Nearly time to get fishing.
The new season is approaching fast, and in less than two weeks, the Waitaki and Kakanui rivers and the Twizel canals will be lined with keen anglers looking to snag a good catch.
Oamaru Sports And Outdoors owner Richard Hill is one local angler who believes the season will be a success.
“The conditions of the rivers look good,” he said.
“We’ve got whitebait in the river now, which is good.”
In his 30 years of working at the Oamaru shop, Mr Hill said he had not heard of a fishing season as good as the last one.
“Fish seem to have adapted to didymo in the river and their feeding habits have changed.”
The only thing people needed to be mindful of was the low level of salmon the district was facing, he said.
Hunting & Fishing North Otago owner David Quinn had similar thoughts about the season.
He believed there was a plentiful supply of fish waiting to be caught in the Waitaki River.
“The Waitaki is actually a very under-estimated river,” Mr Quinn said.
“There’s good fish in them – there always has been.
“All the keen fishermen are psyched up and ready to go.”
Central South Island Fish and Game officer Rhys Adams said Fish and Game had tagged hundreds of brown and rainbow trout in the lower Waitaki River fishery.
The tagging project utilised the Waitaki voluntary salmon hatchery’s fish trap on the Hakataramea River to capture, tag and release trout running from the Waitaki River up the Hakataramea River on their annual spawning run.
Hatchery volunteers had also helped to maintain the trap and check on fish numbers.
Mr Adams asked anyone who found tagged trout in the Waitaki River to report them to Fish and Game.
The fishing season will officially start on October 1.