No apologies for kicking off the July issue of Reel Life with a matter as drab as government policy – the proposed review of the RMA has potential to seriously impact the future of freshwater angling in New Zealand.
For those of you concerned about water quality decline and Fish & Game being able to continue to advocate for freshwater habitat protection, there's a must-read article from chief executive Bryce Johnson here which details the threat behind the Government' s policy review.
Fish & Game will vigorously oppose any plan to remove reference to the protection of trout and salmon habitat from the RMA.
On another important matter, we're making a push to raise awareness of Water Conservation Orders (WCOs) – the highest level of protection that can be afforded to any water body.
There are 15 WCOs across the country, many of which safeguard some of our most outstanding fisheries, and anglers have directly contributed to protecting these through their licence fees.
We encourage you to find out more here and really support your local WCO river or lake. Indeed, why not make it a personal goal to complete a WCO Angling Grand Slam – catch a fish in each of the 15 protected waterways! Now there's a challenge!
Until next issue - Tight Lines!
P.S - This month's cover image is from visiting Australian angler Peter Dawson who took this fantastic shot of Lake Rotoiti on a frosty May morning.
P.P.S - If you think you've got a freshwater fishing image worthy of featuring on our 'cover', email it to Hamish Carnachan for consideration.
This Month's Regional News Click on the region to read.
Congratulations to Kevin Neil from Auckland as he has been randomly drawn to receive the signed copy of the international best-seller 'The Trout Diaries, A Year of Fly Fishing in New Zealand' by Derek Grzelewski. Well done Kevin and thanks to everyone who entered, we had a huge response and keep an eye out for future competitions brought to you by Reel Life!
Joan Ryder says there's great fishing to be had now that access permits are available for Kaingaroa Forest. Find out more
Chris Dore offers tips on using the right line to ensure your fly is getting down to the fish. Find out more
Creasy's Column - By Hugh Creasy
Nature has provided.
Midges dance in the cold air, their rise and fall reflects the heartbeat of the river, and in mid-winter they are the only sign of life. Grey water, grey skies, funereal in mourning for a summer long departed. But the midges dance.
And under the water, a blood-red clump of bloodworms twists in the pool, progeny of the family Chironomus. Haemoglobin runs through them, the same that colours our blood. They make a rich diet when eaten in quantity. The pool is really a backwater, slow currents create a ripple on the sandy bottom, and where the main river runs turbid, the pool is clear. There are trout here, tiny fish hatched a week or so ago and washed into the pool by a flood that swamped the redds on the main river.
These are hatchlings, not yet parred, almost invisible, egg sac only recently absorbed. The blood worms are almost as long as they are. The fish shoal and move in untidy unison then feed on invisible prey, tiny mouths gaping and grasping, blood-red gills opening and closing. They live on the very edge of survivability. They should be swimming among the cobbles of the main river, protected in fast water, and supported by the peculiarities of hydrology that enable fragile life. But the flood deposited them in the pool and they cluster on the sandy bottom, a treat for any passing predator.Creasy's Column continues here...