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Golden Perch – Macquaria ambigua - 
                                            Yellowbelly

Golden perch -
                                             Yellowbelly - catchingCatching Yellowbelly

Once you stock Yellowbelly fingerlings into your dam you will not see them again. Generally there will be no outward indication of the fish. They are native fish and are very fast and smart. They will not cruise the shallows or swim along the surface like a goldfish will do. No sign of your Yellowbelly is a good thing so do not be worried. If you cannot see them then the birds that will try and eat them will not see them. After 2 years your fish will be getting big enough to start eating and most people would be keen to know how their fish are going. There are a few things you can do to check on your fish.

  • Go lure fishing: Yellowbelly are a predatory fish and will take flies and lures. It's not easy getting them to take a lure as you need to find the right colour for your dam and every dam is different. I can use a dozen different lures and not get a bite, then change onto the dozen and oneth and . . . bang! Every throw is a fish. When you get a good lure for your dam guard it well and don’t lend it to the kids. They are always losing my best lures and then I need to do it all over again to find a replacement.

  • Catching Yellowbelly
  • Go fishing: Just take you esky and a deck chair down to the side of the dam and throw in some fishing lines. Goldens fish well on baits. Light lines and live bait is the best. Garden worms, yabbies and shrimp are my favourites. Generally I use 3 fishing rods, a couple of worms on a hook or a small yabby. Lob them out into the dam and sit back having a quiet beer and sandwich and just wait for the rod to start bending over. Mostly they will hook themselves. Very simple rig, just a No.2 long shank hook. I use long shank hooks as they are easier to get out. My dams I fish are restocked every 2 years so I have both big and small yellowbelly in the dam so can catch a lot of little ones that I want to throw back. Don’t use the red or stainless hooks, just an ordinary bronze coloured hook that will rust back out of the fish easily is best as many a time you will “gut hook” them. A small ball sinker right up to the hook and that’s it.

  • Nets: The best and easiest method is just use a gill net. This is just a length of net 25 metres long on a rope which you suspend in the dam. Fish swim into it and get tangled and you just lift them out. It’s very effective and gives very surprising results. Gill nets are available from Aquablue.

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