The Murray cod season is finally upon us, and if Blowering Dam’s cod continue to fish as well as they have over the last couple of months it should be a cracker of an opening. There has been an amazing catch rate for both golden perch and Murray cod over spring. Hopefully this trend will continue at least for the first part of summer.
Many anglers have been kept busy by big numbers of 50-60cm cod lately. However, the beauty of this fishery is in its unpredictability – you never know when the next Murray cod is going to be 150cm. One lucky angler targeting trout landed a monster 136cm Murray cod on a Tassie Devil.You just never know when it is going to happen next.
During the closed season, a lot of Murray cod were caught on small to medium sized lures on the troll. These lures will still work well this month, but now that the season is open can use much bigger lures to really annoy the big resident Murray cod.
If you’re targeting Murray cod on the troll try big hard bodied lures like the 90mm and 150mm AC Invaders. These lures have a large profile and amazing diving ability that is hard to match. Other large profiled deep diving lures that are worth a troll are big StumpJumpers, Mudeye Mohawks and Koolabung lures to name a few.
There has also been plenty of Murray cod caught on the cast, most of these fish where taken on small lipless crank baits or on spinnerbaits thrown for golden perch. Most anglers will now upsize to large lipless crank baits such as the #2 Prism Murrins, 70mm Slap Walkers or the Jackall Doozers to increase their chances.
As for spinnerbait style lures I find double blade set-ups, particularly at Blowering Dam, scare more fish then they attract so I’d suggest sticking with a single blade set up. If you want to upsize it to appeal more to the XOS Murray cod then add a bigger plastic rather than an extra blade. Alternatively try chatter baits or the new Insanity Tackle Angle baits as, compared to spinnerbaits, the fish have seen far less of these.
The golden perch fishing during early spring was not as exciting as in previous years but certainly picked up around mid-spring as the weather warmed and continues to get better and better. Most anglers will be targeting the cod this month with the aforementioned larger lure styles will still catch plenty of yellas. To really target them you will need to use smaller lures.
Trolling or casting with smaller lures like #3 Prism Murrins, TN50 or TN60 Jackalls, 60mm Slap Walkers, Storm Hot’n’Tots, Trollcraft Double Downers, small StumpJumpers or any of the smaller Viking lures is a good way to target the golden perch at this time of the year.
Another productive technique during the summer months is to bait fish around shaly banks, rocky points, and submerged trees. Bait fishing for goldens has been insane this spring with the best bait proved to be medium sized yabbies. Your best bet is to rig them on a paternoster rig to keep them from burying themselves in the bottom.
Alternatively use a yabby like you would a soft plastic, just rig the yabby on a hook and add a small running sinker if needed then simply cast the yabby out and allow it to flutter to the bottom, once it hits bottom give the rod a slow and gentle lift of around a metre or so then allow the yabby to fall back to the bottom, repeat this all the way back to your feet. Fishing this way is far more fun and far more rewarding. One lucky angler fishing this way landed 21 golden perch in less than an hour in mid spring right as a big thunderstorm hit.
There is a batch of golden perch in Blowering Dam thatmust have originated from a stocked group known for misshapen heads (see picture). We call them bass headed goldens and quite a few have been caught now over the last five or so years. They are all of a similar size, a fact that leads me to think it was only 1-2 batches of deformed goldens. Either way, other than having a smaller than usual mouth they fight just as hard as any other yellas in the dam and the deformity doesn’t seem to affect them. They certainly make a novel catch though and make for some interesting pictures if you are lucky enough to land one.
Redfin start to move towards the shallows this month hunting their own offspring as well as anything else that will fit into their mouths. These fish are a reasonable target for all anglers and can be caught trolling or casting with small lures or by bait fishing with worms, maggots or small yabbies. When the natives are being tight lipped these fish make a great alternative.
As can see there are plenty of options for anglers fishing the area over Christmas – I didn’t even get to mention the trout fishing which can be spectacular at this time of the year as well!
Until next month have a great but most importantly safe break and may the fishing gods look after us all.Reads: 1418