Reel Life April 2019

  • 30/04/2019

Reel Life April 2019

 Don’t hang up your fishing gear just yet…May can produce some sunny days and very satisfying trout fishing.

In both the North and South islands there are lots of waterways, rivers and lakes, that remain open.   

May is an excellent month to get out and fish these open waterways as many areas close for spawning in a matter of weeks (check your regulation booklet to be sure your chosen spot is open). 

Trout at this time of year are typically trying to gain last minute condition prior to spawning, and often feeding hungrily. In some areas, in the right conditions, insect hatches can still happen.

In the North Island, rainbows have begun their spawning runs “way ahead” of normal at Lake Tarawera, where fish are trapped for Fish & Game’s ‘big fish’ breeding programme (the big browns start their spawning earlier).

The word from staff is get out fishing now by boat and at shoreline spots – as fish are in peak condition.

Down south, the Mackenzie Basin canals are a great destination in May, arguably the best sports fishing option in the country for the month.

Cover shot Reel Life April 2019 resized

Read Graeme Marshall’s column for some intriguing ‘how to’ tips for success on the canals.        

In Canterbury, high country lakes Loch Katrine and Lake Sumner are still open and worth a look on a sunny day. Lake Forsyth is open all year and remains a good destination for well-conditioned browns.

A lot of the larger West Coast lakes are still open and with the water temperatures much cooler, the trout tend to be more opportunist feeders and fight harder.

Three cheers for the Blenheim man who won the Lake Argyle fishing competition and promptly donated his prize of a $500 Henderson’s fishing store voucher to junior anglers. 

This person, who wants to remain anonymous, purchased five spinning rods with reels and asked that they be given to any juniors who handed in tag returns from the Lake Argyle contest.  

P.S. Thanks to John Milligan for the photo (by wife Shirley) of his hefty 6.5lb rainbow hauled from Lake Alexandrina in the Mackenzie Country.


Fishing News


Fish frenzy: Does proposed legislation threaten freshwater fishing?
Trout fishing's future is at risk, say opponents of a bill wending through Parliament. The proposal seeks to clarify existing law and protect native species, according to those who support the measure. Reporter Dawn Picken wades through the issues to learn why local anglers feel they're swimming upstream. Click here.


'It's like icebergs floating down the river'
Pollution watchdogs are continuing to investigate the source of a white foamy discharge seen on the Waikato River through Hamilton over the last two days.The unidentified substance is entering the river through a stormwater pipe located at the northern end of the St Andrews golf course and had formed a three kilometre trail along the river's western bank. Read here. (Photo Chrystel Yardley, Stuff)


Dung beetle role in protecting waterways
Dung beetles could provide the helping hand the region needs for disposing of farm faeces and protecting waterways, Otago Regional councillor Andrew Noone says. Cr Noone said he was first introduced to the use of the bugs for managing animal waste on farms by a member of the public. Details here and


Fish & Game ready to fight for hatchery
Otago Fish & Game Council chairman Monty Wright (pictured) says the council is ready to fight to make sure Contact Energy builds a salmon hatchery at the Roxburgh Dam, as a Contact Energy spokesman says a hatchery is only one option being considered. Councillors revisited the hatchery issue at a recent meeting in Cromwell, following a presentation from Contact community relations and projects manager Neil Gillespie to the council in February.) click here. (photo ODT).


Fishing aplenty with winter licences
With cooler weather now kicking in, Fish & Game says there’s plenty of opportunity for trout fishing ahead for those yet to buy a fishing licence. Winter season licences became available on April 1. They provide six months of fishing until the end of September. Read here.

Are you an angler who hunts? Don’t forget to buy your licence for the start of the game bird season this weekend (Saturday, May 4). Click here to grab one online.



Streamside with...


Graeme Marshall Graeme Marshall spools out a variety of approaches for hooking up at the canals, that provide some of May’s best fishing Find out more


Chris Dore says dress warm, there’s plenty of fishing to come…
Find out more


Creasy's Column - By Hugh Creasy

Winter is coming. Give thanks.

Give thanks for the chill water washing green slime from river bed rock; give thanks for floods that wash humanity’s detritus out to sea and out of sight; give thanks for the floods that tumble boulders and grind them to sand and gravel and form beds for life’s great cycle to turn once again.

In the space between great events the hen trout hurries to wash a stony bed, drawn by chill waters. It is her season and the eggs she carries hold the future of her kind. She makes a bed with quivering tail, in gravel chosen for its size and placement to be the best place for her progeny’s survival. There is an air of desperation about her, and it may be her last act before death. She cleans as best she can, the stony nest, and expels her eggs, while her mate covers them with milt, and swims aside while she covers the redd with fine gravel and stones to protect their treasure.

Continue reading here



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