Record rainfall has dampened fishing productivity
  |  First Published: June 2017

Conditions can change very quickly when you are planning a trip, so it always pays to check the local conditions before heading off. The Bendigo region has received some record-breaking rainfall over the last month. This has already impacted the productivity of the fishing in some locations in the region.


There are still areas of blue green algae in Lake Eppalock. The algae will start to die off over the next few weeks. If you are planning to keep a few fish for a feed, always make sure you wash the fish fillets thoroughly before cooking them. The productivity in the fishing remains awesome. Water levels have remained steady over the past few weeks. If we continue to receive good rainfall, we may start to see water levels rising again.

Redfin continue to make up the majority of anglers’ captures. The best concentrations of redfin can be found in the depth ranges of 5-8m. Trolling deep diving hardbody lures is a productive option. If a good concentration of fish is located, casting soft plastics and bladed lures has been working well. Lately the most productive colours have been white and natural colour schemes.

The productivity of the golden perch fishing has been low. Small numbers of golden perch have been caught by anglers bait fishing around the edges of standing timber. Yabbies and shrimp are the most productive baits. The occasional golden perch has also been caught as a by-catch by anglers trolling hardbody lures while targeting redfin. Small numbers of golden perch have also been caught by anglers trolling the edges of rocky shorelines.


The recent rainfall has had a negative effect on the water clarity throughout a lot of the Campaspe River. The water clarity is only average at Elmore and the water clarity only gets worse as you travel downstream to Rochester. In these two areas, the productivity of the lure fishing has been poor. If you plan to fish the Campaspe River with lures, the most productive section has been below Lake Eppalock downstream to Barnadown.

This is the section of the Campaspe River where the water clarity is currently the best. For anglers walking the banks in this section of river, there have been small captures of both golden perch and the occasional Murray cod. Anglers will need to work hard in order to land a few fish.


The redfin fishing continues to be productive. The best concentrations of redfin can be located in shallow water in 2-4m of water. Trolling shallow diving hardbody lures has been working well. If a good concentration of redfin is located, then casting soft plastics has been the most productive method.

Water clarity is only average, so the most productive lure colours have been bright colours such as orange and chartreuse. In the next few weeks as water temperatures cool down we will start to see the redfin move into deeper water.

If we continue to get some good rainfall, we will start to see water levels starting to rise again. This will be a good time for anglers to target the resident trout population in Cairn Curran. Bait fishing over shallow grassy banks with worms, gents and corn are all good options. Targeting these areas with winged lures and shallowing diving hardbody lures will also produce a few trout over the next couple of months.


The productivity in the fishing in the Loddon River has only been average over the last month. Water clarity deteriorated due to water releases and inflows after recent rainfall. At the present time there are still small numbers of both Murray cod and golden perch being caught by anglers casting spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits. The occasional Murray cod is still being caught by anglers fishing the Loddon River at night with surface lures.

Surface lure fishing will slow down over the next few weeks as water temperatures get colder. The end of the irrigation season is in the middle of May. When the irrigation season finishes, less water will be released from Laanecoorie and Cairn Curran, so water clarity should improve. With the good rainfall that the region has experienced over the last month, whether the water clarity improves in the Loddon River will be largely determined by the amount of rainfall the region receives over the next couple of months.

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