Toolondo wa­ter de­lights

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News - BY DEAN LAW­SON

Wim­mera an­glers have ap­plauded an in­crease in wa­ter flow to Toolondo Reservoir as they pre­pare for a bumper re­gional spring and sum­mer fish­ing sea­son.

Wim­mera An­glers As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Kelvin Robin­son said 10,000 me­gal­itres flow­ing from Rock­lands Reservoir into the pop­u­lar recre­ation lake was ‘great news’.

“We’re de­lighted with the ex­tra wa­ter. It pro­vides greater se­cu­rity for an­glers, know­ing that one of the best fish­ing lakes in the re­gion will be pro­vid­ing good con­di­tions deep into sum­mer,” he said. “It’s not only good for an­glers, but ev­ery­one who en­joys vis­it­ing the lake.”

Wim­mera An­glers As­so­ci­a­tion rep­re­sents about a dozen clubs across the re­gion and has a long his­tory as a recre­ational fish­ing and tourism ad­vo­cate.

Mr Robin­son said ex­tra wa­ter would add weight to reg­u­lar re­quests for re­leases of tens-of-thou­sands of ju­ve­nile brown and rain­bow trout for the lake, which ul­ti­mately at­tracted an­glers from across Aus­tralia.

“We’re also hop­ing large amounts of preda­tory fish such as trout, while not only pro­vid­ing fan­tas­tic fish­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties, can also help keep the ris­ing num­ber of carp in check,” he said.

Re­search has re­vealed carp num­bers are grow­ing in the wa­ter­way, prompt­ing a sug­ges­tion Toolondo might be an ideal wa­ter­way for an in­tro­duc­tory re­lease of a carp virus.

Mr Robin­son said re­gard­less of the carp, Toolondo was well poised to re­turn to its glory days when it pro­duced tro­phy-size fish­ing of up to and be­yond the three-kilo­gram mark.

“Adding weight to this are moves, if suc­cess­ful, to change catch-size lim­its at the lake to pro­mote it as a tro­phy wa­ter,” he said.

Gwmwa­ter wa­ter re­sources man­ager Kym Wil­son con­firmed catch­ment in­flow had prompted a trans­fer of an ex­tra 5000 me­gal­itres from Rock­lands to Toolondo as part of man­age­ment op­er­a­tions.

He said the de­ci­sion, which fol­lowed a pre­vi­ous 5000-me­gal­itre flow, was about cre­at­ing op­ti­mum evap­o­ra­tion ef­fi­ciency be­tween the reser­voirs. “I don’t fore­see an in­crease from the 10,000 me­gal­itres but noth­ing is im­pos­si­ble,” he said.

“Things have con­tin­ued to im­prove in re­gards to in­flow in the past cou­ple of weeks. In the week up to last Wed­nes­day we had 18,000 me­gal­itres of in­flow across the sys­tem, which was the largest weekly in­crease this sea­son.

“From a wa­ter-re­sources per­spec­tive we’re in a great po­si­tion.

“Af­ter the Rock­lands trans­fer we ex­pect Toolondo to be at about half of its max­i­mum op­er­at­ing level, which means it will be hold­ing about 23,000 me­gal­itres.”

Mr Wil­son said all wa­ter trans­ferred from Rock­lands to Toolondo passed through a fine fil­ter de­signed to screen out carp eggs as well as fish.

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