Otago Reel Life January 2019
Heat wave hits the south
In late January, temperatures across the region soared above 30°C with a mix of windy and dry conditions.
Fishing on the large lakes has been tough during the heat of the day with anglers enjoying better success early morning and at dusk.
The upper Clutha river fished well during January.
Anglers were treated to rising fish during the day, and the evening caddis hatch on balmy evenings. This looks set to continue!
Fishing at Poolburn Reservoir was slow at the start of the season, but has picked up considerably.
Toip right: David Mackenzie with a nice 4.6lb brown trout recently harvested from Poolburn Reservoir.
Anglers have been reporting good catches with some very nicely conditioned fish.
Lowland estuaries have made good hunting grounds for anglers, with a choice of sea- run brown trout, or kahawai on the right tide.
Sea-run salmon are starting to make an appearance on the lower Clutha River.
February brings the real start of the cicada season.
Our inland reservoirs are famous for summer cicada fishing, so here’s hoping a sustained period of warm temperatures will prevail.
Most imitations will fool fish and generally if there's a feeding frenzy “any ole floating thing will do.”
If you're heading into the backcountry, be sure you have a few selections in your fly box.
February 1 marks the start of the controlled fishery on the Greenstone River (tributary of Lake Wakatipu) that requires anglers to use a booking system.
Bookings can be made up to five days in advance of your intended fishing trip, including the intended day of fishing.
You can select up to a maximum of three consecutive days per booking.
Please be considerate of other anglers - we recommend a limit of two consecutive days fishing per trip.
Beats are booked via an online booking system which operates on a first come, first served basis.
A booking may be made for one primary angler and one companion angler who must both hold an appropriate Whole Season Fishing Licence and Otago Backcountry Licence Endorsement.
Please click on this link for full details.
Lake Wanaka angler interviews
Angler surveys on Lake Wanaka are ongoing.
Fish & Game staff head out to interview anglers on random days.
Their licence information, fishing methods and catch details are recorded, and the data summarised - crucial information to assess the health of the fishery.
We have particular interest in the landlocked salmon fishery.
So anglers are asked to freeze salmon heads and include information on their weight and length along with the date and area of the lake where they were caught.
Please send the info to Fish & Game officer at:
The surveys are expected to continue into the 2019/20 season.
February 9, 2019 ---- Lake Hawea Family Fishing Classic
February 17,2019 ---- Alexandra Fishing Club TAKF at Earnscleugh
For complaints about pollution or damage to rivers, contact the Otago Regional Council (ORC) 24-hour pollution hotline on 0800-800 033.
Up to date river flow information can be found on the ORC site here
Cliff Halford Fish & Game Officer, Cromwell
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