Snapper back in Port Phillip Bay

Victorians strike it large as “big reds” return for annual spawning

Snapper back in Port Phillip Bay
Snapper back in Port Phillip Bay

Large snapper, known to many TrailerBoat readers as "big reds", have returned in quantity to Port Phillip Bay on their annual spawning run.

The executive director of Fisheries Victoria, Anthony Hurst, said the snapper season looks promising, with good quantities of fish between 3-5kg sighted, as well as a good run of fish in the 1-2 kg range.

"Many anglers are catching their daily bag limit in a short time," said Hurst.

"Fisheries Victoria monitoring programs indicate that most of the large snapper caught recently result from highly successful spawnings in the spring and summer of 1994/95, 1995/96 and 1997/98.

"The smaller fish are from good spawnings in 2000/01 and 2003/04.

"Fisheries Victoria scientists also suggest that strong spawnings in 2004/05 should see the good snapper fishing continue for the next few years.

Hurst said the current minimum legal size limit for snapper is 28cm and the daily bag limit is 10 fish, of which only three may equal or exceed 40cm.

"Fisheries Officers regularly patrol popular boat ramps and are well aware of the most productive areas of the Bay," said Hurst.

"Recreational anglers are also reminded it is illegal to sell or trade their catch.

"Anglers found exceeding catch limits or selling their catch face significant fines."

Anyone observing anglers exceeding their catch limits or multi-tripping can report vehicle or vessel details to Fisheries Victoria’s 24-hour reporting line 13 FISH (13 3474).

Visit for more information.

PIC: Snapper caught on Mates Day On The Bay.


Want the latest stories delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for the free TradeBoats e-newsletter.