Weekly Fishing Report for Central South Island and North Canterbury for January 26 2023

  • North Canterbury Central South Island
  • 26/01/2023


Rangers out in force

A joint Fish & Game ranger training and night-ranging operation held over the weekend of 21-22 January resulted in several sports fishing offences being detected at the Mackenzie hydro canals.

Twelve Central South Island and North Canterbury Fish & Game rangers were active simultaneously at the Mackenzie Basin hydro canal fishery on Saturday and Sunday with a focus on night-time ranging.

Above Right: Honorary Fish & Game Ranger Allan Gillespie checks on compliant angler Hans Van Leeuwen at the Ōhau B Canal near Twizel - photo by Rhys Adams

The operation resulted in rangers completing 192 angler interviews and the detection of 6 individuals offending.

Offences detected included fishing without a sports fishing licence, continuing to fish after taking the daily bag limit and fishing with more than one rod.

No offences were detected at night.

All sports fishing offences are criminal offences subject to the Conservation Act 1987. Prosecution in the District Court can result and may include forfeiture of any gear and fish seized.

Ask a ranger

Many anglers, when being checked on by a ranger, take the opportunity to clarify a regulation that’s got them thinking.

You don’t have to be checked on by a ranger on the riverbank to get clarification.

Feel free to get in touch with one of our four Fish & Game staff rangers.

Contact our Temuka office, by phone - at 03 615 8400 during office hours or anytime by email - csi@fishandgame.org.nz 

Outlook for the weekend

Caleb Ryder had success on a recent trip to Lake Opuha - catching this brown on a humpy dry fly.

It is a promising outlook for fishing this weekend.

Rivers are trending towards summer low levels – although a wet early summer has the river in pretty good nick generally.

With only a few showers of rain in the forecast for overnight Friday, we are not expecting much change in flows over the coming days.

The exception to this is the Waitaki River, with flows generated through the Waitaki Power station changing constantly with generation demand. Waitaki flows are practically unpredictable for anglers – but they can be monitored in real-time.

It is always worth checking the Kurow flow recorder on the ECan website before venturing out for a fish on the Waitaki river.

Generally, flows under 280 cumecs are best for anglers fishing from the shoreline and flow under 350 cumecs are best for jet boating anglers.   

Jay Graybill to retire as CSI’s Chief Executive

The recent announcement of Jay Graybill’s retirement has attracted further interest in the media, with the Timaru Herald covering the story this week.

Click here to view the article. 

Notice Board

Lake Pūkaki spill notice

Meridian Energy have notified that spilling may occur at any point on Friday or through the weekend from the Lake Pūkaki Spillway (Gate 19). 

Spilling may affect anglers' fishing and accessing the Tekapo/Takapō River below its confluence with the Pūkaki River.  

Bi-monthly meeting of Central South Island Fish and Game Council 

The next Council meeting is to be held on 9 February, 7:30 pm at 32 Richard Pearse Drive, Temuka. 

Licence holders and members of the public are welcome to attend. 

Tight Lines

Rhys Adams, Central South Island Fish & Game Officer 


Outlook for the weekend 

The weekend is looking good for some fishing, it’s going to be hot on some days, and anglers should take extra care if they are planning on releasing any caught fish. 

Make sure they aren’t dragged up onto the hot stones. 

The number one rule for those releasing fish is to keep them in cool water!

You can learn more in this short video

John Proffitt-White, right, sent in a picture of his 5 kg salmon caught on New Year's Day at the mouth of the Waimakariri River on a 24g silver lure. 

He’s holidaying in the South Island till early February, so has his fingers crossed that another salmon may come his way. 

He says, “wow, what a moment”!  

He plans to go into the upper reaches of our rivers to try for trout as well. 

One of Honorary Rangers Tony Hallams photographed Peter Woodrow, with his salmon caught at 10.35 am Sunday, 22 January, on the south side of the Waimakariri River Mouth. 

Clare Enoka sent us a link to a salmon article in the Los Angeles Times for our interest; of note, the LA Times has been doing a series of articles recently on salmon recovery efforts in California. 

All of New Zealand’s chinook salmon came from the Baird Hatchery on the McCloud River in California.

The LA Times has also covered the efforts of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe’s salmon recovery programme, which both Central South Island and North Canterbury Fish and Game have been involved with for a number of years. 

Salmon Videos

Yesterday in the January Issue of Reel Life, we posted the link to our first of five sea-run salmon fishing how-to videos for anglers. 

Fish & Game Officer Harry Graham-Samson partnered with experienced salmon anglers Simon McMillan (Hunting & Fishing Tower Junction)  and Bryce Marshall for a day’s fishing on the Rakaia River. 

 Click here to watch Episode One

This was early in December and was one of the most successful days of salmon fishing I’ve witnessed with three fish being caught and released and one additional fish being kept in about an hour and a half.

The first five episodes are designed to help anglers improve their chances of success. 

The episodes will drop each week from now in the Weekly Fishing Report and are: 

  • Episode One – What gear to use
  • Episode Two – Where to fish for salmon
  • Episode Three – When to fish for salmon
  • Episode Four – Checking River conditions
  • Episode Five – How to fill out the harvest card 

You will also be able to check these out on our North Canterbury Fish & Game Facebook page

Keep an eye out in the coming weeks

Going Fishing in Otago?

Otago Fish & Game has joined Central South Island, North Canterbury and the Wellington region, doing weekly fishing reports. 

If head that way for some fishing and want the latest Otago freshwater fishing info at your fingertips, sign up, and every Thursday like this report, we’ll email you the latest fishing conditions, weather and river flow info, and tips for your next fishing mission.   

Click here to subscribe.

Notice board 

Little Rakaia Giant Slalom 

Little Rakia Boating Club is holding their annual Giant Slalom on February 11 in the lagoon; registration closes on February 3. Do not miss out, as entries are limited to 45 Boats, so if you are keen to participate, contact Graeme at 0275772257.  

Rakaia Salmon Fishing Competition  

February 24th, 25th and 26th, 2023.  

The 40th anniversary of the Rakaia competition, the largest freshwater fishing competition in New Zealand, attracts over 700 entrants yearly.  

Rakaia River Promotions (the organisers) will post more details soon but bookmark their webpage to get the latest info.   

The NZ Salmon Anglers Association Waimakariri Salmon Fishing Competition

Saturday 11 March 2023, start time 5 am, finishes at 3 pm

Weigh in station is located at the Waimakariri River mouth and opens at 8 am

Click here for more details.

If you have any recent photos of your fishing exploits or fishing events you want to publicise, send them to northcanterbury@fishandgame.org.nz ; even if they aren’t from our region, I’ll pass them on.  

Tight lines 

Richie Cosgrove, North Canterbury Fish & Game Officer. 





More Posts