Summer is now officially upon us and as the holiday season begins and the weather warms up, Frederick Henry Bay comes alive with boats as anglers head out in search of a fresh fish or two for the dining table; but what of those who don't have the luxury of a boat? Fear not, for all is far from lost!
Recently, the Advocate reported that a Butterfly Mackerel had been caught out off the mouth of the Mersey river. This fish is an uncommon catch in Tasmanian waters and continues the trend of uncommon fish turning up in our waters. If you catch an unusual fish and you are not sure what it is there is a great online resource called Redmap. Redmap, a new and interactive website, invites the Australian community to spot, log and map marine species that are uncommon in Australia, or along particular parts of our coast. It has pictures and information on Australian fish species and if you do catch something unusual then you can report where you caught it and this in turn will assist scientists by providing them with information on changing fish distribution. Have a look at www.redmap.org.au .
Life is very busy at the moment and unfortunately there is not much time for us to go fishing due to the demands of the retail world. There are plenty of customers coming in with tales of fishing trips and offers to go fishing with them. I am sure it’s just their way of rubbing it in.
We have had some positive reports regarding the western lakes in that there has already been some reasonable mayfly activity and some of the fish that have been caught have been in very good condition. Things are looking good as we move further into summer.
I had another trip out off Burnie (Behind the green tree) on Sunday with a mate and we found some good Flathead in about 40m of water. There were plenty of them and were some very big ones in the mix. We are so lucky to have quality fish to catch on our doorstep. I am sure the same could be done all along the coast. It’s just a matter of figuring out where the fish are.
Lake Kara has been a popular destination over the last week as the Inland Fisheries service released 540 Atlantic salmon. Lake Rosebery also received 540. The Salmon were donated by Springfield fisheries and I am sure that the many anglers who take the opportunity to catch these fish would like to thank them. The bag limit on both lakes has not been reduced however the IFS is urging anglers to limit their catch so that everyone can have a share of these fish.
The long weekend in November is always a popular time to go fishing. Many families will go camping or head to their shack for a spot of R & R and take the opportunity to wet a line.
Calamari Squid continue to be caught in good numbers and good size all along the North West coast. They can be caught from the shore however a boat certainly gives an advantage. If you want to kick back and take it easy try a pilchard with a squid skewer fished under a float. This is a very effective way of catching squid.
There are plenty of calamari squid being caught at the moment. Sisters beach is a popular and productive spot for them. One of the secrets to squid fishing is to anchor up and get a burley trail going and then fish your jigs into it. Use reasonably light flurocarbo leader and you will get more hook-ups. Better quality squid jigs will also catch more squid. If you don’t believe me then have a look at what the professionals use. Other places to try are Doctors Rocks at Wynyard, the Boat ramp at Emu Bay, Port Sorell and the bluff at Devonport. All are fishable from the shore.
Last weekend was fairly typical of spring in Tassie. Wind, Rain, Sunshine and I hear there was some snow in elevated areas. You can use it as an excuse not to go fishing or you can just accept it’s just the way it is and go anyway. I know of a few who ventured out for a fish and most were rewarded with a trout for tea. It was certainly not a good weekend to head out into the sea.
I had to go to Hobart last weekend and as I drove along the coast I was envious of the many people out in their boats. There were some good Flathead caught on the near perfect day. Sisters beach and Rocky cape were popular spots and a local told me that you don’t have to be very far out to catch good sized flathead.
I have written in some of my past articles with regard to some of the mindless acts of vandalism that have occurred in fishing areas. I was alerted to the latest act where the Great Lake lookout, at the top of haulage hill, was pulled over by some morons with a four wheel drive and a snatch strap. There are many other instances of lake shores being destroyed and rubbish being left for others to clean up.
I read an interesting article written by Greg French in the current issue of Freshwater Fishing concerning Trout growth and fisheries management. The article points out where there is ample or an abundance of food trout will do well and where food is scarce they will struggle. Fisheries management, (Water level and water quality) has a big influence on the ecology of lakes and in turn how much food is available. It is a well written story and well worth a read.
There are only a few days to go until all the Rainbow designated waters will close for the end of the season. There are still a number of waters open all year round and these will provide the diehard freshwater anglers with their fix while the other waters are closed. We often get asked why there is a closed season.
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that Lake Plimsoll could be worth a look in the latter part of the season as the water would be cooling down which is favourable for Brook Trout. Well you have one week left to go and there have been some good fish caught there recently.
Well we certainly had some interesting weather over Easter with Friday night being the pinnacle of extremes. We had a few phone calls on Saturday morning regarding broken tent poles and ripped tent fly’s. Spare a thought for the Father and Son who spent the night on top of Black Bluff. There experience was character building!
I am not sure where this year has gone but I have just realised that Easter is only a week away. It’s usually a popular time to go fishing and I am sure that this year we be no exception.
I had a great moment this week when a customer came into the shop and told us about how he had taken his grandson out fly fishing at the upper Inglis river. His grandson had been practicing his casting and has become reasonably proficient. They were standing at a pool and grandfather asked grandson where he thought the biggest trout would be sitting, grandson points out the spot and puts a dry fly over the spot which is promptly engulfed by a 2lb trout which was duly landed. I think proud grandfather got a bigger kick out of this fish than grandson and it goes to show what a fantastic sport fishing is for families spending quality time together.
The long weekend turned out to be a ripper with many anglers taking full advantage of the good weather. There were a lot of people up in the Highlands and I am told that the saltwater was very popular as well.
Arthurs Lake is starting to fish really well. The fish are in superb condition and if you want a few fish to take home for the table you won’t find any better.
Water levels are very high in Arthurs Lake and Great Lake and as a result there is a fair bit of debris floating in the water. Care needs to be taken when you are out on a boat because some of them are very hard to see so it would be good practice to slow down a little.
There are an ever increasing number of sea runners and resident fish being caught in estuaries along the coast. Bait numbers are building up and there are fish feeding on the bait. You can try any water flowing into the sea from small creeks to large rivers. If you look closely enough for long enough you will generally be able to see signs of Trout.
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