La Nina keeps salmon in cooler southern waters for predicted bumper season

Headshot of Shannon Smith
Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
A school of salmon at Lowlands Beach, west of Albany.
Camera IconA school of salmon at Lowlands Beach, west of Albany. Credit: Ajay Hammer @_misshammmatym/Ajay Hammer @_misshammmatym

The south coast is set for a bumper salmon season with the prevailing La Nina weather pattern tipped to keep the salmon further south.

With fishers starting to patrol the region’s beaches for schools of salmon, the prospect of a particularly big run will get people excited.

Albany fishing guru Scott Coghlan said during La Nina, strong Leeuwin currents come down from the north bringing warm water further south.

“You get a lot of northern fish pushed further south than they normally would, and there are a lot of marlin being caught off Perth,” Mr Coghlan said.

Get in front of tomorrow's news for FREE

Journalism for the curious Australian across politics, business, culture and opinion.


“At the other end, cooler-water fish like salmon don’t want to get into that warmer water.

“So if it pans out as I think, what we would get is the salmon won’t go as far north as they might usually.

“So we should have a good season on the south coast.”

He said salmon had been reported as far north as Exmouth in other years, which was unusual for the species.

Albany fishing guru Scott Coghlan with a salmon.
Camera IconAlbany fishing guru Scott Coghlan with a salmon.

With big schools seen around Esperance in recent weeks, he said the salmon should be around Bremer and Albany right about now.

“I was at Lowlands on Sunday and there was a school sitting there but it was too far out to catch,” he said. “Certainly about a week and a half ago they seemed to move on from Esperance. But La Nina should mean more fish around Albany.”

In just over two weeks, fishers will test the waters and try their luck at the three-day Albany Salmon Spectacular fishing competition on the Easter long weekend.

For details, visit recfishwest.org.au.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails