The golden perch switch on
  |  First Published: October 2011

Occasionally the fishing gods can be very nice, and the start to spring in the Riverina has been one of those times.

The golden perch have really started to fire over the past month. It seemed that as soon as the Murray cod season closed, the gods flicked the golden perch switch and suddenly every log that had produced a cod in the past two months started delivering goldens.

In September the goldens were tucked right up next to structure and were a little difficult to tempt. But as the weather warmed, the fish became much more aggressive and have been hitting lures with gusto.

Purple hardbodies and white spinnerbaits have been the standout lures and by downsizing the spinnerbait blades you can increase the number of strikes.

I often find that the bigger blades that work wonders on cod can occasionally be a bit too much for golden perch, which aren’t as territorial or as aggressive.

Old Man Creek has been the standout location for the goldens.

The Murrumbidgee downstream of Wagga also has been producing its fair share but the cod captures have still outnumbered the perch.

Remember to respect the rules covering the Murray cod closed season and return the fish to the water as soon as possible.


The trout stream season has finally arrived and if the fishing is going to be half as good as it was last season, we can expect some amazing action.

Angler numbers will be very high on the streams for the first month or so.

To those who head onto the streams this month, please be respectful of each other and don’t encroach on someone else if they were there first.

Flyfishers should try Globugs and weighted nymphs. We can also expect a few insect hatches soon, so carry a few dry flies just in case.

Celtas and soft plastics will be the order of the day for the stream-based lure fishers. Cast up and across the run and retrieve your lure just faster than the current.

There also may be a chance of getting onto some late spawners if you’re lucky.

It doesn’t get much better than springtime in the Snowy Mountains. The rainbows and the browns should almost all be back from their spawning runs and they will be hungry.

Post-spawn rainbows can become extremely aggressive in their search for food to put back on the condition they lost during breeding.

This can make for some sensational fishing, but the most important thing is actually finding these fish. Quite often rainbows will fire in a particular bay one day, but be shut down the next. The key is to find the areas that work on a particular day.

When trolling or casting in the lake you need to find what lure is working, often making quite a few lure changes until you come across one that works.

A good place to start at this time of year is the yellow wing Canberra Killer Tassie Devil (Y82), or a Rapala F5 in the perch colour for trolling. Natural pattern plastics and natural hardbodies or blades will suit the lure casters.

PowerBait will be the leading bait for the rainbows, with chunky cheese and chartreuse most productive. Grubs and scrub worms will be the order of the day for the browns; keep the bait close to shore with only a little or no weight.

Fly-fishers can expect things to really start to pick up. We will start to see a few insect hatches just on dark and if you’re lucky enough to come across one, you will be a very happy angler.

You may also encounter good polaroiding conditions this month. Frying Pan, Buckenderra and the Cobrabald Bay area will be the spots to try.

The ends of freshly soaked shallow bays in these areas will be goldmines just on dark. Woolly Buggers, Tom Jones, Stick Caddis and bead head nymphs will be the best flies.

This is definitely one of the most exciting times on the freshwater fishing calendar for those who like to chase salmonids. Just be sure to fish responsibly and respect other fishers and the waterways you use.

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