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Popular Bendigo places are productive
  |  First Published: April 2017



The fishing around the Bendigo area continues to be very productive. We’re lucky, because the productivity in the fishing is currently good at all of the popular destinations around Bendigo. It’s the most productive I have seen it in over a decade. The good news is that the productivity in the fishing should stay high for at least another couple of months.

LAKE EPPALOCK

The fishing in Lake Eppalock continues to be good. As always, it is producing mixed results for anglers. Anglers with reduced knowledge of the lake are often returning home with their tail between their legs after a day of low catch rates. On the other hand, anglers with very good knowledge of the lake are experiencing some very high catch rates of redfin.

For those anglers who are struggling to catch some redfin, hopefully a few pointers in this report will see you landing more fish. The first thing to note with the redfin is that they are moving around a lot. If you find a school at a certain location, there is a good chance they won’t be there the next time you try that location. Anglers need to be prepared to move around a lot in order to locate a larger school of redfin.

On a recent trip to Lake Eppalock I moved over 30 times before I found a big concentration of redfin. Once the school was located it was nearly a fish every cast. The best concentrations of redfin are currently being found in a depth range between 5-10m of water. Find the bait, find the fish.

There are large schools of juvenile redfin in the lake at the moment. These bait schools are the main source of food for the larger redfin. If you are fishing in an area and you are not seeing any baitfish, move to another area where the baitfish are more concentrated and you will catch more fish. If you don’t know where a concentration of fish is holding, troll around until you catch fish. My most productive trolling option at the moment is the Custom Crafted Basshunter in the Extra Deep model.

You can continue trolling up and down in the same area or change tactics and start casting. Good casting options have been soft plastics, blades and lipless crankbaits in quieter models. Some good numbers of redfin are also being caught by anglers jigging with ice jigs and soft plastic lures. The productivity in the golden perch fishing has only been average and there has only been the occasional Murray cod being caught. The majority of anglers are concentrating their fishing efforts on targeting redfin.

CAMPASPE RIVER

Water clarity is currently good at most locations along the Campaspe River. The water clarity is only average at Rochester, but should slowly continue to improve. The fishing has been good in the Campaspe River over recent weeks. Golden perch are making up the majority of anglers’ catch rates. Small numbers of Murray cod are also being caught and small numbers of redfin are being caught in some locations.

The majority of golden perch reported are measuring 30-40cm. There are currently more small golden perch in the Campaspe River than I have seen for a long time. This is a great sign for angling opportunities in the future.

The most productive lures for the golden perch have been a combination of lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits. While the numbers of Murray cod being caught have been lower than the golden perch, the condition on the majority of fish has been excellent. They are very fat and will be experiencing some good growth rates this season.

CAIRN CURRAN

Redfin are making up the majority of captures at Cairn Curran as well. If you do plan a trip to this location, don’t be put off by the water clarity. The water clarity is poor, but the productivity in the fishing is still good. The other positive for this location has been the reduced amount of fishing pressure compared to Lake Eppalock. Most redfin at Cairn Curran are being caught in a lot shallower water than at Lake Eppalock.

The best concentrations of redfin are being found in 2-5m of water. Again, trolling can be a good tactic. If you find a good concentration of fish, casting soft plastics has also been productive. The numbers of golden perch and Murray cod being caught at Cairn Curran has been low. The majority of the native fish that have been caught have been around rocky shoreline and around the edges of standing timber.

LODDON RIVER

The fishing in the Loddon River has been very good. Some very good numbers of golden perch are currently being caught by anglers. The golden perch are measuring between 30-42cm. Catch rates have been excellent with many anglers landing over ten native fish in a day at the present time.

The majority of golden perch are being caught by anglers casting lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits. The most productive times have been the first and last two hours of daylight. The productivity of the fishing during the middle of the day has been slow on most days.

There continue to be good numbers of Murray cod. Most of these have been 45-55cm. The occasional large Murray cod has also been landed by anglers. The majority of Murray cod have been caught by anglers casting spinnerbaits. Small numbers are also being caught by anglers fishing with surface lures and swimbaits.

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