Schools back – and so are the anglers
  |  First Published: February 2008

Fishing conditions have been good in the Yarra Valley, with just enough rainfall to clear the water and wash in new food sources. I always enjoy fishing in February. We have recovered from Christmas, school holidays have finished, and the household routines are starting to settle back into place. This makes fishing holes less busy, and is the last good chance of landing good-sized trout before the water temperature gets too high.

Reports of Murray cod captures have increased, with the Yarra River from Warrandyte through to Templestowe providing most of the action. Kayaking in these areas is easier, and allows you to get closer to the deeper holes. If you are land-based, fish the area west of Warrandyte, targeting deep holes with over hanging trees and casting from the steep banks. Good baits are scrubworms, yabbies or bardi grubs pinned on size 2/0 Baitholder hooks. Tossing 1/2oz Sure Catch spinnerbaits and working them with a ‘tip tip retrieve’ action is also productive. If you have any questions on kayaking our local rivers, come in and have a chat to Wayne or myself. Wayne is hitting the water several times a week.

The reports coming through from Ringwood Lake have increased over the past four weeks, with lots of families enjoying some fishing success, including the landing of a good sized carp. Customer Aaron reported taking a 16lb carp from the weedy area opposite the play equipment. Redfin have also been caught. Scrubworms on a size 8 Baitholder hook under a float have been proving the most success on carp, and small spinners with a gold or gold/green colour have been good for the red fin. The best time is from late afternoon until dusk.

Sugar Loaf Dam continues to fish well for redfin and trout. I expect this area to slow down as the hotter weather really kicks in and makes the water too warm for the fish and reducing their activity levels. So, get in now rather than wait for the end of the month.

Lilydale Lake has seen the end of the school holiday busy times, but there are still plenty of good-sized carp and trout to be taken. Casting Tassie Devils and fishng with Powerbait will provide most of the action. As the water has been dirty, retrieve your lures very slowly and work the lower third of the water. Pick a cool early morning, and preferably fish around shaded cover.

For those targeting trout the best areas have been in the Yarra around Launching Place, in deep holes around structures with shade. Rapala 3cm lures are working well.

Macquarie perch reports have increased, with most coming from the area between Reserve Road at Wonga Park and Jumping Creek. Scrubworms pinned on a size 6 Baitholder hook below a size 2 bean sinker in running sinker rig and fished with the bail arm open will bring success. It is important that the Macca can take the bait without feeling resistance.

Macquarie perch are one of only a few species that will swallow bait and spit it out to test if there is resistance on the bait. If no resistance is felt they will then again swallow the bait deeper, giving you the opportunity to set the hook.

 For up to date fishing information, both fresh and saltwater, contact the boys at Compleat Angler in Ringwood on 03 9870 7792, or better still drop in at 92 Maroondah Highway – we’re open 7 days a week with plenty of top quality bait and a great selection of freshwater and saltwater gear.
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