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Thursday, January 20, 2022
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January Fishing Report

We’re full steam into the summer fishing season, as most of the popular fish hit their peak of prominence in Queenscliff waters.

King George Whiting has hit its full stride and will continue to be prominent until late April. Fishing charters will be launching out of Queenscliff regularly if you’re interested in taking your fishing beyond the shore and into deep.

Coming into January, deep sea fishing is going to be very rewarding. If you’ve got access to a boat it’s certainly recommended to go try your luck during January this summer.

Humans aren’t the only ones to notice a bigger influx of fish coming into the region. As you may have seen in the news last month, there was a very unfortunate incident at Ocean Grove main beach involving a few brave locals and a shark. Thankfully those involved will make a full recovery from the injuries they sustained.

This incident is in itself evidence that the summer influx of fish has begun.

FISH OF THE MONTH: Bluefin Tuna

Not regularly spotted until now is the Bluefin Tuna. This is a deep-sea species so you’ll most likely need access to a boat to have a go at these monsters. The fact that will have anglers grinning from ear to ear is how big this species can grow to.

They’re more commonly found at 1.8 metres in length and 100 kg, but with a lifespan of up to 40 years, the biggest of the Bluefin Tuna to ever be caught (in Australia) comes in at a whopping 271kg.

WHEN AND WHERE TO FIND THEM:

The Southern Bluefin Tuna will migrate over vast distances and are found at depths of over 500m. If you happen to see one closer to shore you’ve most likely spotted a juvenile, as they tend to stick within coastal and continental shelf waters.

It’s within their nature to feed in large schools, so once you’ve spotted one, there should be plenty more around.

WHAT EQUIPMENT:

When you’re targeting any species of fish via the trolling method it’s suggested to go for a smaller outfit. Aim for a 10-15 size reel with a 10-15kg overhead rod at around 5 foot in length.

If you’ve gone for the casting for this species you need to be prepared to be able to lift up to 30+ kg’s. With that in mind you’re going to need heavier, high quality set-up. Try a 5000 or 4500 sized reel, with 30lb braid, and an 8-10kg spin rod around 6-7 foot in length.

THE RIGHT TECHNIQUES:

With a fish of this size, when you get a bite, you’ll know about it. Make sure to wait for your rod to bend before setting the hook. It’s ok to let the fish take over 200 meters of line before you start the long effort of reeling back in.

In the same token, don’t let it run for too long. With so much power behind it, 200 meters of line will disappear very quickly.

The main aim of reeling in bigger species is to let the fish tire itself out before you reel it in.

SUMMARY:

If you’re lucky enough to land one of these beauties there’s a few tips you need to follow before you can start to cook them up.

It’s best to bleed tuna as soon as possible. Two inches behind the pectoral fins you’ll need to slice through its main arteries. As soon as this is completed put the fish on ice.

The bluefins have a mild to medium flavour and are best grilled or barbecued either side, but left rare in the middle.

We hoped you enjoyed a closer look into the deep sea fishing Queenscliffe has to offer in January. Don’t forget to send in a photo and description of your catch to feature in next month’s edition!

Sean Harken

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