It’s the start of the whitebait season here in Southland New Zealand. Almost as religious as the opening of the Game Bird Season the Whitebaiting community will be geared up and ready to intercept their chosen quarry as they move into the river systems to spawn. As the small fish move into the estuary systems it’s not only the Whitebaiters that these tiny creatures have to be aware of, this mass movement of bait is a big meal ticket for trout. For the avid fly fisher this presents an opportunity to follow and target their feeding behavior. This is a very specific, highly visual type of fly fishing and a must for anyone that hasn’t experienced it yet. Leave your usual nymph and dry’s at home, this requires a box full of protein fueled imitations that ‘match the hatch’ of these slender morsels.
Matauka Ghosts - Skeletal Smelt - Fresh Candy are all great patterns
I think technique and understanding fish movements is more of a factor than what you tie on the end of your tippet to improving your success rate. General knowledge of a chosen destination is key to finding when/where the best place and times will be. This is a fast paced environment so your ability to present a fly is also a benefit, attention to accuracy and quick delivery thru excellent line management is the golden nugget for cheesy instagram boasting potential.
This is winter fishing at it’s best the Unofficial Start to the season for me. Check out the vid below for some Pre Frothing action and let me know if your interested in this unique style of fishing.
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