My Big Catch: Point Richards boat ramp update

August 20, 2020 BY

Two of the three pinkies caught by James Leishman on squid in the Barwon River near Sheepwash Road.

EARLIER this week I was invited by Better Boating Victoria, the Department of Transport to attend an online meeting to discuss the Point Richards boating facility and to share the findings of their recent coastal processes study with all of you, my readers .
The presenter stated that late in 2019, Better Boating Victoria commissioned a coastal processes study to better understand the factors driving the seagrass accumulation. They are now able to share these findings, the proposed concept design for an engineering solution and the proposition on how to minimise seagrass build up and ongoing maintenance.
The report states that the northerly winds often wash up dead seagrass onto the beach and the Point Richards boat ramp. This affects boating operations and safety.
Consequently, the Bellarine Bayside Foreshore Committee of Management must restrict ramp access to manage ongoing site safety.
The Department of Transport, Better Boating Victoria investigated several options to improve the Point Richards boating facilities.
Investigations included site observations, sediment sampling, laboratory analysis and bathymetric survey of the area of interest.
Additionally, numerical models were used to simulate coastal processes including the drifting of seagrass leaves from the Point Richards seagrass beds onto the boat ramp.
The investigation demonstrated that:

  • Seagrass detach from the Point Richards meadow
  • The meadow is currently growing and fluctuates with dry and wet climatic conditions
  • Alongshore ebb currents trap seagrass at the boat ramp
  • Weak flood currents cannot flush seagrass out
  • A sandbar gradually moves between breakwater heads, and
  • This sandbar can only be dredged with specialist equipment.

Three possible breakwater configurations were modelled and studied to reduce the accumulation of wrack near the ramp.
The most effective configuration reducing seagrass ingress at the boat ramp consists of a deflector to the west of the existing boat ramp
Drifting seagrass leaves are deflected into Port Phillip Bay.
Alongshore sand is trapped west of the boat ramp. Natural sedimentation will continue across the entrance; however, the deflector provides a convenient access for maintenance dredging of this sandbar.
No new impact will come to Portarlington beaches from sand drifting or seagrass accumulation. The breakwater cost estimate is approximately $2.1 million and construction may disrupt the site for approximately 12 weeks.
This infrastructure will facilitate the maintenance of the Point Richards boat ramp while providing a calm harbour basin around the boat ramp which substantially improves safety at the site.
For more information, head to betterboating.vic.gov.au.
I would also like to take this opportunity to remind everyone please keep those photos coming in of your own big catch. We will now even take older photos of your big catch previously if they have not yet been published. Please forward them to the email address below, with type of fish, weight, length, location, and your name. I am more than happy to place your photos in My Big Catch. Email photos to [email protected]

Fishing Reports
Current weather conditions are also making things quite difficult across the board for most anglers however, when boats can get out reports consist of the following:

Anglesea
Whiting is still scarce
A few pinkies have been reported
A few flathead being caught out deep
Some small salmon being caught off local beaches
Some very large squid have been also caught
Thanks to the Rusty Anglers Angling Club Anglesea

Barwon Heads
Some snapper had been reported
Flathead are still around
Some whiting reported offshore
Some salmon catches reported off local beaches
River reports fail to impress but the occasional whiting and trevally are still be expected to be around
Reports compliments of the Ocean Grove Angling Club

Torquay
A few whiting were being reported
Small pinkies and snapper were being caught
Flathead reports the same but still slow
The odd gummy shark were being caught offshore
A few salmon are still being reported off local beaches
Spring Creek the usual small bream
Reports compliments of the Torquay Angling Club

Queenscliff
St Leonards has been seeing reports of King George whiting, flathead, squid, along with a few snapper
Clifton Springs has been reporting a few snapper, whiting, calamari, Gummy Shark, and flathead
Queenscliff reports are of whiting, trevally, flathead but not in great numbers
The Creek is still seeing the occasional trevally and salmon
Swan Bay reports the odd calamari, whiting and flathead still occurring
Point Lonsdale Salmon, trevally, whiting and snapper but not in any real numbers
The White Lady was seeing whiting, along with calamari, and snapper occurring
Indented heads report flathead, King George whiting, snapper and calamari
In the bay reports there has still been some nice flathead reported

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