Weekly Fishing report for the North Canterbury Region Friday 27th September 2019

  • North Canterbury
  • 26/09/2019
  • Richie Cosgrove

Weekly Fishing report for the North Canterbury Region Friday 27th September 2019

Hello and welcome to the first North Canterbury region fishing report for the 2019/20 fishing season. 

Tuesday is opening day this year and the forecast looks very average. 

Monday is bringing Nor-West rain to the main divide while Tuesday has a southerly change bring rain to the plains and snow in the foothills and high-country. 

Right: The lower Poulter, a fantastic North Canterbury fishery.

Between now and then we are locked into a south west pattern which brings unpredictable weather. 

It is always hard to predict what is going to happen this far out, but at this stage it is not looking fine and sunny.

At the moment the Rakaia is looking low and clear. 

The Hurunui, Waiau and Waimakariri have received more rain and are running discoloured.

Anglers will need to check flows on the ECan website Tuesday morning due to the possible rain in the headwaters Monday night. 

Remember there is a delay for dirty water reaching the lower reaches so be careful when parking vehicles in the middle of riverbeds.

Most high-country lakes will be closed on Tuesday, with the exception of Loch Katrine and Sumner which stay open all year round. 

Lake Pearson, Selfe and Taylor will be open this weekend.

Foot hill streams have an ideal flow at the time of writing and should be clear and fishable by Tuesday. 

Currently the Ashley is running at eight cumecs which is an ideal flow for fishing the lower and mid reaches. 

Ellesmere tributaries have clear high flows this year which makes them a great option. 

The Selwyn at Coe’s Ford is flowing over two cumecs. 

There does seem to be more fish in the lower Selwyn this year so that could be well worth a look. 

There was a good opening for Lake Ellesmere in late winter which would have encouraged fish migration. 

There is probably going to be a lake opening soon when conditions allow the cutting. 

This will further enhance the Ellesmere fishery and is good timing for the start of the season.

Submission on NPS Freshwater & Stock exclusion rules

The government is asking for feedback on their new freshwater proposals.

This is the best opportunity we have had to see new rules put in place to clean up our waterways. 

Submitting is easy, just email your comments to consultation.freshwater@mfe.govt.nz under the heading: “Submission on Essential Freshwater Package.” Get it in by 5pm on 17th October 2019.

Here are some of the things we will be submitting on if you need some ideas:

  • Water first

We support the order of priorities as they are in the NPS; that the health of waterways should be put ahead of the human use of water 

  • Good stock exclusion

We support the plan to require 5m fence setbacks on streams wider than 1 m, but also seek 3 m setbacks on smaller streams. We don’t support the exemption that allows those with current setback of >2 m to keep them that way till 2035. In its place we encourage a more rapid and ambitious transition to improved setbacks and stock exclusion rules.   

  • Protect the pristine high country waterways

We want to see a policy put in place that immediately restricts the intensification of the high country valley flats and river terraces to protect the remaining high quality waterways and wetlands. 

  • Stop wetland destruction

We support the policies that give better protection to wetlands and stop further degradation. 

  • Make Farm Environment Plans enforceable

We believe every commercial farm should have a Farm Environment Plan, that and these should be of a high standard and enforceable, rather than self regulated.

  • Stop fish getting lost to irrigation takes

All irrigation takes should have efficient fish screens that prevent all fish from entering the intake and return then fish back to the river unharmed. 

  • Bottom lines for nitrogen and phosphorus

We support the proposed bottom lines for nitrogen and phosphorus in rivers to support ecosystem health

  • Protect trout and salmon

The NPS needs to make more specific recognition of trout and salmon to ensure this valuable recreational resource is properly provided for. 

  • Make sure the new rules are delivered on

Finally, we believe a dedicated agency should be set up to make sure regional councils and other agencies deliver on their obligations to protect and clean up waterways.

All the best for opening day

Tony Hawker

Fish and Game Officer

North Canterbury Fish and Game Council

More Posts