G'day fishos. Thanks to Willow for filling in for me while I hit a few estuaries over on the coast last week, chasing flathead and whatever else we could find with fins.
I had a great trip landing plenty of flatties along with a few bream, whiting, bass and colourful gurnards, plus an octopus or two.
Fish were all picked up between Narooma to Bega as we tripped to different possies each day.
Back home, there was a bit of a scare in the river below the wall and beyond last week.
Pockets of water coming through Hume had very low oxygen levels, causing crays to crawl out of the water.
There were a couple of fish deaths from what I can ascertain. Apparently authorities got onto it pretty quickly.
Samples of oxygen levels just below the wall, as well as those taken just above and below the influence of the Kiewa, showed improvement when the valves were opened at the dam in substitute of the turbines, to help increase oxygen levels.
If you haven't seen them working, the valves spray the water out pretty spectacularly - creating a more oxygenated river - whereas the turbines basically let the water flow through from the lake.
At this stage no further problems have been reported and we can assume the authorities will be monitoring it closely.
One theory on the pocket or layer of deoxygenated water in Hume is that it was caused by above-average quantities of nutrients entering the lake during run-off after last year's bushfires.
Another issue I've been told about is people dumping redfin carcasses into the Murray.
This is an offence, and not just any old offence. It comes under the Biosecurity Act, and fines in this area are horrendous.
I know I fillet my fish at home, freeze the frames and skins, then put them in the green lid bin, which is what I'm sure most fishos do.
Dartmouth (63.4 per cent) - has been a bit slow over the past week or so, from what we've been hearing.
Hopefully things pick up a bit, and with this cooler weather about, you'd think a few might start feeding a little higher in the water column.
Streams - have been very consistent, fishing really well whenever they've been left alone by the rain.
It's been one of the better years as far as the quality of stream trout go, too.
If I was heading up, I'd be arming myself with a bit of everything, because everything and anything seems to be catching fish.
Fly, lure and bait fishos have all been doing well.
The Murray - below Albury was very quiet last week, with a lot of fishos struggling.
Water levels have jumped dramatically this week though, so you'd think there'd be a marked improvement.
Maybe the average fishing was something to do with those low oxygen levels. Cod in most other areas are still going strong by all reports.
Blowering (76.1 per cent) - is also firing, with lots of reddies showing up to play along with some decent yellas and an odd cod.
The same methods described above for Hume are working at Blowering, but bait fishing worms is really popular.
Snowy Lakes - are all dropping slightly and are pretty hard work at the moment.
If we continue to get reasonable rains we might see a big improvement on this year's spawning run. Let's keep our fingers crossed.
Lake Hume (52.6 per cent) - is still putting on one of the best seasons in living memory.
The reddies are still well and truly on the chew, and size seems to be getting slightly better from most reports.
A lot of fishos have got past the excitement of just actually being able to catch a fish out there - keeping almost everything - and are now setting themselves a size limit.
From what we're hearing at the Compleat Angler, 25cm seems to be the personal minimum for many these days.
The bulk of the fish most fishos are bringing in seem to be in that 25cm to 30ish range, with a few to 35cm or just overthrown on top if you're lucky.
Even talking to the Fisheries boys, the average size of reddies they're checking in people's Eskies has picked up a couple of centimetres over the past couple of months or so, and why wouldn't they.
The amount of tucker out there is still staggering.
Trolling, bait fishing and the ever-reliable vibes and blades are all donging them, but you're not doing yourself any favours if you aren't running a plastic above all of the above.
Our favourite has been the Strike Tiger Nymphs or curly tail grubs, but most plastics seem to be catching fish.
There were also more fish releases in Hume this week this week.
About 35,000 cod and 64,000 yellas were let go at Bowna and Kurragong ramps respectively, great news for our future fishos.
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