Welcome to the How to catch Squid around Melbourne guide. What’s not to love about targeting squid around Melbourne or Victoria. It’s a fun form of fishing that’s rapidly growing in popularity. Squid can be caught all year round and fresh calamari is so good to eat. There are key fundamentals to consistently catching squid and we will explain that in detail throughout this article. For the most part, squid loves shallow weedy areas and responds well to jigs in clear water conditions. Thankfully around Melbourne, there are plenty of locations for land-based anglers as well as boats and kayaks. We’re blessed with thriving and sustainable ecosystems such as Port Phillip Bay, Western Port, Corio Bay, and Mornington Peninsula which continue to produce squid in good numbers.
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Watch our detailed video on how to catch squid. Walking you through a step-by-step process to identify productive fishing grounds, and understand optimal depths to target squid. Whilst helping you how to choose a squid jig, followed with techniques to work the squid jig.
How to catch squid
squid fishing truly is a unique style of fishing. You can throw a squid jig overboard and let the natural currents do all the work for you. Or you can flick and retrieve just like you would when fishing a soft plastic. Allowing the jig to sink for a few seconds then adding wild repetitive lifts to imitate a wounded prawn. Throw in some decent length pauses and that’s often a recipe for success. A big difference when squid fishing is about control when getting a hit. The natural temptation is to strike but doing so will often lose you a squid. Instead, a subtle lift to keep line tension and a constant slow reel is all that’s required. It takes some practice to master but not too long to start gaining a good understanding.
Land based squid fishing guide from piers, jetties & rock-walls
Land-based squid fishing from jetties and rock walls has become very popular with local anglers. To have success with this form of fishing you will typically need a long fishing rod that will allow you to cast greater distances. These are generally between 8 and 9 feet in length. It’s also key to take a range of squid jigs in different weights and colours. Often you will need to cast far so jigs in 3 gram and 3.5 gram are great options if it’s not to shallow. Sometimes anglers attach a small lead sinker to their squid jig. Either a standard sinker attached to the front of the squid jig or lead moulded to the shape of the squid jig which slides onto the front of the jig. The theory behind this is to cast out further and get the squid jig down lower to the bottom where the action often is. When fishing a sandy bottom it also gives you more opportunities to throw in some erratic lifts followed by some pauses without getting snagged. I often choose just to throw out a heavier 3 or 3.5 gram which still managed to produce results. However, I was impressed with this technique which was working very well for those who look like they had been using this technique for some time.
Check out this Squid fishing Melbourne Guide video land-based fishing for squid at Mount Martha Rocks Mornington Peninsula
Kayak fishing for Squid around Melbourne
Targeting squid via a kayak has quickly become one of my favourite forms of fishing. Surprisingly you don’t need to venture out too far to be on good squid grounds. Areas such as Mornington, Corio Bay, Queenscliff and Point Cook are great for kayakers looking to catch squid. Fishing from a kayak is unique as you can fish with 1 rod in hand and other rods in rod holders as you slowly drift along. Both can be successful. I’m always looking for shallow weedy areas and generally prefer going out on clear days with low winds. How to catch Squid around Melbourne
Check out this video a master class on Kayak fishing for squid in Melbourne.
Squid fishing from a boat guide
Those with access to a boat are certainly lucky around Melbourne. There are many areas that consistently produce good numbers of squid. Most times of the year you will find me on my runabout boat in areas such as Point Cook, Queenscliff, Mornington, Wedge Spit, Kirks Point and Corio bay targeting squid. I’m always looking for shallow weedy areas and generally prefer going out on clear days with low winds. This way the water isn’t murky and squid seem to be more active.
Squid hotspots around Melbourne
Squid fishing Melbourne Guide well popular areas include Rye pier, Mount Martha rocks, Port Welshpool long pier, Queenscliff, Frankston pier, Sorrento pier, Blairgowrie pier, Flinders pier and Portsea piers. Surprisingly these spots are often jam-packed at night with keen anglers travelling far and wide fishing day and night. One particular night I arrived at Blairgowrie pier at 10.30 pm and could not get a spot on the pier which is a testament to how good the squid fishing is. Keep an eye on the wind and tidal changes, which will often encourage squid to migrate from one side of the bay to the other.
- Mount Martha
- Point Cook
- Corio Bay
- Rye pier
- Port Welshpool long pier
- Frankston pier
- Sorrento pier
- Blairgowrie pier
- Flinders pier
- Portsea piers
- St Leonards
- Clifton Springs
Squid jigs, colours and sizes
Click here to read our detailed guide on the best squid jigs in 2022. Some of our favourites have been the range of Yamashita squid jigs including the Egi-O Q Live. The Shimano Sephia, Shimano Egixile, Gan Craft Egi-ya, Rui squid jigs, Daiwa Nudes and the Savage Gear egi shrimps. Do colours and sizes really matter that much? It’s a debatable topic that draws mixed responses. Some anglers argue that certain colours and shapes consistently outfish others. I have seen this firsthand on many occasions, or maybe the simple logical conclusion is that certain variables work on certain days depending on the weather and conditions there presented with. For example, recently I was on a boat with a couple of mates. I was using a 2.5 gram Yamashita live in black. The others use other brands and colours. I bagged out in 30 minutes and the others didn’t catch a single squid. They then changed to a black squid jig and too started catching. So maybe there is something to this after all. At times it’s marketing hype that makes us more excited than the actual squid were targeting. I too get drawn into this hype and for whatever reason saw fit to stick with bright coloured jigs which worked a treat for me. Companies such as Yamashita have put some real science into selecting colours suitable for the time of day and conditions. Look that up online it’s quite fascinating.
The size and weight of the squid jig are vitally important. Heavier squid jigs generally sink faster. Here is a rough guide for you to think about. 2.5 grams descends 4 seconds per 1 meter, 3.0 grams descends 3 seconds per 1 meter, 3.5 grams descends 3.2 seconds per 1 meter, 4.0 grams descends 3 seconds per 1 meter.
Fishing techniques with squid jigs
Hopping technique – This is the most common technique. Simply cast your squid jig and wait a few seconds. Then do several quick erratic lifts wind in the slack. Pause for a few seconds to let the squid jig slowly sink once again. Repeat this process until your squid jig is back where you are fishing. The idea behind this technique is that you’re imitating a wounded shrimp or baitfish. Often as the squid jig is slowly drifting back to the bottom is when you get most of your catches. The slow roll – Cast your squid jig then wait a few seconds for it to sink. Then simply do a slow continuous retrieve of your reel known as the slow roll. This is a great technique to use when beginning. The good thing about both these techniques is that there easy to learn and master, and very effective.
Choosing the right squid jig
It can be an overwhelming task to visit your local tackle store and select a squid jig. The choice of brands, colours, patterns, sizes, weights, rattles and UV glows are almost endless. For the most part weights of squid jigs start at 2.5 grams and go up to 4.5 grams. I have been sticking to brightly coloured squid jigs going with oranges, pinks, and glow whites. Squid fishing Melbourne Guide
Buying a Squid EGI fishing rod
There are many rods on the market specifically for targeting Squid referred to as Egi rods. These rods are lightly tapered and offer superior sensitivity for targeting squid. They are longer in length and generally between 7 feet to 9 feet in length to allow for long casting distances. When buying an EGI rod the manufacturer will outline what size squid jigs they can handle. For example, I recently purchased a 762 light squid rod. This means the rod is 7 foot 6 inches in length and split into 2 pieces. L stands for light meaning it will work well with size 2.5 and size 3.0 squid jigs. When buying a quid rod stop and consider if you are land-based fishing for squid a longer squid rod between 8 – 9 feet is ideal. 8 foot 3 inches is a very popular length allowing you to cast long distances whilst having a nice action. When fishing from a boat or kayak shorter rod lengths are ideal.
Check out this recent video where I take a 12-year-old child and a beginner and teach them how to catch and cook squid.
I have recently been using the lower-end NS blackhole blackwater and Atomic Arrowz EGI rods. They have performed very well and highlight that you can get good performance out of affordable rods. As the table below highlights, entry-level EGI rods start under the $100 price mark. These might include the Rovex egi wrangler, Silstar egiist, Shimano Catana Egi CTA762MLEGI. Then slightly moving up the scale to a Shimano raider egi, Abu Garcia Veritas Egi Special, or Savage Gear LRF. These are typically 3-6 kilos and well suited to a 2500 or 3000 size reel. Then you can move up the budget scale to high-end options such as the Daiwa Emeraldas, Shimano Sephia, Calamaretti, Nitro custom, Major Craft Crostage CRX series, or Samurai Egi outfits. These rods are of high quality but come with a fitting price tag. Prices range from $180 all the way to $600. These would be coupled perfectly with a 2500 or 3000 size reel. Many of the manufacturers have reels to match the rods such as the Emereldas reels and Sephia BB reels.
These are rods custom-built for catching calamari. These are longer rods with components designed to make casting squid jigs a dream, whilst handling squid with ease. As you will see there is a large volume of custom squid rods available with varying budgets for consumers.
- Samurai EGI rod – $589
- Daiwa 20 emereldas air AGS – $499
- Yamashita EGIDO EGI-OH limited ed – $439
- RUI Eging Rod K-Crusher PRO-803M – $369
- Major Craft Crostage EGI – $319
- Daiwa 20 emereldas V – $299
- Daiwa 20 emereldas MX – $299
- Shimano Sephia BB 20 – $299
- Samaki Zing G3 EGI – $169
- Okuma Inked Egi Special Squid Fishing Rod – $169
- Storm Gomoku Ikasumi Egi – $149
- Atomic Arrowz EGI rod – $139
- Abu Garcia Veritas Egi Special – $139
- Shimano Raider Egi – $139
- NS blackhole Blackwater – $129 ( Best value for money squid rod )
- Shimano Catana Egi – $84
- Rovex Specialist Squid Wrangler – $79
I love to catch and cook squid, but it has also become my primary source of bait. When making calamari the first thing I do is cut off the tentacles and store them away in the fridge. This becomes my continual source of fresh bait for my next fishing outing. Most fish love squid as bait this might include flathead, snapper, whiting, gummy shark, and much more. Squid tentacles are a great option for bait as it stays on the hook and is a reliable choice for catching a few fish.
Yep, there seems to be a product for just about everything. One of the recent hypes is the Squid scent spray. Ecogear has developed an Egi Squid Scent Spray which suggests it can improve catch rates by 40%. That’s a bold claim but may be worthwhile giving a go if we can believe the marketing hype. ( Day time Egi Max Scent ) ( Nighttime Glow Max Scent ).
Squid hotspots around Melbourne & Victoria
There are many areas in Port Phillip Bay, Western Port, Mornington Peninsula and Corio Bay. Areas such as Rye, Frankston, Sorrento, Blairgowrie, Mount Martha, Flinders, Portsea, Ricketts Point, Queenscliff, Geelong, Altona, and Werribee. Squid fishing Melbourne Guide
I love fishing and I’m happy catching any type of fish regardless of the size or species. I love targeting squid, they’re easily accessible, they’re great fun to catch, and easily one of the best eating species to target. Remember to always check fishing regulations and catch limits in your area. Where possible practice catch and release you don’t need to hit your bag limits just keep a couple for a feed.
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