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Anglers urged to seize opportunity

Fish & Game Officer Matt Osborne with a brown trout for the Ngongotaha Stream. Supplied image.

Fish & Game are urging anglers to make the most of the opening date for upper stream sections in the region and excellent fishing conditions.

The upper sections of the Ngongotaha, Waiteti and Utuhina Streams at Rotorua and the Hopuruahine and Mokau Streams at Waikaremoana all open to fishing on Sunday 1 December. Note; that section of the Utuhina Stream above Pukehangi Road is closed to fishing at all times.

The Lake Rotorua tributary streams are currently being inundated with large runs of impressive brown trout and anglers are expected to be out in force come Sunday. Fish & Game’s Matt Osborne said the recent hot weather has seen brown trout running up the streams to find cool water, which is great news for fishers. When Lake Rotorua exceeds 19 degrees C, the brown trout, in particular, become uncomfortable and head into the tributary streams seeking relief in the cool water.

“We’ve seen fish around 4kg and several almost touching 5kg” Mr Osborne said. A trout exceeding 4.54kg, or 10 imperial pounds, is considered by anglers to be a trophy. About 100 fish per night have been running up the Ngongotaha providing opportunities for anglers both at the stream mouth and lower section of the stream. Fishing at the Ngongotaha Stream mouth has been red hot especially at the change of light and after dark. Large groups of smelt off the river mouth are enticing the fish to feed up.

Boat based anglers needn’t feel left out either as improving weather systems are making it a great time to get out on the lakes and into the action. Mr Osborne commented that “the windy weather that has plagued us since opening is finally lifting and conditions will be much more pleasant to take the family out fishing. Trout are targeting smelt around the edges of Rotoiti and Tarawera and fish condition (fatness), especially the younger maiden fish, has been outstanding.”

Remember, when moving between waterways it is imperative to Check, Clean and Dry your equipment and boats as we don’t want catfish and other pests spread through our waterways. Regarding boats, ensure it is clean before launching (no organisms on the boat or trailer) and after your trip when back on the ramp, drop the motor to drain it of water, drain the bilge, any water ballast, and check the trailer and boat for any weed fragments. Let the boat and trailer dry thoroughly before using on another lake.

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