Reel Life

By Shepparton News

Speak to any angler and they are always keen to tell you about their fishing deeds.

With the exception of revealing exactly where their favourite fishing spot is. It is as if this place belongs to them and them alone.

As we all know, this is far from the truth.

All rivers and streams are accessible to all members of the public and the spot you call your own is most likely the exact same spot more than a dozen other anglers have put claim to.

To say you have a secret spot is only in your mind.

And the amount, size and regularity of a catch from this spot depends on your fishing ability, the type of bait, time of day and the mood of the fish.

The spot you fished last week that yielded great results may well be snooze-ville this week.

The secret to catching fish on a regular basis is to firstly go fishing.

Be prepared to try different baits or lures and be on the move.

If one spot is quiet, move to another.

Forget about a secret spot, that is just a myth — like the supposed graveyard of elephants, where pachyderms go to meet their maker and which is said to be full of ivory.

It reminds me of the not-so-bright angler who had a streak of luck while fishing from a boat, landing fish after fish.

On his return to the jetty he was asked where the spot was.

He answered, I can take you to it right now: I put a cross on the side of the boat to mark the spot.

Around the region, fishing has started to pick up.

The Goulburn has dropped to around its normal level for this time of year and the water is clearing as the flow rate slows.

Between Shepparton and Nagambie the number of yellow belly being caught has increased, as well as an occasional cod as a by-catch.

They must be released, as we now have about four more weeks before the season reopens.

Below the Broken River where it joins the Goulburn it is not as good but still worth a try — not so much in the town, but around Reedy Swamp and the back of the golf course are two areas worth fishing.

Lake Eildon is still the most popular spot with anglers, with a variety of fish to target, including yellow belly, cod, trout and redfin.

Best spots are the Big River, Delatite and Jerusalem Creek Arms, as well as around Fraser National Park and in front of the wall.

I am also starting to hear good things about trout fishing in the rivers and streams in the north east.

The upper Ovens near Harrietville, the Star River around Bright and Lake William Hovell are all worth a try with minnow-style lures, as well as small-bladed spinners and bait such as scrub worms and mud eye.

Trout are still being caught at Dartmouth but they are now moving into deep water as the temperature warms up.

Lead line or down riggers will be needed to reach them during the day, although early morning is still the best time of day.

Waranga Basin is worth a try for redfin and yellow belly, while the irrigation channels are also worth a go,

Yellow belly and redfin will take bait or lures, but keep moving and fish close to the banks for best results.

At Queenscliff, Rod Lawn from Adamas Fishing Charters said it was snapper galore both inside the heads and off shore.

He said bigger fish were taken off Mornington while larger, plate-size fish were the norm around the heads and off the coast.

Rod said squid and whiting were biting in the grass beds between the Lonsdale Pier and the ferry terminal, with silver trevally schooling near the mouth of the creek.

It is snapper time off Hastings in Western Port Bay and the best action was on the change of tides.

Fresh fish fillets and squid were the best bait, while gummy shark and flathead were also being caught; the former in the deeper water near Cowes.

At Eden, Mark from Freedom Charters reported snapper, morwong and other reef fish from along the coast to Green Cape, and some kingfish were had off the shelf.

Graham Cowley from Narooma said his son Nicholas was bagging plenty of good-sized flathead from along the sandy bottom between the reefs, and other table fish, including perch, gurnard, snapper and morwong.

Flinders Island, according to James Luddington, was starting to pick up, with snapper, salmon, leather jacket and an occasional kingfish proving an option for the ever-present gummy shark and flathead.

He said some trumpeter had been reported off the shelf but it was still to early for albacore.