Trophies on the cards for capital anglers!

Published: Mon 29 Sep 2014 04:57 PM
Trophies on the cards for capital anglers!
The looming ‘mouse plague’ across parts of New Zealand could see some sizeable trout about in the Wellington Fish & Game region this season, which starts Wednesday, October 1.
This, along with stable winter conditions that have been conducive to trout breeding and conditioning, suggests the 2014-15 season could be shaping up as one of best in years for the lower North Island.
According to DOC, the heaviest beech forest seed-fall in over decade is occurring now across a widespread area of New Zealand causing elevated numbers of rodents.
What this means for anglers is there will be some ‘XOS’ size trout around as they feed readily on mice – large, protein-packed prey items for fish – enabling them to put on weight very quickly.
“We’re not too sure how significant the beech seeding has been in the Tararua, Ruahine and Kaimanawa headwaters,” says Wellington Fish & Game manager Phil Teal, “but if it has been a big event then we’d expect some trophy – 10-pound plus – trout to be around this season.
“The so-called ‘mouse-year’ is legendary in angling circles both internationally and locally but it is often regarded as a South Island phenomenon.
“What many don’t realise is that a good portion of the rivers in the Wellington Fish & Game region flow through beech forest, so if there’s an explosion of rodents then the trout in our waterways will pack on weight very quickly.
“This could well be the season for anglers to bag an elusive trophy trout.”
Mr Teal says capital anglers needn’t head into the backcountry to target a trophy either.
“The readily accessible Hutt River is beech-lined right down to Upper Hutt city. So the trout in this outstanding ‘urban’ fishery could also benefit from the influx of food if the predicted spike in rodent numbers comes to fruition.
“At any rate, there will certainly be plenty of quality fish about: the Hutt has in recent times recorded some of the highest counts of trout in any New Zealand river.”
Mr Teal’s parting advice to anglers this season?
“Just make sure you’ve got some mouse ‘flies’ in your armoury!”

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