Reel Life August 2018
Signs of spring are everywhere – and one of those early signs is that licences for the new trout and salmon season are now on sale!
While your new 2018-19 licence can't be used until October 1, your old licence is still current all the way through to September 30.
That means you can get out now on the wide range of rivers and lakes which have remained open over winter and blow the cobwebs out of your angling skills.
It doesn't matter if you're a spin or fly angler, now is the time to practice your casting so that when the new season arrives, you can make the most of the great spring and summer fishing which will be available.
And there are some great opportunities waiting for the new season to open.
In the Auckland/Waikato region, Fish & Game staff say recent returns from Lake Arapuni have been impressive with several large browns caught over the past few weeks.
They add that although many streams have been high recently, post spawning fish should be actively feeding and on the move.
Rotorua staff in the Eastern region say they're encouraged by an excellent winter run of "solid rainbows" at their Lake Tarawera fish trap.
In Wellington, the word is that the mild winter and lack of significant floods has set the season up to be a "cracker", with the prediction that "anglers can expect to encounter fish much heavier – and feistier…"
Down south, in the Central South Island, there are fishing opportunities galore at the Mackenzie basin canals and seven Waitaki catchment hydro lakes.
Across the Southern Alps, it's a badly kept secret that lower reaches of West Coast rivers fish well early in the season.
It's a similar story from Nelson Marlborough staff who say that September fishing can be "fantastic" on some of their open lowland rivers.
In Otago, all the main lakes have been fishing well with reports of fat fish and enjoyable angling. Staff say the Lake Dunstan spawning run has produced some "amazing" fish over four kilos.
In a number of areas, brown trout spawning is over and hungry browns are trying to rebuild their condition by cruising the shallow lake margins in September "looking for anything edible." So anglers, wherever you are, get amongst it!
P.S. Kids are in the spotlight! This month's cover pics show hardy Madeline and Jack in the Motueka River (who needs waders?). And left, at Lake Taharoa up north, Crystal Prins with her catch, snapped by her Dad Rod
P.P.S - If you think you've got a freshwater fishing image worthy of featuring on our 'cover', email it to Richard Cosgrove for consideration.
Vote for angling
The Fish & Game council elections are underway and all anglers are being urged to make sure they enrol on the electoral roll and make sure they cast a vote. And if you want to stand for one of the country's 12 regional Fish & Game councils, you have a couple of days left to put your name forward. Enrolling on the electoral roll is straightforward – when you buy your new season fishing licence, simply tick the appropriate box. That way you can have your say in how your freshwater fisheries are managed. Click here for more information.
Lake snow spreads
Only weeks from the start of the new freshwater fishing season, the invasive pest lake snow has been discovered in more North Island lakes. In mid-winter, it was confirmed the microscopic algae – known as Lindavia intermedia - had been found in the Waikato and Manawatū-Whanganui regions for the first time. In the South Island, the algae has developed into mucus-like strings known as lake snow or lake snot. While it is not a known health threat, it can clog fishing and boating equipment. The algae is already confirmed in Lake Taupo, Lake Rotoaira and Lake Waikaremoana. Read more here.
Doing your bit
Anglers often access waterways across farms so we need to take steps to ensure that we help prevent the spread of the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis. While the contamination risk posed by anglers crossing through farms to access waterways is very low, farmers are entitled to be reassured that we are all taking the threat they are facing seriously. Fish & Game has worked with the Ministry for Primary Industries and Federated Farmers to develop advice for anglers on how to deal with the threat of Mycoplasma bovis. Have a look here.
Think ahead so you don't miss out on a kids' fishing day!
Kids 'fish out' days are great fun and the perfect way to give children a first taste of trout fishing.
The events are so popular now that bookings are essential. Kids fishing events are on the way in Rotorua and Taranaki, to name only a couple of regions. Click here for the latest updates on childrens' fishing events round the country.
Plan now to fish later
Labour Weekend is bearing down fast…it's a perfect time to start planning some summer breaks – and work some fishing into your R & R. Licences for the 2018-19 season went on sale on August 21.
There's no beating the value of a 'fish everywhere all season' Whole Season licence ($130), but there are plenty of other great choices. If you've planned a long weekend near some good fishing spots, a Short Break licence ($47) is ideal. It sets you up perfectly for three days fishing in a row. A Long Break licence ($91) covers nine days – in other words you're all set for nine days of fishing on end – or two weekends and the five days in between. If you're a complete newbie who wants to have a go, a $21 One Day licence is a bargain.
Click here for details.
If you would like to advertise in the above banner position and directly reach the fishing community across New Zealand, please contact Don Rood.
Graeme Marshall shares some advice for hooking a canal monster…
Find out more
Chris Dore has a great early season 'angler's checklist'…
Find out more
Martin Langlands reflects on the best winter river fishing ever…
Find out more
NZFFA President David Haynes asks do we need tighter controls on backcountry fishing…
Find out more
Creasy's Column - By Hugh Creasy
Spring chores are many. The lawn is moss-strewn and patchy, and weeds dot the vegetable patch, but the call of the river is too strong. I must give an answer. Winter has not been wasted. New leaders have been attached to old lines and with a bit of luck the lines will last out the season. Some judicious cleaning has them brightly polished. My fly boxes are filled in colourful array, with nymphs aplenty and pretty dries looking soldierly in ordered ranks. There are gaudy Wooly Buggers and sombre Mrs Simpsons – and oldie but a goody in the evenings – with a smattering of Parson's Glories if there are little fish in sight. A few whitebait imitations in plainer vestments complete the larger lures.
I put new rings on a replaced rod tip, lubricated the reels for my old rod and had a practice cast on the front lawn with my new rod, a weight five that brings joy with every stroke. If only I can catch a fish worthy of its grace and of its price.
Everything is checked and rechecked, and all seems to be well. It remains for the knots to hold and the leader strength to be what is printed on the label. Continue reading here.
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