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Cod back in the game
  |  First Published: December 2011



To diehard freshwater fishos, December 1 means one thing – it’s time to start chasing the big greenbacks again. Big Murray cod are the pinnacle of southern freshwater fishing and are always a prized catch.

Straight after the cod spawning season closure, the fish are generally pretty hungry and keen to eat anything that comes within range.

Most techniques work this month.

Very few cod can swim past a big, juicy wood grub or bardi grub.

Trolling medium to large lures, particularly after dark, is another great way of hooking into a few Murray cod at the beginning of the season.

Those addicted to casting lures will fare best casting to visible structure during the day and after dark making long, searching casts along likely-looking banks.

Spinnerbaits, shaker blades like Chatterbaits and Mumblers, large lipless crankbaits, metal blades and soft plastics are all worth a shot. It is up to you to work out which lure and colour work best on the day.

GOLDEN PERCH

There will still be good numbers of golden perch this month and they will feature as cod by-catch, too. If targeting goldens, stick with lures less than 70mm.

Casting into and around drowned timber close to deep water, jig with bait or lures there or just troll around these spots.

Goldens can still be in large schools at this time of the year so if you hook one, there is a good chance there are more.

Continue to troll through the area, keep casting or bait up again. Don’t move on as a lot of people do after catching a fish, stay there.

Even if there isn’t a school, the disturbance created by your recent fish encounter can create more action and other fish from a long way away can become inquisitive and move in to see what the fuss is about.

REDFIN

Blowering Dam’s redfin generally spread out during the warmer months but they do not take much finding.

Rather than being concentrated in tight schools in deep areas, they spread everywhere, from the shallow margins all the way to 15m depths.

Trolling is always a good way of locating redfin. It pays to pull up once you find a school and start casting small spinners, soft plastics, lipless crankbaits, blades, jigs or hardbodies.

The case the bigger redfin hold in deeper water than those smaller fish that are easier to catch redfin.

These large fish can be located by trolling small extra-deep-diving hardbodies or soft plastics rigged on heavy jig heads.

If you have a good sounder you don’t really need to troll to find fish, simply cruise over any likely looking areas and keep a close eye on your sounder.

TUMUT RIVER

There have been a lot of good-sized trout caught in the Tumut River and some of the smaller creeks.

Flow rates and rain have dictated which technique has fared best but because the levels have been all over the place, it is pretty safe to say that no matter what your preferred trout fishing technique, is you would have had conditions that suited you at some stage.

Things might have slowed slightly since the almost unbelievable fishing at the opening of the season but there are still massive numbers of good-sized trout.

Now the heavily-fished trout will be much easier to spook so more attention to stealth is needed for best results. Wear dull clothes that blend with your surroundings, approach the water slowly and quietly and you will increase your chances.

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