Presented from Issue 105, August 2013
We did a bit of a runaround Tasmania’s tackle stores to see what their tips for the first month or so of the tackle season were. We asked what the top three places to fish were, plus lures, flies, baits and a few other things.
Here is a rundown on their answers Whenever, and wherever you fish - anywhere, or for any fish in the world - ask the locals and especially ask at the local tackle store. They know what was caught today, yesterday and on what.
|Could this be the
last female carp
from Lake Sorell?
At the start of spring it was estimated that there were less than five carp in the Lake Sorell. Intensive fishing started in late October, as the water warmed and carp are known to become more active. The Carp Management Program staff set an average of over 7km of gill net every day in Lake Sorell, targetting likely carp habitat. After 362 days with no carp captured it was looking like there may have been none left! But the persistence paid off and three carp were caught in Lake Sorell during the period of hot weather in January. This brought the total number of carp removed from Lake Sorell to 41 499.
The hot, sunny, settled weather in January saw the water temperature hovering around 19 degrees, perfect for carp movement. The first carp for the 2020/21 season was caught on the 11/1/21, the second on the 12/1/21, and the third on the 14/1/21. The carp were a small female, and two small males which were both affected with advanced stages of the jelly gonad condition, making them sterile.
Although the female had 230gm of eggs, they were completely intact and she had not spawned. All three carp were very small for their age (839 to 1400gm), given they are likely to be over 11 years old. Given there hasn't been a successful spawning for many years we think it is increasingly likely that the carp population is unable to breed. The last sexually mature male was caught on 16 December 2018.
The intensive fishing continued through to early February but no further carp were captured. Given the low catch rates and the water temperatures now dropping, Lake Sorell was re-opened to the public on 6 Feb 2021. There has been no sign of spawning again this season and juvenile surveys will be undertaken in coming weeks to confirm this.
This follows the temporary closure of the lake to allow additional fishing effort to further drive down the remaining carp population.
After more than 26 years of carp eradication work 41,499 carp have been removed from Lake Sorell and screens are being maintained to prevent carp from escaping the lake.
This season, only three carp were caught during the peak fishing period from October 2020 until the end of January 2021. It is estimated that there are few, if any, carp remaining in Lake Sorell.
It is increasingly likely that carp will be eradicated from the lake.
This re-opening of Lake Sorell is part of the successful progression of the Carp Management Program, the program will continue with some further periods of closure until full eradication is achieved.
The trout population has been reduced by the intense carp fishing effort, however stock levels are expected to rebuild naturally over the coming years, similar to Lake Crescent where anglers are now catching trophy trout.
Access is available from Dago Point and Mountain Creek sides of the lake. Access via Silver Plains remains closed.
The Australia Day Long weekend saw many anglers take advantage of the idyllic weather and go trout fishing.
Over the weekend Officers from Inland Fisheries, Tasmania Police and Marine and Safety Tasmania patrolled waters state wide.
Overall 274 recreational angling inspections were completed. 121 recreational boating inspections were also conducted.
Under Inland Fisheries rules three people were found to be fishing without a licence, and one person was found to be using bait in an artificial lures only water.
Under Marine and Safety Tasmania rules four people were found not wearing their PFDs. Three vessels were found to be exceeding 5 knots in restricted areas and two had failed to display their boat registration numbers correctly.
Eight Conditional Cautions were issued for the wearing PFD’s that did not comply with the new AS4758.1 standard. The older style PFDs (AS1512 standard) were made obsolete on January 1st this year.
On Friday 22nd January 2021 David George McDERMOTT appeared in Devonport Magistrates Court on 34 charges relating to the illegal taking of whitebait.
Mr McDERMOTT pleaded guilty and was convicted on all charges. He was fined $13260.
The charges related to the taking of whitebait from the Mersey River in October 2019. The Mersey River was closed to the taking of whitebait at the time. Mr McDERMOTT was found by our Officers taking whitebait on several days.
Magistrate Jackie Harnett acknowledged the fragility of the whitebait fishery in her sentencing submission.
Whitebait regulations are in place for a reason. The fishery is fragile because of over fishing between the 1940’s and 1960’s. Illegal fishing for whitebait puts the species and recreational fishery at risk.
On Monday 25th January an angler found a gill net set in Four Springs Lake. He immediately reported it to IFS officers.
Officers responded quickly and removed the net. It was found to contain 6 trout. Thankfully the net had not captured any platypus.
We thank the angler that quickly passing the information on.
If you notice any illegal fishing activity in our inland waters please report it to us on either 0438 338 530 (Compliance phone number) or 1300 INFISH (1300 463 474). Our Officers can’t be everywhere so your help to protect our valuable inland fisheries is greatly appreciated!
From the CEO
Right now, recreational fishers are out in their tens of thousands around Tasmania, supporting small communities and businesses with their purchases. Our ability to have a positive impact on regional and remote communities that have been doing in tough in 2020 should not be underestimated. Someone recently said to me that recreational fishers don’t generate “new money” into Tasmania like the commercial sector does when it exports fish. That is largely true but it’s not the full picture. Each fishing sector plays an important economic role in Tasmania. As recreational fishers, our role is to circulate money throughout Tasmania. By fishing in coastal and regional communities, we are like veins – we pump money from the city centres of Tasmania out into the regions. Of Tasmania’s 29 Local Council Areas, 20 touch Tasmania’s coast line and with over 100,000 Tasmanians fishing every year our ability to support those communities through the simple act of going fishing is real.
As the Government continues to develop it’s 10-Year Recreational Fishing Strategy, TARFish continues to advocate for you with particular focus on: protected access arrangements to key species, infrastructure investment that makes it easier for people to go fishing, and funding for the long-term. We are seeking fair and protected outcomes for recreational fishers and to be fully recognised for the role we play in supporting Tasmania’s economy and its place in Tasmania’s way of life.
The strength of that advocacy comes from you, our members and I warmly welcome the hundreds of new members that have joined us in recent weeks. As the Government-recognised peak body, the Government will listen to our views but how hard they listen and how they respond is up to all of us. The more members we have, the harder we are to ignore. A single and united voice is a compelling one for Governments. As we approach both a state and federal election in the coming months it is important that we work together and throughout February TARFish will be visiting communities around Tasmania to meet with recreational fishers. Dates and locations will be available from our website by the end of the week and we’ll promote them on our Facebook page. I encourage all recreational fishers to come along and share their views on what a positive recreational fishing future looks like and how we can get there. Your views will shape the ongoing development of TARFish’s position on the things that matter most to recreational fishers and how we can work for you to deliver results.
When is the new standard effective from?
From 1 January 2021, all life jackets in Tasmania on recreational boats will need to be approved to AS4758.
|Fisheries Officer Paul Middleton
with a brown trout from
Four Springs Lake
During May 2020 we carried out a major survey of the fish population at Four Springs Lake to assess the trout population. This information along with past stockings numbers and angler catch information collected since 1999, have been assessed and reported. A final report is now available on the IFS website at: About Us - Publications - Fishery Performance Assessment Reports.
Additionally, our hard working compliance staff have been out collecting some interesting creel data from fishers at Four Springs Lake. Since the start of the season, 675 fishers have been checked at Four Springs. Of these, 383 had been fishing for one or more hours, while the remainder were just about to start fishing or had only just commenced. The average time spent fishing by these fishers was 4 hours.
Of the 383 fishers interviewed, they caught 326 brown trout and 132 rainbow trout. Table 1 below shows the number of brown trout caught and kept, the number of sized fish caught and released, and the number of undersized fish returned.
A 5 fish daily bag limit applies to Atlantic salmon in inland waters
With the recent arrival of 'escapee' Atlantic salmon in inland waters anglers need to be aware that regulations apply.
Each person must have a current angling licence to fish with a rod, reel and line in any inland waters.
A 5 fish daily bag limit applies to Atlantic salmon in inland waters.
The two main rivers where salmon are being caught are the Huon and the Derwent. An angling licence is required to take Atlantic salmon (and trout) above the following boundaries.
Huon River- Above an imaginary straight line drawn between a white post situated on the shore of the southern side of Castle Forbes Bay and another white post situated to the eastward of that post on the opposite bank of the Huon River.
River Derwent – Above a line between Dowsings Point to Store Point.
For the seaward limits of other rivers go to the Inland Fisheries (Seaward Limits) Order 2004
For more information go to the Tasmanian Inland Fishing Code 2020-21
Fisheries Officer on patrol in
The Christmas/New Year holiday period was popular for trout fishing. Our officers conducted 336 recreational fishing and 101 boating safety inspections at key waters around the state. Fishing conditions were good during the period, with a mixture of sunny and overcast days accompanied with light winds and minimal rain:
Great Lake – Anglers trolling anglers caught good fish around the northern end of the lake, with cobra lures and flat fish. In bright conditions, trolling deep was more effective, whilst surface lures worked well in the evening. For the fly anglers plenty of fish were up feeding on the surface in the windlanes.
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Hello everyone, I thought it would be a good time to introduce myself.
My name is Stephen Smith and I have been managing the website tasfish.com since May 2009.
It has been an epic journey of learning and discovery and I am indebted to Mike Stevens for his help, support and patience.
I am developing a new venture Rubicon Web and Technology Training ( www.rwtt.com.au ). The focus is two part, to develop websites for individuals and small business and to train people to effectively use technology in their everyday lives.
Please contact me via www.rwtt.com.au/contact-me/ for further information - Stephen Smith.
by Sarah Graham
Many anglers are preparing for the opening of the new angling season on Saturday 7 August and it's shaping up to be another good one with the fishery in excellent health as a result of last year’s drought breaking rains. There are many great fishing locations around the State from which to choose for the opening weekend and early season fishing but here are a few suggestions.