Welcome to the Elephant Fish Fishing Guide. Elephant Fish get their name thanks to their unique look and elephant trunk-like snout. They use this snout to find and feed on small fish. They share similar characteristics of a shark with fins and scaleless bodies. They are intriguing fish with a distinctive look that makes them truly unique. They do however have good fighting qualities and are much fun to catch on light gear. They are seasonal fish that come into select areas within Western Port and Port Phillip Bay throughout March and May to spawn.


Workshops | Giveaways | Podcasts | Competitions | Reports | Maps | GPS Marks | Rigging Tutorials | Sounder School | Exclusive Footage | Tackle Talks | Gear Guides | Kayak Club | Much More

Become a FishingMad Member

Elephant Fish Facts & Catch Limits

  • Elephant Fish has the scientific name of Callorhinchus milii.
  • There are no minimum size limits
  • Daily bag limit of one elephant fish
  • Elephant fish can grow up to 1.2 meters in length and 7 kilos in weight
  • Treated very similar to a shark in the way they are prepared, cooked, and cleaned.
  • They also taste similar to flake so are good table fish. Just make sure you abide by legal catch limits.

Best time to catch Elephant ( Seasons )

In Victoria, Gummy Sharks can be caught most of the year. However, they are more active in warmer months ideally between Summer and Autumn. They are often best targeted at Dawn/Dusk and on tide changes. 

Elephant Fish Fishing Calendar

How to catch elephant fish

During spawning season they are quite easy to find and catch, however, they do have a strong sense and respond well to berley. There are beautiful and unique-looking creatures remember to follow the size and catch limits and where possible use catch-and-release fishing practices.

You can target elephant fish using your snapper rod combos. You can also target them using your whiting and bream combos. We prefer to find a middle ground between both. Either a 3-5 or 4-6 kilo rod with 3000-4000 size reel spooled with 8 to 12-pound braid is ideal. A running sinker to a swivel and then 60cm of a strong leader to a circle hook is a great option. This can also be achieved using an easy-rig to a swivel and leader. Paternoster rigs with chunks of fresh bait are also good setups to target elephant fish.

Elephant fish can be located around Western Port and Port Phillip Bay between March and May in good numbers. A good Autumn fish to put on your to-do list

Watch the vid below as we target elephant fish in Western port

Best Baits to Catch Elephant Fish

Our best bait recommendations include large oily strip and chunk baits. This can be in chunks or fillets including Salmon, Mackarel, trevally, and Pilchards are great options. The are several ways to present baits for elephant fish. Depending on where you are fishing this could be a dropper rig, sliding ezi rig, paternoster rig, and running sinker rig. The rig choice will be dependent on where you are fishing and the conditions such as tidal strength. Where possible fish with as little weight. When land-based you may need a heavy sinker to cast out as far as you can.

Bait Choices

We recommend using the following baits when targeting elephant fish

  • salmon
  • mackerel
  • trevally
  • squid
  • eel
  • mullet
  • pilchard
  • yakka’s
  • garfish

Remembering that fresh baits are always the best option, Gummies have very strong senses for foraging for food this is why fresh oily baits work well. It’s very uncommon to target gummy sharks with lures. Even though we have caught them on large jerk shads and even a squid jig once

Best locations to catch elephant fish

Great locations include

  • Western Port
  • Tendy Point
  • Stockyard point
  • Anderson inlet
  • Cape Wooamai
  • Corinella Pier
  • Barwon River
  • Lang Lang
  • Anglesea
  • Port Phillip Bay

You can obtain a free Victorian recreational fishing guide from the Victorian Fisheries Authorities weblink

If you feel this Elephant Fish Fishing Guide fish species guide is missing key information or needs any corrections. Then please let us know by emailing our team at enquiries@fishingmad.com.au with specific details in the email. Thank you