Up and down around Shepparton
  |  First Published: May 2017

With environmental flows being pushed down the Goulburn, fishing has been a bit tricky this month. There have been good reports of fish on the rise of the river and next to no reports for the next week. The water seems to look good for two weeks a month lately, but that seems to be a big enough window for those fishing locally.

Reports of fish up to 70cm being caught in previous black water affected areas are very promising. Trolling Codgers straight up the guts of the Goulburn has worked best for the lure fishos. Some have been getting closer to the edges trolling spinnerbaits. This has not been as effective but it’s a great option to cover all water areas. Bait fishing was best in early autumn with plenty of smaller yellowbelly caught around the Moira Park area.

Fishing Downstream of Shepparton around Undera has been hit and miss with some catching one or two fish in a weekend. Some have caught three or four in an hour. I think in coming months it will be very hit and miss in our area as it’s always a quiet period. We are still yet unsure of the full effects of the black water.

Last year I mentioned using big single bladed spinnerbaits in the Broken River and yet again it has been successful. Plenty of local fishos upsize their lures in the hope they entice a fish to strike in anger. Spend plenty of time in the snags, as you may just annoy a monster enough to smash your lure. Casting your lures and letting them drop off the timber into the water is the best to get into the deep cover. It’s risky as you may lose more tackle, but I find this time of year you need to get right into the fish’s faces deep in the timber.

Surface fishing and flyfishing have dropped off as the temperatures have cooled. There is still the odd report of cod being caught off the top right on dark.

Waranga Basin

This is the time of the year where I fish the basin the most. There is minimal wind and minimal boating traffic. There have still been plenty of reports of redfin being caught in the dozens with some boats landing over 100 fish in a day.

The size of the fish hasn’t been huge lately. There are still some bigger ones being caught on the edges of the schools. Over the next couple of months I expect to see more big cod being caught at the basin. A few Murchison locals had success trolling bigger cod lures last winter.

It’s probably somewhere that not many have really gone to target big cod. They’re certainly in there and have a huge amount of food. The crayfish will start to move at the basin in June and July, so it may be worth packing a few big cod lures to troll around in between checking your cray pots.

Kialla Lakes

The lakes have seen a lot more fishing traffic over the past two months and that’s all because of one thing. That one thing is that it’s fishing the best it has in years with many landing 3-5 fish a night. Walking the edges casting spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits has worked a treat in recent times and I think the only thing that will turn the fish off is cold weather.

In early autumn we had plenty of smaller storms and this sent the fish crazy. I keep saying get out there before or after rain – that’s the number one time on the lake. Those bait fishing have also caught plenty of fish and unfortunately a lot of the catches have been small carp.

Let’s hope that more and more of these carp get caught and removed from the lakes system. The small lake number three is very hard to access but it has plenty of carp in it. If you’re looking for some fun on light gear, cast a floated bunch of worms near the weed and hold on.

Shepparton Lake

The Shepparton Lake has had some weed removed which has helped with the fishing lately. In previous months it has been almost unfishable. The removal of weed gives us some corridors to troll small lures through. Those fishing from the bank will still have trouble with weed. If you can land your bait and lure in a patch without weed you should be able to land a fish.

The lake is now stocked with silver perch so I would expect to see more reports of them getting caught on bait in coming months. There are still plenty of trout rising of a morning and if you know how to flyfish you can have plenty of success. If not, floating PowerBait or casting small spinners works well on the stocked trout.

Local Channels

The channels are due to be fully dropped this winter to allow for weed removal and spraying. This will see fish congregate in pooled areas, so if you fish those waters you should have a field day. The channels have been fishing very well, especially for natives. An old work mate of mine caught 20-30 cod over a couple of weeks using bulk worms and yabbies as bait.

The channels near Waranga Basin are still fishing well with plenty of cod, yellowbelly and redfin caught on lures.

Smaller hardbodies and vibes have worked best in these channels.

Toolamba Fishing Club 11th Easter Classic
The Toolamba Fishing Club yet again ran a cracker of a competition over Easter this year. There was a good turnout of competitors with plenty of families attending the event. A huge congratulations has to go to all the sponsors and volunteers involved that supported the Toolamba Fishing Club. The event seems to get stronger every year and it’s a credit to all those involved.
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