It’s the time of year when birds are chirpy and bees are buzzing. Sleepy golden perch that lay dormant in winter have come out of the corner swinging like prize fighters. With the abundance of water that flowed through our inland rivers, both the dams and rivers are looking healthy and promising.
Spring produces a bite unlike any other time of the year. Goldens are moving up on the edges, aggressively feeding on shrimp and yabbies, that are also actively working the margins. It’s the perfect time to get out to the dams with a shallow diving lure or fly. As the season moves on, catch these feisty natives as they look to put on condition before spawning up off the rocky points and weedy edges.
The official close of Murray cod season starts September 1, so make sure the surface lures are sidelined. Make a drastic downsize of your lures to decrease the catches of our beautiful green fish. Lures around 60mm or less are the only way to go during cod close. Rattling vibration lures are effective, or the Kokoda G-Vibe and Jackall TN50 and 60s are some of the more popular lures around Tamworth.
Don’t be fooled – these lures will catch the smaller cod. If this happens, leave fish in the water, unhook them and let them go with minimum handling. Blades and soft plastics are other types of lures gaining huge popularity within the spin brigade. The subtle vibration and slow nature of these lures has been a real bread winner for the AYC anglers. Make time for these lures, as they can be dynamite.
Edges are going to be where the action is. If you’re fishing from the bank, shallow divers worked just above the weed will be good. Most of the hits will come within a few feet of the bank, so don’t be too quick to lift the lure out. Skirted jigs will also fool a bulk of oversized footballs. Slow and steady is the aim of the game – short hops and drags along the bottom is all you need, with these American imports. They are really underrated on our local waters.
If you fish back towards the banks from a boat, shallow rocky bans and weedy drop-offs are key targets. Vibration lures like the Jackalls and Mazzys, as well as blade style lures, will be more effective worked slowly around the bottom. For those casting out bait, there won’t be a better bait to get your hands on other than shrimp. These crustaceans are piscatorial gold and a must have on your next outings.
Spring weather means one thing – carp on fly. These golden hard fighting ferals are amazing sportfish that really test your light line angling skills. Seeing a 20lb fish cruise up to your fly in 2ft of water is exciting. The line burning run that follows is powerful and unforgiving. A good 5wt outfit and a handful of shrimp flies or woolly buggers will have most situations covered. Any river or dam around Tamworth will hold good populations of carp. Try Chaffey Dam, Lake Keepit, the Peel River and even Quirindi Creek.
Small lures still catch cod. When the season in closed, leave the fish in the water at all times. Remove the hook and let them get back to breeding.
Small cod like this can only mean good things for our future stocks.
Pocket water gold is both fun and addictive. Get out there and enjoy the sun.Reads: 185