Cool change welcomed
  |  First Published: March 2014

With cod season well and truly in full swing, anglers have been taking full advantage of the low river flows and heights, and have been heading out on the water in the hope of catching a big green fish. Reports of catches on lures have been slow but bait fishers are doing well.

Autumn is a great time to fish for native species in the Murray River around Mildura. Leaves falling from the trees are just one of Mother Nature’s signs telling you the air temperature will soon become cooler. Now is an optimum time to target big Murray cod, and it’s also the time to upsize lures and tackle and cast into snags. The cooler weather will be welcomed by all anglers as it has been an extremely hot and dry summer.

Golden perch have been caught just about everywhere lately, especially on shrimp and yabbies. Most of these fish have been in excess of 50cm and very fat. A simple river rig with a 2/0 hook and a cocktail of worm and shrimp has done the trick lately.

Trolled and cast small lures have also been working well around snag piles and reed/weed banks too, especially around Merbein and Wentworth.

In the summer it is easy to troll up a 13-14 hour day, but in autumn and winter your fishing day is reduced to around 9-10 hours.

There haven’t been as many reports of Murray cod being caught on lures as there were at same time last year. A couple of the fish which have been reported have been around 90cm and were caught upstream of Mildura.

Bait fishermen in the shallows upstream of Mildura have been doing quite well, with numerous reports of 20+ fish up to 20lb on grubs in a single session. These fish have been very healthy and most were released which is great to see.

Of course there has been the usual ton of carp caught everywhere over the past month. Yes, they are a noxious species and it’s always good to rid the system of them whenever possible, but they are also fun to fish for, particularly larger fish on small spin outfits using 2-6lb braid. They are also a great species to teach the kids how to fish because they are pretty consistent.

The next month or so should bring some good fishing for all native species, in particular Murray cod. This is the time when the fish forage for food stocks to sustain them through the cooler months, which means they become much more active and willing to take big lures.

The key to fishing success in the autumn, or at any time of the year for that matter, is time on the water. Fish are relatively easy to catch if you can find where their hidey-holes are and what their movements are. Even though keen anglers will fish even in the hottest of conditions, the cooler months are always a relief and produce some great fishing around the Sunraysia area.

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