have already moved out and those 18-25m depths will soon start to be the prime real estate for more catches. Many boats have been doing laps trolling lures over the cray ground, but no tuna or mackies have been turning up this week. For boats staying in close chasing tailor or mulloway off the inshore gutters and reef breaks, around Greenough, Tarcoola and Drummonds have been decent spots. The bay within Drummonds has also been solid for herring, but there was a lot of loose floating weed making it tough for lures so baits are the way to go. There are easterly winds rolling through for the demersal season opening back up but they are not great for bottom fishing in Geraldton because the reef ledges tend to move in north-west or south-east directions, making drifting tough. Saturday, Sunday and Monday morning are quite calm though so best of luck if you're planning on punching out. 

Shore-based

It has been windy this week but around Greenough was great in the morning for tailor. The second set of rocks across the river has been the most productive spot and the mornings has been the best window for both tailor and pike. Flat Rocks was another great spot for both species this week. South Gates in the mornings off the shallow reef has also seen good numbers of tailor around 35cm, but occasionally up to 60cm. Up to Tarcoola it has also been okay for tailor, but the average size was only 30-40cm. Up at Drummonds in the bay off the reefs there was a lot of loose floaty weed which made casting lures tough, but great numbers of herring are turning up for fishers using bait. A couple of decent mulloway approaching 15kg were caught by Mat Svenson and Matt Brandenburg earlier this week and most of the mulloway being caught have been landed in the evenings. The low tides are more prevalent in the morning, so walking over the shallow reefs is much easier before the wind spikes in the evening. One 85-year-old fishing veteran has done very well fishing at South Gates for tailor by standing on the flat reef and flicking baits and lures into the surf most mornings. Big thanks to Geraldton Sports Centre for their tips!   
Lancelin catches


Boats

The white crays are finally on the move and a lot of skippers and divers started to see some good numbers last Friday. Pots have been steadily producing decent numbers all week, with some holding up to 30 crays. Most of the fishers this week at the White Bank reported the need to only pull one or two pots to reach the boat limits for the day. Throughout Thursday however, catches have fallen in close and only the pots out in the 20-30m depths are picking up crays. Given the demersal season has kicked back into gear today, we are expecting a big turnout this weekend with the weather looking great. Lancelin Angling Club have their season opener - The Commodores Cup - on Saturday and there is certainly going to be plenty of boats heading to Lancelin to avoid the metro boat ramp crush, with a great forecast for Sunday. Water temperatures are also on the up nearing 22 degrees and there have been some very early reports of school mackerel, while tuna have been mostly sighted out from the 30m depths.

Shore-based

Herring have been showing increasing numbers and the average size of the fish were certainly impressive this week. They have been big enough to be tackling whole pilchards and lures cast for tailor, with a lot of 30cm specimens providing great fun for anglers. There have been excellent numbers of chopper tailor along the open beaches, while the gutters along Lancelin Defence Range and Wedge Island area have also been producing a larger class of fish. A few mulloway were reported this week, with some mid-morning fish well over a metre during the calmer conditions. Skippy and tarwhine have been caught by casting near reefy areas. Recent weeks have also seen several incidental catches of pink snapper from the near shore, with one large one caught on a whiting rig! The drone and beach fishers are looking good for some drops this weekend too, with easterly winds predicted throughout the next few mornings to aid in getting lines out. Big thanks to Lancelin's fishing guru Peter Fullarton for his tips as always!
 

Scott's Species - buffalo bream - tough to fight and chew, but great fun for kids!

While they aren't good eating, buff bream make up for this by being a very hard-fighting species if you manage to hook one. 
Buffalo bream might not be desirable for the plate, but if you hook a larger one via a piece of weed, algae, bait or burley...you'll certainly know about it!

Scott Coghlan discusses this abundant species this week and why they are a great species to target for kids throughout the lower half of WA. 

Click here to read Scott Coghlan's article on buffalo bream. 
 
Esperance catches
Tyson TNT Tietjens @tnttietjens is quickly becoming the bream king around Esperance, with another great session this week seeing multiple 40cm+ whoppers caught. 


Boats

Another windy week, but it didn't stop boats from having some great sessions. Monday was the best day and many boats bagged out on nannies near the islands, with one skipper reporting 24 nannies between three fisherman. Among those catches was a 3.5kg harlequin, which is easily one of the biggest seen for a while. Queen snapper were also common up to 8kg. A couple of bigger Sambos turned up wide near Termination Island, while Sunk Rocks was also another very good nannie spot this week. For boats sticking in close, around Bandy Creek is a great spot for King George whiting around the 30cm mark, along with the occasional flounder and bigger flathead. The stronger easterly winds should start to drop off by Tuesday morning thankfully.

Shore-based

Another decent week on the land-based front. There have been gummies caught along the beaches at 14 Mile, Roses and Warrenup. Moving further east, salmon have been in fantastic numbers and it doesn't matter where you go as schools have been prolific. The shallow shoreline around Thomas River also produced decent mulloway up to 80cm. Bandy Creek has been the go-to spot for solid King George whiting numbers recently, although most of their sizes have been usually undersize and those that were size generally slotted around the 30cm mark. A few flounder, skippy and flathead have been popping up in the same area, making it a great spot for mixed bags. Good numbers of herring have also been caught off the Observatory Beach. The usual squid and herring are as reliable as always off the Tanker Jetty. The first stretch of Wylie Bay past the weed beds has been the most consistent spot for sand whiting in the mornings. Tyson Tietjens continues to make a strong case for being the bream king around Esperance, with another solid session finding the 40cm+ beasts in the sticks on surface lures. Those easterly winds should calm down over the next few days until Wednesday morning and make sure you visit the pros at Southern Sports and Tackle if heading out. Remember to send through your catches in Esperance to our Instagram page @recfishwest. 
Great Southern catches
Shabir Vagh @shabeerman caught an absolute stunner of a mirror dory when jigging in 300m+ depths a couple of weeks ago and now he's backed it up with this lovely bluey via jigging close to the mainland. 


Boats

Not a very busy week thanks to the weather unfortunately. Those rough easterlies will stick around until at least Tuesday and most boats stayed in close and had a rough time. The bottom bashing out deep was quiet, but the squid and King George whiting were in great numbers despite the conditions and you do not need to find sheltered waters at the moment to go home with a feed of either species. The KG's have also been turning up quite shallow, with many skippers finding good hauls in depths of less than 5m. Shabir Vagh (pictured above) landed himself a beauty of a blue groper in close to the mainland on the jig which was a great effort. Will be pretty tough for the boats until that easterly drops off around Tuesday though. 

Shore-based

Relatively quiet for the land-based fishers this week too. Fishing around the tides and sunrise has been quite effective for the bream inside the King and Kalgan river. Mulloway have been caught as well inside the Kalgan generally further up on baits. Herring are still performing well along the rockwalls and jetties close to town in Albany when burley has been used, along with skippy thrown in the mix. With those easterlies sticking around for the next few days, pay the pros at Trailblazers in Albany a visit and they will provide some good tips on where to go if you want to flick a line. 
South West catches


Boats

It's been a busy week for the boats with most of them opting to start targeting crays. Solid numbers of crays are starting to turn up in the 18-22m depths, while a lot of boats have also been having good luck drifting for squid around the 10m depths. Plenty of dhufish have been spotted in close, with a lot of boats and divers finding good schools in 10-12m depths. In closer, the crabbing will improve once tides sort themselves out. Myalup seemed to be herring city this week, with schools spotted in abundance and burley sending them wild. The soapie mulloway are also still going nuts off the beaches headed north, with 30cm catches in plague proportions via baits and lures. Most of the mornings until midday will be very pleasant over the next week, perfect timing for the demersal season kicking back into gear today. 

Shore-based

The yellowfin whiting action around Australind was still red hot this week. Just try to find the calmer waters and they tend to be everywhere. The experts at Whitey's Tackle have said the northern beaches are being swarmed by the 30cm soapie mulloway, with some anglers catching upwards of 30 in one session. For those chasing blue swimmer crabs, scooping for them on the end of the tide is your best bet, but throughout this week this has generally been later at night around 11pm right at the end of full tide. This action will improve once the tides sort themselves out. There weren't too many tailor caught over the past week but they did turn up in the 30-40cm sizes around Buffalo Beach and Myalup. Squid as always are performing best closer to Busselton off the jetty. We're in for some beautiful land-based fishing weather over the next week, with moderate to calm easterlies rolling through most mornings. 

Freshwater

The talented anglers from @2_oceans_tackle had a memorable day down south recently, catching a smorgasbord of freshwater beauties such as ex-broody rainbow and brown trout along with redfin. 
Pemberton is continuing to fish well especially for rainbow and brown trout in Big Brook Dam. The fish in the dam have been hungry and active of recent, with those targeting trout on fly having the most success in the afternoons on fish upwards of 50cm in length. Fishing in the rivers and streams in the region has continued to be productive, but smaller yearling-sized fish are the most common capture currently. The Blackwood has continued to fish well with this year’s stockings of yearling trout adapting to the system quickly and providing good fun for anglers. Wellington Dam has continued to be the most consistent dam for redfin perch these last few months. Captures of redfin to 40cm+ are common, with plenty in the 30-40cm size still coming in each week. The amount of water in this dam may put off anglers, but those who have put in the effort, covered ground, and switched up their techniques (trolling, bottom bouncing soft plastics) have come up trumps. Harvey Dam and the river have produced some decent captures of redfin, but the reports of larger fish that these systems are normally known for have been quiet of recent. Drakesbrook has had consistent captures of trout in the mornings and afternoons with some larger fish to 40cm becoming more common. Reports are that the fishing during midday in the Weir has been quite slow, with most fishers having success in the early morning when they can see the trout rise and target them with their casts.
 
Mandurah and surrounds


Mandurah

The crays are slowly starting to increase in numbers and the best returns have come to the divers. Ash Ramm from Tackle World Miami jumped in the drink recently and said there were plenty around the 20-30m depths. North of Mandurah tends to do better for crays at the moment as closer to town is still hit and miss. The new moon next Friday should kick it off around Mandurah, which is perfect timing for the Christmas feasts. Most of the crays being found around Mandurah at the moment are around the inshore shallow reefs, while areas down south off Melrose and Florida Beach have performed well. Over the next couple of weeks it will be time to move pots further out past Five Fathom. Not many boats are opting for trolling at the moment, but the tuna action should kick off once it warms up a bit more. Even the King George whiting were quiet this week. The mornings from Saturday right through to Tuesday are all expecting light easterlies, so it should be great boating weather combined with the re-opening of the demersal fishing until it closes again from February 1 to March 31. Thanks to Ash Ramm from Tackle World Miami for his tips! 
 

SECRET HARBOUR / PORT KENNEDY / ROCKINGHAM / SAFETY BAY / WARNBRO SOUND

Around Rockingham and Point Peron have seen great catches of white crays this week, with a lot of skippers pulling in brimming pots from depths of 18-24m. They seem to be moving out deeper now and this depth range should be a popular target for skippers over this weekend. Tailor are still popping up across the beaches around Falcon, Melros, White Hills, Preston and Golden Bay up to about 50cm, with 35-40cm catches common. The mulloway action slowed down a bit this week, although they have been turning up in the evenings up to about 90cm. The squidding action closer to Point Peron has been great over the past week and they have been turning up in the 3-6m depths in the sheltered areas and also out deeper between 8-12m. Coventry Reef has been the best spot for herring and pike, but burley is recommended for bringing in the large schools. Once again, most of the bigger Sambos and yellowtail kingfish were reported closer to Rotto, although a few smaller yellowtail were caught further north around Mewstones and Stragglers. 
Perth catches
The whites have kicked into gear around the metro regions, with a lot of pots brimming with catches this past week. Areas off Hillarys, Two Rocks and Rockingham are starting to fill pots in depths of 18-25m as seen here from the crew at @fishinwishinlife_official


Boats

The whites are finally here. We've seen a lot of boats rolling through in front of our Hillarys office with solid hauls of whites and most of these brimming pots are coming from the depths of 20-30m. These depths out from Freo, Rockingham, Mindarie and Two Rocks are all starting to produce the goods also as the crays start to head into deeper waters. Persistence is key and some skippers will come back with only one or two in a pot then bag out the next day. For those targeting King George or sand whiting, around Windmills and the shipping channel have been productive spots. The squid have tended to appear in deeper depths over the patchy weed, with 8-12m having good rates of success if you wanted some squid rings or prefer to use them as fresh bait chasing demersals now that the season has opened back up today. The tuna have slowed down on the troll, but there have been sightings and reports of them out further west and south of Rottnest in 30-40m depths. Yellowtail kingfish are being caught around Duffield Ridge and the artificial towers. Sambos are still floating around at Stragglers on lures from skippers targeting tailor, which are also popping up on occasions in the 50cm+ greenback size. As for river fishing, further up was the preferred mulloway spot this week, while the crabbing action improved significantly for boats generally headed north of Canning Bridge. There are some nice easterly winds rolling through from Saturday morning through to Tuesday morning which should make it pleasant on the water, so brace yourselves for some busy launch ramps and enjoy yourselves as the demersal season opening back up from December 16 was a great outcome for recreational fishers. 

Shore-based

If you're targeting tailor off the metro beaches, they are still in great numbers and have been popping up everywhere. Most of the better catches in numbers came from the beaches and groynes around Freo, Cottesloe, Scarborough, Floreat, Yanchep and Two Rocks. They are also still popping up in the river most commonly in that 30-40cm size bracket generally around the Mosmans and Claremont area by bait casting mulies. There have also been heaps of mulloway caught at night time off the jetties further up river from the Canning Bridge headed north. This week also saw the flathead numbers skyrocket from pretty much all of the sand flats in the river thanks to that warmer weather finally sticking around. The yellowfin whiting are also popping up in the same areas, along with flounder commonly taking soft plastics flicked out for the flatties. Blue swimmers also started picking up this week and both the boats and scoopers pulled in some decent catches. If you are planning to go for blue swimmers, generally anywhere from the Canning Bridge heading up to the city has produced the goods, although they are being caught as far up as Bayswater in decent sizes. Thanks to the guys from Anglers Fishing World in Freo for their tips and the mornings over the next few days are looking better for land-based fishing with the easterly winds coming through. 
 
 
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Recfishwest · 3/45 Northside Drive Hillarys · Perth, WA 6025 · Australia

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Catch Information

Species:
Barramundi
Barramundi

Brown Trout
Brown Trout

Coral Trout
Coral Trout

Crimson Snapper
Crimson Snapper

Dhufish
Dhufish

Flounder
Flounder

Golden Trevally
Golden Trevally

Mulloway
Mulloway

Pike
Pike

Queen Snapper
Queen Snapper

Queenfish
Queenfish

Rainbow Trout
Rainbow Trout

Red Emperor
Red Emperor

Redfin Perch
Redfin Perch

Spangled Emperor
Spangled Emperor

Threadfin Salmon
Threadfin Salmon

Tripletail
Tripletail

Whiting
Whiting

Yellowfin Tuna
Yellowfin Tuna

Yellowfin Whiting
Yellowfin Whiting

This Fishing Report was submitted on 12/16/2022 2:21:15 AM by Seamus and last updated on 12/16/2022 12:00:59 PM.


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3/45 Northside Drive
Hillarys, WA AU


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