Don’t put the gear away yet
  |  First Published: May 2008

The Seymour area is still providing anglers with some excellent results. Even with the high river level and dirty water, some exceptional catches have been made. Murray cod and redfin continue to make up most of the catches but some unusual species have also been landed.

Recently I spent quite a bit of time traveling along the river, speaking to campers and checking out their results. While some had not taken any fish at all, others had done quite well. One party had even managed to catch a couple of catfish. We don’t catch too many of these in the Goulburn these days. However, if you do happen to catch a catfish in this area, they must be put back as catfish are a protected species. They can only be taken from waters within the Wimmera Basin.

In my travels I also made a visit to the Toolamba Angling Competition. This section of the Goulburn was low and clear, but still boatable, and the anglers taking part in this competition took full advantage of the conditions to catch some excellent fish. In all there were 24 Murray cod and five golden perch weighed in. The biggest was a 70cm Murray cod. This fish was taken on a trolled Codger lure by Trevor McKay. For a small competition held over a short period of time, these results were excellent. The Toolamba Fishing Competition also offers many prizes for other species, as well as a major prize draw of $1000 cash. This prize went to Ian Mattney.

A little further downstream, the Undera area has also seen some very good cod caught. The majority of these fish have been taken on bait by anglers preferring to fish from the bank.

Future Outlook

The way things have been going over the last month or so I don’t see anything changing too much. The river level has dropped but this has resulted in the water clearing up. This will certainly help anglers who prefer to use lures, so don’t give up on the Goulburn just yet.

Certainly the autumn months bring cooler weather, but far too many anglers believe that this signals the time to put the cod gear away. Nothing could be further from the truth. You may not catch as many fish in a session, but the size of the fish you do catch will be much better.

Waranga Basin will be well worth a trip during autumn as this is when the bigger redfin start to show up. In previous years we had our best results trolling red and green Jenson Hotlips, Manns 15+ and No 2 StumpJumpers. Casting Outlaw spinnerbaits and Jackals also accounts for a lot of fish. Many anglers fish with bait either from the bank or from an anchored boat, and this technique also accounts for some excellent fish.

The channels in this area are fishing very well at present, with many redfin up to 700g being taken on lures and soft plastics. The water level in many of these channels may drop away as irrigation ceases, however those that retain reasonable levels of water should continue to fish well. So, there is no need to put the gear away just yet as there are still plenty of fish around to keep you out on the water.

Trevor McKay 70 cm winning cod Toolamba fishing competition.

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