Fishing in Loddon Valley
Published on 29 January 2016
Test your skills against some of this country’s best known fish species.
That’s the challenge laid down by Loddon Shire, whose varied waterways are home to redfin, Murray cod, golden perch and silver perch.
The Loddon, north-central Victoria’s largest river, begins its journey in the Great Dividing Range, near Trentham.
It flows 392km northwards through Newstead, Bridgewater, Serpentine, Boort and Kerang, before joining the Murray River between Barham and Swan Hill.
Along the way, it runs through the Cairn Curran and Laanecoorie Reservoirs and several weirs.
Council has made fishing facilities a priority, providing boat ramps, platforms and riverside reserves designed to encourage anglers of all ages to relax by the water and try their luck.
At Bridgewater, for example, a new pier is accessed by a marked walking track, its popularity boosted by the availability of riverside accommodation and supplies from the nearby town.
On the Serpentine Creek at Durham Ox, the Loddon Vale Landcare Fishing Platform was officially opened in 2012 by Peter Walsh, MP, who promptly cast a line into the creek to christen the new facility.
Local anglers confirm a trip to the river or one of the district’s other waterways can definitely be worthwhile.
Inglewood enthusiast Brian Rodwell is one.
“The Loddon River fishes pretty well for cod and yellowbelly, especially in spring and summer when the water’s warmer,” Mr Rodwell said.
“When they let in water from higher up at Cairn Curran and Laanecoorie, the fishing goes off a little bit because of the cold water coming through, but it comes good again after a while.
“Lures work really well, plus the normal things like worms and bardi grubs.”
Past-president of the Boort Angling Club Ron Hird said he’d often fished the Loddon at Bridgewater and “done alright on lures”.
“I’ve taken mostly cod and yellowbelly there and the same at Laanecoorie Weir,” Mr Hird said.
“I also do Newbridge once a year just to see what’s going on and I know blokes from the Maryborough and Bendigo Angling Clubs come over this way regularly.
“Up here, our club’s family carp-catching competition every October is our biggest event – we had around 200 people here this year.”
Fisheries Victoria has advised that this summer has seen around 165,000 native fish stocked into lakes and rivers in Loddon Shire.
Golden perch have been released in the Loddon River (80,000), Laanecoorie Weir (10,000) and Little Lake Boort (5,000), while Murray cod fingerlings have gone into the Loddon (50,000) and Laanecoorie Weir (20,000).
Newcomers to the sport are advised to look through The Victorian Recreational Fishing Guide 2016 for guidance on size and bag limits.
The guide is available in hard copy, free of charge, from most tackle shops that sell recreational fishing licences or by calling the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources on 136 186