River levels rise before the cod closure
  |  First Published: September 2012

River levels are once again rising around Mildura due to extra flushes from upstream.

We are to expect a high river again, but should flush the system out hopefully in time for cod closure.

Yellowbelly are still being caught here and there on vibration lures in dark colours around lock 11 and below Mildura weir. It is unusual to see yellowbelly activity at a high this time of year, but the constant changing levels and water temperatures are affecting this.

Fishing with bait around the weir structure in Mildura has been the best method to pick up a yella or two lately. Baits that are working the best are a cocktail of shrimp and worm. Live shrimp are best but have been incredibly difficult to find of late due to water temperatures.

Murray cod up to 12kg have been caught lately on trolled lures. Hopefully once the water rises and then starts to fall back into its banks we should see Murray cod activity really heat up. Trolling has been the most effective method of catching one of these green monsters with a running depth of around 6-7m being ideal. Most of the cod caught lately have been achieved using 120mm Koolabung Codzilla hardbodied lures.

Casting large spinnerbaits has been tempting and is usually the time of year to do so. However, even in quieter stretches of river, the flow has been too intense to keep the lures in the strike zone long enough.

Redfin are still being caught around Mildura with some nice sized fish being caught both in and out of the main river system. Majority of the redfin caught have been achieved on soft plastics. Blades have also been effective but their action in the water is sometimes too fast for winter fish to take them at will. A slower presentation with soft plastics, particularly the Squidgy range, is the go.

Luring for yellowbelly from the bank is also best around the new rock structure at Lock 11, particularly at the point where the lock gates open on the down side. Springtime will see yellowbelly activity pick up a bit more around the weir.

Spending time on the water is the key to landing a nice fish this winter and presentation and lures choice is paramount. The next month or so will be testing as we see another huge flush of water coming down the system just in time for the closed cod season.

The author with a nice Murray cod caught recently near Mildura on a custom colour 120mm Koolabung Codzilla before the closed season.

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