The closed season for river trout is almost upon us and, like any mad keen trout angler, I hate this time of year. On the bright side, the next couple of weeks will bring the best trout fishing for the year.
Unfortunately the trout fishing thus far has not been anything spectacular due to low water levels. We have had a bit of rain here in Central Gippsland, but not enough to lift the water levels to a respectable standard. For this reason our local Strzelecki streams have fished fairly poorly, and the fish have been very spooky.
In saying this, good water levels have been maintained in the west branch of the Tanjil River. This has produced lots of healthy brown tout for anglers using Celtas, Vibrax and even Tassie Devils.
For the fly guys, wet flies are doing better than anything. Small bead head nymphs and small streamers are working a treat. This river should fish well just before trout closing as the larger fish of Bluerock Reservoir make their way upstream to spawn. This means that all large trout should be released, as they are our breeding stock. Happily, most keen trout anglers fish this time of year purely for sport and for the chance to catch a large trout, not to fill their freezer with fish.
The Tyers River is another stream that has maintained a better than average water level and it has been producing plenty of brown trout up to 500g. Celta bladed spinners have been very successful, as have small soft plastics.
On April 18, DPI Fisheries held the first Family Fishing Fun Day at Lake Hyland in Churchill. The day was a total success with over 160 children and 80 families participating in the event. Activities for the day included casting clinics, fishy balloons, face painting, a jumping castle, cooking demonstrations and the very popular Flathead Fred show.
Nearly 700 rainbow trout were stocked into the lake especially for the event, and some of these fish were thumpers of over 3kg. More rainbow trout were stocked on the day, which gave the kids a real buzz as they got to witness trout of over 1kg being placed in by hand. Some of these larger trout continued swimming nearby, which kept the kids keen throughout the day.
As a result of the day, 96% of families surveyed said they planned to return to Lake Hyland sometime in the next 6 months, and said they were likely to go fishing in Victoria in the near future. Around 94% of families said their knowledge of fishing had improved.
The DPI supplied all the children with Shimano rods and reels, as well as all the bait and tackle they needed for they day. I think that is great, well done!
The biggest fish landed for the day was a rainbow trout of about 1kg, with plenty of smaller fish of about 600g landed as well. In total about 45 fish, including rainbow trout and redfin, were landed for the day.
Lake Hyland is one of the five designated ‘Premier Lakes’ included in the state government’s $3.2 million Go Fishing in Victoria investment in recreational fishing.
For More information on fishing Central Gippsland, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on 5174 8544.Reads: 712