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What a prize .. Cust’s Danny Pye with the heaviest fish landed during the opening of the high country fishing season at the Coleridge lakes. PHOTO: RICHARD COSGROVE/FISH & GAME NZ

By ROBYN BRISTOW

Cust angler Danny Pye had to take a cold dip to snare his impressive catch during the opening of the Canterbury high country fishery last Saturday.

Danny was trolling on Lake Selfe in his kayak when he snared a 3.8kg brown trout near a shingle fan.

After 80 minutes fighting to reel in the fish, which would not come to the surface, he decided to take the plunge to net it.

He was one of more than 200 anglers who enjoyed the opening of the high country season at the Coleridge lakes fishing competition, with some anglers already out on the water a few minutes after midnight to get a prime spot.

Danny’s catch was by far the heaviest of the day.

Danny says he is often up at his favourite lake.
Anglers didn’t need to catch a fish to enter the competition.

They only had to present their licence to go in the prize draw.

There were thousands of dollars of prizes provided by Christchurch Hunting and
Fishing.

As well as recording weight and length, Fish & Game staff removed scales, otoliths and
stomach samples from selected fish for age and diet analysis.

The otolith is an ear bone which records the age and carries a chemical signature of where the fish is from. They can be analysed by Fish & Game to assist in management of the fishery.

North Canterbury Fish & Game chief executive Rasmus Gabrielsson said the fish were in
excellent condition across the different species and there were good numbers.

‘‘It bodes well for the domestic tourism season.

‘‘The high country is part of the uniqueness of the Canterbury fishery.

‘‘Nowhere else in the world do anglers get to fish in such beautiful scenery so close to a
major population centre,’’ he says.

‘‘These lakes are easy to get to and have healthy populations of fish that give anglers the chance to get a meal for the table, with only a day trip from the city.’’