Fish Species Guide
Anderson Inlet, the most southerly mangrove habitat in Australia provides an excellent environment for Trevally, Flathead, Pinkie Snapper, mullet, Australian Salmon, Tailor, King George Whiting, Estuary Perch, Bream, Mulloway, gummy shark and elephant fish. At the mouth of Screw Creek, along Mahers Landing and Doyles Rd, there are natural bait grounds of Bass Yabbies and tube worm that can be pumped for recreational fishing.Use this fishing guide to help you get the most out of your fishing this summer.
Target Fish. Your guide to fishing where, when, with what and how! Check out the Inverloch fishing maps to find out where.
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Flathead are throughout Anderson Inlet and swim up onto the flats to feed on yabbies, small bait fish and crabs at the top of the tide. You will find them in the shallows and on the drop offs into the channels. The preferred rig is a running sinker with a 50-100 -cm leader with the best baits including pilchard fillets or pieces, squid strips and blue bait. Fish the run out tide as they will move from the shallows as the water depth decreases. The use of soft plastics allows you to walk and fish a greater area of the sand flats. Cast and allow your rigged soft plastic to fall to the bottom and with very short twitches, retrieve keeping the soft plastic close to the bottom. Land based, the sand flats from the angling club to the mouth of Screw Creek is a great area to target Flathead as well as Doyles Rd on the Venus Bay side.
Rod Bending Tip: Take your time. Pause between twitches keeping the line tight.
KING GEORGE WHITING
King George Whiting enjoy the weed beds between Pensioners Corner and the Old Kiosk Café, at Stevies Gutter and the bottom of the horseshoe at Doyles Rd, to the east of the Inverloch boat ramp and off the shell banks at Mahers Landing. The best bait is live bass yabbies and fresh pipi. Frozen pipi, tenderised squid strips, mussel and worm can be used as well. When using bass yabbies, a paternoster rig is preferred . If the whiting are tentative on the bite, a running sinker rig may be a better option. Red long shank size 6 is the best hook size but the KL 1/0 light circle is gaining popularity if the rod is in a holder. (remember using circle hooks,don’t strike as you will pull the hook) The best time is the last of the run out tide and the beginning of the run in.
Rod Bending Tip: When using pipi, ensure the guts (black stuff) of the pipi is positioned on the tip of the hook.
Pinkie Snapper enter Anderson Inlet in late November and early December. You will locate them between Mahers Landing and Nolans Bluff. Pinkies to 35 school up at this time of year and move east towards the mouth of the Tarwin River but don’t be surprised to hook fish to 70 cm this year. Bets baits are pilchards, filleted or cubed, US squid, saury and fresh fish fillets. Use a running sinker set-up with a leader of 75-100 cm with 4/0 Octopus or Octopus Circle hooks. The run in tide is the pick of the tides.
Rod Bending Tip: Drag setting is important so as the snapper will not feel tension on the first run. A bait runner reel allows you to have duel drag settings. The rear drag setting is for when the rod is in the rod holder and the front drag for strike.
Australian Salmon are smaller during the summer months but school in large numbers. Land based, spinning metal lures at the mouth of Andersons Inlet, from the Inverloch jetty and in front of the A frame house at Mahers Landing. From boats, trolling metal lures in the main channel, from the mouth of Anderson Inlet through the snags past Stevies Gutter and up to Mahers Landing. While bait fishing, salmon will always be a bi-catch when using pipi, pilchard, white and blue bait.
Trevally, like salmon can be found throughout Anderson Inlet in the summer months. Up to 1 kg, the put up a great fight and are a lot of fun to catch. Trevally will take most baits, but white bait and pilchard fillets produce the best results. Outside Stevie’s Gutter, and along the green buoys to Nolan’s Bluff are the pick of the areas if you enjoy a feed of Trevally fillets.
Estuary Perch move deep into the inlet and up the creeks and rivers during the summer months. Target them in Screw Creek, around the Venus Bay islands, the mouth of the Tarwin River. As the water cleans up, they will progress up above the road bridge to the top reaches of the Tarwin River. Estuary Perch are low light feeding fish, so fish around the snags and under the river gums that shade the water. Bass yabbies as they are the best live bait, with prawn and worm being the best of the frozen baits.
Rod Bending Tip: The migration of the spawning Estuary Perch usually occurs in late spring. Due to high rainfall continuing in summer, expect to locate many perch around the Venus Bay Islands.
Bream The Tarwin River above the highway bridge and Screw Creek are the premier areas for bream. Lure selection is important as well as fishing tight in on the structure. Best lures are surface poppers and shallow diving minnows. From the vast range of soft plastics, prawn and worm style soft plastics can be used on a light or resin jig head. Fish the run out tide forcing the bream to move out from tight in the structure and onto the edge of the first drop off.
Rod Bending Tip: For bait anglers, live bass yabbies and blue crab, peeled prawn and worm fished under a float is the preferred rig and bait.
Gummy Shark Night fishing for gummy sharks is very rewarding. The mouth of Anderson Inlet, Mahers Landing and the Golf Tee (near Nolan’s Bluff) are the choice locations to target them. After studying the hole and gutter formations at low tide, the Venus Bay beaches is a great land based surf beach option. On the surf beaches, the best time is the rising tide around the full and new moons. In Andersons Inlet, fish the top of the tide releasing berley as the tide runs out. All the fish must come back into the main channels as the sand flats become exposed. Best baits include whole pilchards, whole squid, saury, eel and fresh Trevally fillets. The running sinker rig is preferred with a 1 metre leader double the breaking strain of your main line.
Rod Bending Tip: If you are being troubled by rays, convert to a single dropper rig with about a metre from the swivel to the sinker to lift the bait off the bottom.
Mulloway Although not targeted by many anglers, they are in the Anderson Inlet system throughout the year. Many mysterious bust offs after strong head shakes and a blistering runs indicates their presence. Preparation is the key. Catching fresh live bait (such as mullet) or fresh squid is important as well as selecting times around the new moon and full moon. Target areas are at the entrance to Stevies Gutter, the bottom of the horseshoe and in the shallows around Nolans Bluff. Spend the time to check your rigs and bait Once your baits are set, keep your boat noise to a minimum and be prepared to leave your bait out. The more times you retrieve to check your bait the more you will spook the fish.