Low light and shade for yellas and cod
  |  First Published: March 2017

The summer months have come to an end leaving a tough month of fishing behind. Local dams have been fishing very inconsistently, although the fish that have been caught all seem to be in very good condition.

For some anglers, Copeton Dam has been the place to be in recent weeks, even with the unstable levels and high water temperatures. In saying that, the anglers that have been catching fish have either been doing big hours on the water or spending most their time and efforts on the low light hours. In the latest report I had mentioned the dam had been dropping at least 1% every few days and not much has changed since then.

Although the area has seen some big storms recently, giving the dam an inflow of up to 3000ML a day at some stages, the dam has dropped a further 6%. Wakebaits, paddlers and large spinnerbaits have been accounting for some big cod, while good numbers of yellowbelly have been caught on vibes and chatterbaits. There have even been a few by-catch golden perch taken off the surface as well.

Pindari Dam is dropping fairly quickly for irrigation after the summer heat and was recently sitting at the 91% mark, after being at full capacity. Fishing has been a lot slower than this time last year, although there are still good fish being caught around the dam. With the warmer water temperature looking for cooler water is key.

Locating grass bottomed areas around the dam and slowly hopping blades or lipless crankbaits is always a trusty method when chasing Pindari goldens, especially while the dam is still high and there are submerged rocks and trees everywhere. Soaking a bait under the shade of a bimini is also a good way of finding those fish sitting in the cooler water column. The dam is also abundant with silver perch, eel-tailed catfish and Murray cod that are commonly caught on those techniques.

The Severn River is running high and dirty after many recent summer storms, but the fish are still willing to play the game. Throwing larger profile lures has been the better option lately. It could be the bigger silhouette or just covering more water – whatever the reason, it’s just been working.

Throwing surface lures has also been a perfect option in the dirty water, as it’s more the sound than the appearance that’s enticing the bite. I recently managed a very nice cod falling just a few centimetres short of the magic metre mark using this technique – catching a metre cod is something I hope to do before the season is out.

The Beardies is still at a general flow and is also a bit discoloured after recent rains. There have been good numbers of perch caught. It can be very touch and go at times, so having a variety of different lures will increase your chances if finding fish proves too difficult.

Good luck to all of you out on the water in following weeks. Remember, if you plan to release your catch, take proper care. Fish caught in warmer water can sometimes be harder to release.

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