Home' Fish and Game : September 2016 Contents HIDDEN REWARDS
ANY TARANAKI RIVERS AND STREAMS ARE
relatively unproductive in that they don’t hold
a high density of trout. This is likely due to their
short, steep and turbulent nature, which combined with
the propensity for young trout to migrate downstream
as they grow causes many juveniles to be lost to sea. In
turn, this lack of recruitment each year in conjunction
with the adverse effects of floods constrains the size of
the adult trout population.
As a consequence, those few juvenile trout that do
remain in the rivers are critically important and when we
catch and then release them because they are too small,
it is imperative that they survive. Similarly, in rivers
which have few but relatively large trout, consider also
releasing these as each adult fish is not easily replaced.
It’s a very common misconception that a fish
will survive if it swims away strongly after release.
Unfortunately this is not necessarily true and in reality
the test is whether it is still alive 48 hours later.
Fundamental to whether they survive this period is
A GREAT EXAMPLE OF WHAT IS ON OFFER FOR ANGLERS PREPARED TO EXPLORE THE MANY TARANAKI RING-PLAIN RIVERS AND STREAMS
S DISCUSSED BELOW, MANY TARANAKI
ring-plain fisheries are characterised by
relatively low numbers of fish that can be
vulnerable to overharvest. In some rivers it may
take several years from when a trout is removed
before another fish appears in the same pool. This
situation is very difficult to manage through harvest
However, in reality, what actually protects these
fisheries is a lack of use and that the few anglers
who do fish them treat each trout with kid gloves.
As a consequence, the Taranaki Fish & Game
Council has adopted a policy of not promoting
low productivity fisheries by name in angling
information. This is, however, a bit of a catch-22 as
by definition a fishery is only a fishery if utilised
by anglers, otherwise it is just a population of fish.
Furthermore, while these rivers may contain
relatively few trout, what fish are there can often
be of large size and highly prized.
The bottom line is that for most anglers who
might venture into these areas, the very low
density of trout soon puts them off and they don’t
come back. However if you are prepared to cover
a lot of water and accept a few blank days in order
to find these special spots then Taranaki has some
exceptional rewards hidden away.
Please treat these fisheries with care though
catch and sound release is imperative and be
very circumspect about advertising your success,
plastering skite photos over Facebook or an
angling forum is the surest way to ensure there is
no fishery remaining next time you visit.
how they are handled during release and in particular
whether they are bleeding from the gills. Numerous
studies highlight that almost all fish bleeding in this way
will die within the next 48 hours, no matter how slight
By necessity, the gills are extremely fragile so as
to facilitate the diffusion of oxygen and any handling,
squeezing or putting fingers near the gills risks fatally
bruising them. Therefor the ideal way to release a fish is
to leave it supported in the water, preferably constrained
in a landing net and to twist the hook out with a pair of
long-nosed pliers without touching the fish itself.
Of course one thing that often makes it much more
difficult to release a trout is if we use a lure equipped
with treble or multiple hooks. Inevitably a second barb
gets caught in the net or the fish itself and we end up
having to wrestle the struggling fish to extricate it, with
all the risk to the trout that comes with this.
In reality, nearly all lures can be run with single
hooks and the hook up rate is as good or better than
with trebles. So, for the sake of the fish you release
and in the long-term interests of your favourite fishery,
consider switching all your lures to just a single hook in
the coming season.
SINGLE INLINE HOOKS ARE AVAILABLE FOR USE WITH DIVING LURES LIKE
RAPALAS WHICH ARE PROVING VERY EFFECTIVE RIGGED THIS WAY
26/07/16 4:19 pm
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