Thanks to a decent golden perch season, the Murray cod closed season did not feel as long this year as in previous ones.
Good catches of golden perch, most of which were in really good condition, have kept anglers both busy and happy all Spring, particularly the latter party, but now that the cod season is open, we can now use the biggest lures we own to try to entice a big Murray cod.
Even while targeting cod with big lures, it is not uncommon to hook more big, aggressive goldens than Murrays because of the heightened perch seasonal activity.
But by using the bigger lures you at least increase your chances of the by-catch being a trophy golden – not a bad by catch in anyone’s books.
Those wanting the best chance possible of hooking a big Murray cod should concentrate their efforts after dark because this is when Blowering Dam’s cod are at their most active.
The main reason for this is because over the past decade or so, like most lakes around Australia Blowering was very low due to the drought. So there was a major lack of adequate cover in the lake for the cod and the smarter fish in the lake have become almost completely nocturnal.
This is the only time they feel safe enough to venture into the almost snag-free shallows in search of a feed.
However, now that the lake is practically full, there is ample cover of varying types for fish species, especially Murray cod. So there could be many more cod caught during daylight hours this year, especially if the lake stays fairly steady and the fish can slowly start to let down their guard.
Although the opening of the trout season wasn’t as good as it could have been, due to the massive water releases down the Tumut River, there have since been times of low flow when anyone fishing the river has had a very successful day.
Fishing a high, fast river is very difficult and a lot of anglers just don’t bother when it gets over 2000 megalitres.
This is not to say you can’t catch fish while it is in high flow, it is just much harder in every way but still doable for those willing to persist and work hard.
The best technique in high flow is repeat casting with big flashy lures or repeat bait drifting with wood grubs, PowerBait and/or worms. A PowerBait-worm combo or even a PowerBait-grub mix can be very effective in the fast flow.
When the river is low, pretty much all techniques work well but it is a must to use much lighter line.
The shallow, clear water makes the fish much spookier than they are when the river is roaring. A much more stealthy approach is required if you want to catch fish all day rather than scare them all day.
Start by using a lighter line or extra long leader around 1kg to 3kg, then use the lightest lure, sinker or fly possible for the conditions.
Finally, finish off the subterfuge by wearing natural-coloured clothes that blend in with your surroundings. I am rarely seen without some sort of Camo style clothing and successful fishing alone is the reason I wear it almost religiously these days.
I have been carving up the golden perch with the new WD Low Profile spinnerbaits, which I’ve designed and developed over the past year or so with the aid of Outlaw Spinnerbaits.
These small-profile spinnerbaits are designed specifically for golden perch and bass. They all have single blades to attract fish without scaring them and the hook point sits further back in the skirt for a far better hook-up rate without the need to add a snagging stinger hook.
There are six skirt colours in the range and three different blade set-ups to cover all water conditions. If the testing is anything to go by then these spinnerbaits are going to be hot. These lures will hit the tackle shops this month or can be purchased directly from Outlaw spinnerbaits.
A lot of once-a-year fishos or casuals join the diehards over the Christmas break, which makes December one of the busier times to be on the water.
But with a lot of fish species very active at this time of year you’d be silly not to get out there. No matter where you decide to fish this holiday, have a safe and merry Christmas and a fishy New Year.Reads: 2703