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Dusty banks
  |  First Published: December 2002



Dusty banks

The effects of the drought are worsening across the State as our land becomes drier by the day and our rivers and reservoirs continue to drop.

We have had several storms out west in recent weeks but unfortunately all they have yielded was plenty of dust. The long-range forecast is unfortunately predicting more of the same.

The fishing, although having slowed somewhat, has remained consistent in most rivers. All rivers have remained low, with the Darling experiencing the lowest flow rates of the western rivers.

As temperatures have risen, the fishing in the Lachlan and Macquarie rivers has improved. Things have slowed down on the Darling but anglers are still reporting the capture of some sizeable fish. This holiday season should see a number of anglers on our waterways. Enjoy our resources on offer, and take care on the roads.

Bourke to Tilpa

The hot, dry conditions have resulted in a very low Darling River and the fishing remains restricted to the deeper holes. The good fishing experienced over the past few months has slowed down somewhat.

Anglers are reporting a drop in the numbers of fish caught but there are still some large fish being taken. Several Murray cod in the 2kg to 15kg range and quite a few golden perch up to 2kg have been captured. The majority of the fish have been taken trolling lures in water that has remained clear for several months now.

This month is usually very hot and with the low river levels, there is some concern for the well-being of native fish. Fishing this month will most likely continue to be restricted to the deeper holes and, given the water clarity, trolling lures will continue to be the favoured method.

Hillston, Condobolin

The Lachlan River has continued to remain low and clear and all signs suggest the river will stay this way through January. Although in poor condition, the Lachlan has produced a few fish. Baits of shrimp and worms have produced golden perch up to a kilo and several Murray cod to 5kg. Lure-casters have also reported a few fish.

This month should again see a low river. Those using lures or fishing with worms, shrimp and yabbies should encounter some fish. Areas to target seem to be wherever there is some running water, and in the deeper holes along the river.

Dubbo to Narromine

Anglers have encountered a low Macquarie River with plenty of algal growth. The Macquarie has remained clear and low but has maintained consistent flow rates. As water temperatures have risen there has been increased native fish activity.

Anglers around Narromine have reported good numbers of small cod on worm baits. Dubbo anglers have been taking Murray cod and the occasional trout cod up to 4kg. The most successful anglers have been trolling lures in deeper sections of the river or bobbing baits of prawn, worms or yabbies around structure. Due to a lack of shrimp in the river, anglers have resorted to using prawns.

The condition of the river should stay much the same this month. Look to fishing the deeper holes with lures or moving baits.

Apart from our environmental and agricultural doom and gloom at the moment there are still some good fish to be caught out there. Try to protect our fish stocks during these trying times by taking only what you need. Keep yourself and your family safe both on the water and the roads.

Photo Caption List:

Photo 1:

George Louden and Peter Swanson having some fun with a double hook-up on carp, taken trolling lures in the Darling River.

Photo 2:

The fishing has slowed down somewhat but there are still a few golden perch out on the Darling River.

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