What’s Biting: Scott Coghlan reveals the best spots to cast your line across Western Australia

Scott Coghlan The West Australian
Nathan Wignell with a surprise south coast gummy shark.
Camera IconNathan Wignell with a surprise south coast gummy shark. Credit: Supplied

Nathan Wignell and his son Dave headed out east of Albany to find some new ground.

A quick text to a very good friend put them onto some nice coral and a nice showing on the sounder.

Nathan was fishing with a 27kg line on a standard paternoster rig baited with local squid when he hooked something decent in around 65m.

He was unsure what it was and made several calls as to its identity, none of which proved to be correct.

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Nathan got a big surprise when it revealed itself to be a solid gummy shark, one of the tastier catches you can have.

The usual mix of southern reef species were also caught and a great day was had by all onboard.

While it was his dad’s day, Dave also did well and is a keen young angler who has started his own YouTube channel called Davo Fishing.

A catch to remember and Nathan has also won a $50 Halco lure pack.

Get in quick for early Carnarvon trip

If you’ve ever wanted to fish out of Carnarvon, then a live-aboard trip with Top Gun Charters next month might be just the ticket.

The beautifully appointed and comfortable Top Gun II is usually operating at the Abrolhos Islands at this time of year, but changes to fishing rules in the area have resulted in a change in its fishing seasons.

As a result, it has an early trip out of Carnarvon from April 1-6 and there are still last-minute vacancies aboard the 21m Westcoaster available at a discounted price for readers of The West Australian at just $2000 per head.

Top Gun II at anchor off Carnarvon.
Camera IconTop Gun II at anchor off Carnarvon. Credit: Supplied

Anglers will potentially visit several incredible locations off this coast depending on the weather, including the impressive Bernier, Dorre and Dirk Hartog islands, all offering exciting fishing for a wide range of species.

Anglers would expect to catch pelagics like Spanish mackerel, tuna and wahoo, and possibly even billfish, while bottom fishing is likely to produce pink snapper, red emperor and rankin cod, to name but a few species found in these waters.

Another option could be to head north along the coast and fish the famous Quobba stretch around Cape Cuvier.

Meals and fishing gear are provided, with the trip departing on April 1 and returning to town late on April 5, with anglers able to sleep onboard that night before heading home.



FADs: Dolphinfish.

Rottnest Island offshore: Yellowfin tuna, southern bluefin tuna, yellowtail kingfish, wahoo, Spanish mackerel.

Five Fathom Bank: Spanish mackerel, southern bluefin tuna.

Mewstone: Tailor.

Fremantle inshore: Squid, sand whiting.

Cottesloe inshore: Sand whiting.

Grant Street: Tailor.

Ocean Reef: Tailor, herring, whiting.

Lower Swan: Blue swimmer crabs, tailor, giant herring, flathead, squid.

Upper Swan: Black bream.

Peel-Harvey Inlet: Herring, tailor, yellowfin whiting.

Murray River: Black bream.

Mandurah offshore: Spanish mackerel, southern bluefin tuna.

Mandurah inshore: Herring, snook, skippy, sand whiting.

Mandurah beaches: Tailor, whiting, herring, mulloway.

Dawesville Cut: Herring.


Limestone Head: Salmon.

Caseys: King George whiting.

Continental Shelf: Hapuka.

Coral Ground: Red snapper, queen snapper, pink snapper, dhufish, samson fish.

King George Sound: Squid, herring.

Oyster Harbour: Herring.

Salmon Holes: Salmon, herring.

Cheynes Beach: Salmon, herring.

Back Beach: Salmon.

Mermaids: Salmon.

Fosters Beach: Salmon.

Reef Beach: Salmon, herring.

Wilson Inlet: Blue swimmer crabs.

Ocean Beach: Yellowfin whiting, silver bream.


Offshore: Spanish mackerel, yellowfin tuna.

Wagoe: Pink snapper, tailor.

Lucky Bay: Mulloway.

Gorges: Tailor.

Wittecarra: Herring, dart, mulloway, tailor.

Murchison River: Fingermark, javelin fish, cod, tailor, black bream, mulloway.


Rosily Cay: Queenfish, giant trevally, Spanish mackerel.

Rosily Shoals: Rankin cod, cod, coral trout.

Supermarket: Spanish mackerel, yellowfin tuna.

Brewis Reef: Golden trevally, shark mackerel.

Thevenard Island shore: Queenfish, golden trevally, giant trevally.

Bessieres Island: Shark mackerel, spangled emperor, golden trevally.


Offshore: Spangled emperor, blue-line emperor.

Roebuck Bay: Blue salmon, threadfin salmon, golden trevally, permit, tripletail, northen mulloway, fingermark.

Crab Creek: Threadfin salmon, barramundi.

Dampier Creek: Barramundi, blue salmon.

Port Jetty: Queenfish, trevally, barramundi.

Town Beach Jetty: Queenfish, trevally.

Port Smith: Cod, mangrove jack.

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