As predicted, northerly winds have delivered a fiery start to the season. Three weeks of constant warm winds have produced some of the best barra fishing we experienced since the 2010 floods.
The fingerlings we have stocked over the previous three years are coming through in large numbers ranging in size from 40-80cm. Every now and then I scan up bigger barra that are moving through with these smaller fish.
While boating plenty of these 60cm and 70cm specimens, during the past month my clients have encountered a hook up or two with some bigger barramundi; up to 96cm. This a very encouraging sign for a bumper barra season ahead.
The barra that have been caught have all been in superb condition – fat and healthy, making it apparent that these fish continued to feed throughout our mild winter. Anglers that have fished the lake pre floods would know that these impoundment barra can put on a huge amount of weight in a short period of time and we expect nothing less from this next generation of barra.
The 70cm and 80cm fish are gorging themselves on anything that comes within striking range and this shows in their appearance. They have fat bellies and broad shoulders and plenty of power to match. There have been plenty of bust ups from other anglers, which now tells us that we should look at upsizing mainline and leader.
I have experienced a few of these bust ups myself on 40lb-50lb leader so I now use nothing less than 30lb mainline and 60lb leader, given that you sometimes have to fish structured areas. This is very reminiscent of several years ago when most of the fishing here was done in heavily timbered bays and creeklines.
While lure casting is the most productive way of targeting barra there is also other options at hand. Trolling lures through the original creek beds, shallow bays and particularly the main basin can be very worthwhile throughout the next few months.
The main basin will attract bigger barra as Nov, Dec and January are their breeding months, instinct will tell these barra to head to the lowest part of the lake as they need to make their way to saltwater to breed. While they are in the basin they will feed up on baitfish.
The baitfish will school up around the thermocline, which is generally at 3-5m of depth depending on temperature.
Lures like the Predatek Vipers, RMG Scorpions in the 3-5m depth range should be trolled throughout the Basin for best results.
Bait fishing is another option, live shrimp have been used by a number of anglers over the previous month with good results. You will need 3/0 or 4/0 hooks, a float and about 1m of leader, set your livebait up to hang a foot or two below the surface then position your bait around lily pads and structured areas. Just be prepared to get your fair share of catfish if using this technique.
For all your tackle needs we stock a huge range of Jackall Squirrels, Smash minnows, RMG Scorpions, Tilsan Barra’s, a range of soft plastics and a whole lot more at the Lake M Office/kiosk. Don’t hesitate to give us a call for any further info on how the lake is fishing or what lures are working best. We look forward to seeing you this season at Monduran for some barra action.Reads: 843