Home' Fish and Game : September 2016 Contents OPENING DAY
ACOMBINATION OF MORE STAFF TIME ON ANG-
ling surveys and a rejuvenated honorary ranger
team are thought to be behind a big increase in the number
of angler contacts made last season. The result was a large
increase in the number of offences detected.
Sixty-four offenders had prosecution action taken
against them, ranging from warnings through to Court
prosecutions. This is well up from the 27 offenders
apprehended the previous season. Despite the alarming
rise, we are still expecting around 95% compliance overall.
One of the disturbing trends last season was the number
of tourists involved in offending. Just under one-third of
all offences were by overseas anglers, who often claimed
to have no knowledge of our licensing regime or fishing
regulations. Some of the fast moving freedom camping
types have been very hard to track down too but with good
information from rangers, and some determination, we are
achieving a 90% completion rate for instant fines issued.
NEW LICENCE CATEGORIES A BIG HIT
THE NEW LOCAL AREA AND LOYAL SENIOR
licences have been a huge hit in Otago. In the first
year, around 1200 Otago anglers made the switch to one
of the new discounted categories, and they couldn’t be
happier. Feedback from new Loyal Senior licence holders
suggested it was actually less about the reduction in fees
that mattered and more about the recognition of their long
licence history which they appreciated.
STAFF RESEARCH PROJECT CELEBRATED
FiSH & GAME’S THREE-YEAR PROJECT INVESTI -
gating juvenile trout survival in Central Otago’s
Lindis River has reached its final milestone. Fish and
Game Officer Morgan Trotter has recently been awarded
a Master of Science (with distinction) for his thesis based
on the research. This important study has highlighted that
juvenile trout suffer much higher mortality rates under
low flows than would be expected naturally. The research
findings played a key part for the Lindis River minimum
flow plan change and are expected to be relevant to further
discussions across the region.
LOCAL ANGLERS AT MANORBURN RESERVOIR ON OPENING DAY
ET IN THE HILLS AT THE SOUTH END OF
Central Otago’s Ida Valley is the Upper
Manorburn Reservoir. This 700ha irrigation
storage dam was completed in 1914 and is
administered by the Ida Valley Irrigation Company.
Brown trout were first released into the Coffer
Dam, behind the main structure in 1913. Since then
rainbow trout have been introduced and today it has
evolved exclusively as a rainbow trout fishery which
is popular with local and visiting anglers alike.
Since 2010, Fish & Game has been collecting
information on angler usage and fish harvest.
Surveys have been conducted during peak use
which is typically on opening day each season.
Rangers interview as many boat and shore-based
anglers as possible. Harvested fish are weighed and
measured and the results are compiled to assess
the fish population structure.
The overall catch rate from the past six seasons
is 0.59 or 1 fish for approximately 1.7 hours
angling which is very good by comparison with
other fisheries in Otago. The 2012 opening was
particularly successful with 40 anglers catching
172 fish, of which 109 were released. A catch rate
of just over 1 fish per hour is the highest recorded
Average annual fish lengths ranged between
403mm and 436mm, while fish weight averaged
between 806 grams and 960g, showing fish size
and fish condition were relatively stable over this
period. Data of the total catch showed that 414 fish
(54%) were harvested and 354 (46%) fish were
released. It appears that the fishery is productive,
in good health and that it can sustain this level of
Trolling and bait fishing have been the most
popular methods recorded but weather played a
key role influencing method use. Windy conditions
often restricted trolling to calmer areas and boat
anglers frequently changed to bait fishing during
their lunch break and on returning to their huts.
Fly and spin anglers were in minority but both
methods were successful when the right conditions
ATHREE-YEARLY REVIEW OF FISHING
regulations involving angler consultation
has just been completed for the Otago Fish and
Game region. Several changes have been made to
the regulations which will come into force for the
new season on October 1. These changes include:
• Lake Mahinerangi will be open all year, now
BY CLIFF HALFORD,
FISH AND GAME OFFICER
offering winter fishing opportunities.
• Leith Stream and tributaries will be closed to
all fishing above the Lindsay Creek confluence,
primarily to protect salmon spawning.
The review also considered changes to daily
bag limits on major lakes including Wanaka and
Wakatipu and on other Otago waters. Decisions
have been deferred for 12 months to allow for
further consultation with Otago anglers and the
issue will be re-considered prior to the 2017-18
All anglers are advised to thoroughly read their
regulation guide which is also available online by
visiting the Fish & Game website.
26/07/16 4:26 pm
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