In late November, Central Gippsland received some well-deserved rain, putting some extra water in the catchments and raising the flows of our favourite fishing streams to very fishable levels.
The Thomson catchment received a great deal of rain, which set the Thomson River and tributaries like the Tyers River flowing beautifully. The Tyers River fished really well due to this higher flow of water, with brown trout to 1.5kg taken on Celtas and Rooster Tails. Soft plastics such as Gulps and Power Minnows have been working extremely well too.
The Macalister River has fished well upstream, above the Barkley River, where brown trout to 45cm have been landed fairly regularly for anglers prepared to walk a fair way. Tassie Devils, Celtas and Rapalas have been producing most of the fish.
Downstream, below Licola, has been very fickle. Since the floods it seems it doesn’t take much rain to dirty up the water. There are a few brown trout in the deeper pools, but not many. A lot of casting is needed to get one of these fish to take a lure.
The rainbow trout that were stocked a few months ago have been showing up regularly and they have been schooling in the faster runs. It would be good to see some brown trout stocked into the Macalister to help improve the existing stock left over after the floods. Any angler can see that there is nowhere near as many brown trout in this section of stream as there were before the floods.
The reason that Fisheries don’t stock brown trout into the Macalister catchment is that they are fearful the introduced brown trout will interfere with the natural self-sustaining stock that is already in the river. Many anglers will argue that the Macalister needs help if it is to be restored to what it was, and that stocking it with rainbows that never reach sexual maturity is a complete waste of time and money, which we anglers are paying for.
The Traralgon Creek was very low until the rain. Up until then, the mid sections of the creek had fished far better than the upper regions. Plenty of brown trout to 35cm in length have been caught. Flyfishing has been the way to go, especially with the number of ant falls that have been occurring of an evening. However, during the day, a simple rig of a Royal Wulff on top as a strike indicator, with a Hares Ear or brown nymph trailing behind it, has been very productive.
After the rain, the upper sections of the Traralgon fished better, and it was possible to get close to trout without spooking them. Soft plastics and small Celtas in sizes 1 and 2 worked well during this period.
For more information, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on 5174 8544.
Clive Rendell holds up a huge brown trout of 66cm that he caught on a Berkley 3” Minnow in ginger beer colour. It weighed just under 6 lbs.Reads: 2388