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Trophy trout on the hunt
  |  First Published: August 2006



Some very good trout have been caught this season with several trophy fish around the magical 10lb (4.5kg). The majority of fish are keen to hit just about anything, whether it be bait, lure or fly, so it’s worth rugging up and trying them.

Gold wing Tassies or those with red in them have been getting the majority of the fish on the troll but 5cm to 7cm Rapalas and Jackalls have received plenty of attention from the trout as well.

Bardis and worms are working well and are a good option at the moment with the dam rising fairly steadily over the past month or so. With the water covering new ground just about every day, it can be very murky.

I believe this murky water increases your chances of catching those monsters that generally hide out in deeper water in the middle of the day and can normally be caught only at night. But this rising water seems to keep the bigger fish more active during the day.

The majority of the Blowering trout being caught are rainbows with the odd brown. Around 30,000 rainbows have been stocked annually over the past 10 years and only 70,000 brown trout in total were stocked in 2001-2003. Anglers will be pleased to hear that there were 6000 more browns stocked by Fisheries in mid-June.

Native chasers will be happy to hear that there were around 50,000 silver perch stocked in 2005 which will start popping up in catches over the next few seasons. I don’t know of any being caught as yet as they would probably be a bit too small. If you’ve caught one or know of someone catching one I’d love to hear about it so don’t hesitate to email me or send me a picture.

Cod fishing has been pretty slow, as can be expected this time of the year, but the fish that have been caught have been pretty big. The best I’ve heard of was around 36kg and was caught over the June long weekend.

Best technique has been bait fishing off the bank with grubs or yabbies, particularly overnight around the full or new moon. Trolling is getting the odd cod, as is repeat casting with spinnerbaits, but be prepared to put a few hours’ work in between fish. But with cod around the magical 100lb (45kg) it’s hard to say that it’s not worth the work or the wait.

CRAYFISH MANIA

The last month of Winter has finally come, spelling an end to the lobster (Murray crayfish) season and boy, will they be relieved!

Over the past couple of months there have been that many pots in at times that most anglers trolling have had to weave between lobster pot floats, trying not to hook them. Luckily for the crayfish DPI Fisheries has been policing Blowering Dam almost every weekend, making sure that everyone’s doing the right thing. Officers tell me that the vast majority are but, as always, a few disregard these rules and the officers will soon make them aware.

After a good start to the season the lobsters have been hard to find and I’d say they probably will be for the final month of the season. I believe the numbers just aren’t there. A four-year break for these guys was great but crays take around seven years to reach legal size and it seems a longer break of at least seven or even 10 years might have benefited a bit more. If we had a break like this I think we might end up with populations similar to yesteryear’s but asking people to not take crays for 10 years might cause a few arguments.

REDFIN PERSIST

Redfin have been caught all Winter, which is not really the norm. They are down fairly deep, anywhere between 9m and 16m, and can be caught with ice jigs or Jackalls.

Or you can use deep bass techniques like soft plastics on 1/2oz or 5/8oz jig heads slow-rolled back up and through the school, which can work unbelievably well. My favourite plastics are Ecogear 3” Power Shads in rainbow trout colour, Ecogear Grass Minnows, Sliders and Berkley Gulps.

Bobbing bait around the trees and open flats in 9m to 16m is accounting for some good reddies as well, with big yabbies and garden worms working best. I’ve heard of, and caught some reddies myself around 1.7kg over the past month or so and hope this size trend continues through the cooler months.

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