Fisherman explains mysterious lights over Bass Strait

The glowing lights as seen from Heybridge. Picture: Jack Horne

The glowing lights as seen from Heybridge. Picture: Jack Horne

Military exercises, alien invaders, traumatised Victorians trying to escape a third lockdown - theories came flying thick and fast when a set of mysterious lights were spotted lined up across the Bass Strait in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

However - as hundreds of savvy Advocate readers pointed out - the source of the lights was most likely commercial squid fishing boats out for an early morning catch.

Forth fisherman Kelly "Hooch" Hunt confirmed the source of the glow.

"Absolutely UFOs," he joked.

"Nah, they're arrow squid boats.

"There's two different types of squid, you've got your southern calamari ... that's all done by smaller boats for bespoke restaurants and things, they work on the North-West Coast in teams of two or three.

"Then there's arrow squid, that's the sort you see in Birdseye packs, frozen calamari - the commercial squid market is more for that high volume stuff."

He said arrow squid lived "anywhere" but generally preferred deeper water.

"The boats have these light panels, we're talking panels that are just insanely light," he said.

"The squid come to the light like insects. These guys have obviously found a good patch of squid and followed them into the Bass Strait. Sometimes if they find a really good cloud they can get up to 10 tonnes."

He said the boats were also good news for recreational fishermen, as it was likely the squid would also attract mako shark.

This story Mysterious lights over Bass Strait explained first appeared on The Advocate.