May isn’t the end just yet
  |  First Published: May 2013

The sight of jassids on the water in April had many fishing tongues wagging, hopefully they continue into May

There are only three waters open in the southern highlands during May and one of them, Lake Meadowbank probably won’t be worth visiting as it will be drawn down to extremely low levels throughout the month for dam maintenance.

Having said that, it could be very well worth a trip up to see the structure and the course of the old river bed for future fish holding reference, maybe even some lure hunting for lures that that have been lost in the snags, very rewarding at times! That leaves us Dee Lagoon and Lake Burbury over towards the west coast.

Dee Lagoon

May isn’t exactly a prime month anywhere in the highlands for bountiful fishing, but you never know. As long as April hasn’t been too cold and has been reasonable warm and settled the first couple of weeks of May could still have the odd beetle or jassid kicking around, especially on clear warmish afternoons.

Apart from that if the night has been clear with a calm morning the ever reliable chironomids will hatch; a keen angler may very well be fishing to midging fish. The lure fishers will probably have the best of it though, either trolling or fishing with hardbodied lures or soft plastic in and around the Dee’s dead timber and fallen submerged logs.

Lake Burbury

If the forecast is good, Lake Burbury could very well be worth the further 120 minutes drive from the Dee.

The rainbows in Burbury this season have been in great condition with a few getting towards 1.3kg, by May they will be in peak condition.

If the weather is mild, there will be fish in the wind anes; otherwise you could do a lot worse than towing a couple of lures around behind the boat or spinning from the shore. If the fish are feeding in the windlanes, I’d give a larger wet a run first, this late in the season fish often lose their fussiness and will often respond to a larger bead head green nymph or even a Matuka style fur fly dragged across in front of them.

I’ve got a soft spot for a hot orange bodied fur fly with a black fur strip tied Matuka style for this style of fishing, it can be very exciting often with the fish bow waving behind the fly just before you feel their weight .

If there a fish taking gum beetles or jassids earlier in the month, you can do no better than Bruce Gibson style patterns.

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