Techniques for a successful native fish season
'Techniques for a successful native fish season'
By Rod Cockburn @ Rod's Custom Rods The Compleat Angler

Hey Fishos,

We are starting off our summer fishing with low water levels in most impoundments with the exception being Blowering Dam, which has over 60% capacity. Even though the Dams are low the fishing will be good as water temperatures in the rivers will be up which will give us a long season and some quality catches. The clarity of our rivers and Dams is and should be excellent most of the summer, opening up some great opportunities for lure fishing.

Yellowbelly taken recently at Hume Weir

A nice batch of Redfin and Yellowbelly taken recently at Hume Weir

The Yellowbelly have started to move in Blowering as well as the Hume Weir, which is what we expected. Conditions are perfect for big Yellowbelly and the bonus is the Redfin have started to run again as well as some good-sized Cod. The technique of trolling with shallow running lures is still the go in Blowering. To have success in clear water we need to first assess the situation on the day. In most cases the water will be relatively flat and calm, extremely clear and you will need to troll in less than 10ft of water. Your success rate will depend on how you approach the fishing on the day. For a start if the water is less than 10ft in depth you will need to use lures that will run at less than that depth.

There are a few great lures that are perfectly suited to this situation. On the top of the list is the Nilsmaster 8cm in a range of colours, the most popular being the Parrot. Rainbow and Brown Trout are also very successful in both the Nilsmaster and the Rapala CD7. A locally made lure that has accounted for a huge amount of big Yellowbelly is the shallow running small Extractor. When trolling the shallows you need to run the lure a long way behind the boat to get away from any motor noise. If you run a Honda Four stroke outboard you will find it is very quiet and will not spook as many fish. Also try trolling with a Motor Guide Electric motor, you will be amazed at the results. I you are not set up to troll quietly try drifting and casting, or walking the bank as these methods also produce great results.

The Hume Weir has large numbers of big Yellowbelly as well, however the techniques do vary a little there. We seem to find the best catches in about 15 to 20ft of water, therefore different lures are required. The best lures for the Hume Weir being medium Extractors, UD Merlins or McGraths. Colours do vary of course but fluro green or Trout patterns are very successful. Very good numbers of Redfin are usually caught in the Weir while trolling for Yellowbelly. When fishing for these big Yellowbelly we suggest you use 10 to 20lb Braid line with 20lb leaders. The best type of fishing rod to use would be a 6’6” to 7’ soft Precision X balanced with a Penn Pursuit 3000 reel. A perfect outfit for this type of fishing.