Our first location is Warneet Pier, a favourite of mine that is nice and close to many people that can’t get to some of the more well known areas.
MAIN SPECIES: Whiting, Flathead, Mullet, Trevally, Squid, Elephant Fish, Salmon (bait size), Snook
Warneet is a hard flowing area, and can be very tricky to get used to, the key here is to fish in the breaks and focus on fish that are grazing, dumping a 6 oz bomb sinker straight into the channel isn’t always the best option here, focus on the weed patches and shallower areas. Best time is high tide with the run-out fishing best starting at the top of the tide, use a paternoster rig or soft plastics and fish the mid section of the pier, this area tends to produce more fish than the end of the pier.
King George Whiting are a prominent species at Warneet pier particularly during the summer months, you can catch them as the tide rises but the bigger specimens prefer the start of the run out where they can sit and wait for an easy meal. Pippis work best here on a Paternoster rig or Black Magic Whiting Snatcher, use a 1 oz sinker with a round bottom to allow it to roll, make sure you fish the left hand side during run out and aim for weed beds, it is a good idea to stop by at low tide and find some nice weed patches, present your bait just outside (within 50cm) of the weed patches on sandy areas.
Flathead can be found at Warneet Pier all year round, the best way to target these fish exclusively is with soft plastics, fish 3″ grubs or jerk shads on a 1/4 oz jig head, these fish go hard at the top of the tide but will also be found at low tide in the numerous shallow drop offs, make sure you keep your lure on the bottom to entice a strike.
Warneet is a great bait collection area, salmon around 25cm and good sized mullet are numerous here. Arrive at the pier mid tide (run in) and fish up to the high tide on the right hand side. Use a burley pot with Tuna oil and bread, 3/4 down the pier seems to be the most productive location for this method. Your rig should consist of a 1 oz sinker and size 10 long shank hooks. Chicken thigh is the secret weapon in this equation, it is firmer that fillet and will stay on the hook for more catches, keep bait size at around 1/2 a fingernail.
For Trevally fish a high tide, use pippies and focus your bait around the pylons of the pier, paternoster rig once again wins here.
Snook frequent Warneet pier during the colder months where they come to feed on young garfish under the lights of the pier, Match the Hatch is very much a big factor here, fish with 2″ grub tail plastics on a 1/8 jighead and keep your plastic near the surface, fish in the light spots at night on a high tide. Snook often just tap the lure so keep your senses high and be ready to strike on the smallest tap, and bring a net, you’ll need one!
Squid fishing at Warneet requires a high tide and size 2.5 jigs work best, the Black Magic red foil belly is a killer here, fish the first half of the pier in the shallower water around the poles, cast out over the weed beds and you wills find squid, avoid the urge to go to the end of the pier as most of the squid are concentrated towards the boat ramp side.
This time of year you can find elephant fish at Warneet, fish for them at the end of the pier, use a 4 oz bomb sinker and a paternoster rig with fresh fish or squid, size 4/0 hooks work well here.
And for Warneet Pier I will leave it at that! Some of this information is hard earned secrets I discovered over years of fishing this pier, use it wisely and respect your limits, the pier is narrow so be polite around other fishermen sharing it!