WE ARE now into the time of year when our fish start chasing bait and lures in the shallows. Larger profile lures are on the menu this month for our freshwater species. Big spinnerbaits, lipless crankbaits, jerkbaits and big rubbers should pull plenty of strikes.
Golden perch are a prime target at this time of the year. As the water warms these fish become very active and are a very good sportfish. Rocky areas, standing trees, logs and weedbeds are all areas to check for goldens because they love structure! Slower retrieves with pauses and jiggles seem to do the trick most of the time for this species.
On the rumour mill this month is a push to get the bass bag limit raised to five fish in possession! This push is again hidden behind the curtain of give and take fisheries. Why are people so hell bent on broad bag limits? Why not just let people take any number they like until there are none left, and then restock? That would be the quickest way to kill an industry that has thrived on bass.
In my opinion there is only one reason anglers can catch the bass so easily, have so much fun, and keep coming back – the bag limit of two bass in possession. When there are so many bass in there that you have to hide behind a tree to put your lure on, I’ll let you know. The reason people don’t catch more golden perch is because the bag limit is too high (10 per person) and they get plundered when they’re biting, not because the bass bag limit is too low.
One possibility is to take the harder road of slot limits and boat limits on bass. This method would promote sportfishing and let the meat fisho have an extra couple of fish. Let’s say you were allowed four bass in possession and up to eight per boat, with a minimum size of 30cm fork length and a maximum size of 38cm fork length. That would allow a boat to take eight bass between about 600g and 1kg, which is a good feed. This would preserve our stocks of trophy fish that make it over the 38cm mark for the majority of anglers who want to catch big bass and release them.
If I had the choice I’d leave the limit at two in possession. What’s your opinion?
At Moogerah Dam this month the fishing will be easy with the low water levels and condensed fish. Spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits are my pick of the lures. The same applies at Maroon Dam.
Further west, Glenlyon Dam fires at this time of the year for big Murray cod and golden perch. Trolling at night with big lures is popular here. Casting surface lures, plastics and spinnerbaits in the same areas should produce the goods for the guys who don’t like chugging around all day or night.
If you’d like a charter on one of the dams give me a ring at Greenfish Sportfishing on 0407 596 814. More information is available at www.greenfish.com.au.
1) As the water warms the bass and goldens start to take spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits in the shallows.Reads: 633