How to Catch Murray Cod: Best Anglers Guide in 2023
Hey there, fellow fishing enthusiasts! If you’ve found your way to this blog, there’s a good chance you’re as passionate about angling as I am. Today, we’re going to dive into the world of the legendary Murray Cod – Australia’s largest freshwater fish and an angler’s dream catch. With their impressive size, hard-fighting nature, and distinct appearance, it’s no wonder that landing one of these beauties is a badge of honour among fishermen.
In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about catching Murray Cod, including the legal size and catch limit in NSW, their eating quality, where to find them, the best fishing spots in Sydney, and the best season to catch them. We’ll also delve into the best gear, rigs, baits, and lures you need to increase your chances of reeling in a big one. So, whether you’re a beginner or an experienced angler, read on to learn how to catch Murray Cod like a pro!
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #1
Murray Cod Cool Facts
Here are some of the facts about Muray Cod.
Murray Cod, also known as Maccullochella Peelii, belongs to the Percichthyidae family of freshwater fish. It’s a large, predatory species that can grow up to 1.8 meters in length and weigh over 100 kilograms.
Murray Cod has a distinctive appearance with a broad, flattened head, a thick body, and a large mouth. It has a dark olive-green colour on its back, fading to a pale green or cream colour on its belly. The Murray Cod has tough and leathery skin, and its scales are almost invisible.
Murray Cod is a freshwater fish found in southeastern Australia’s rivers, creeks, and lakes. It prefers to live in still or slow-moving water with plenty of cover and structure, such as fallen trees, rocks, and submerged logs.
The Murray Cod is native to the Murray-Darling Basin, which covers an area of over 1 million square kilometres in southeastern Australia. This species can also be found in other freshwater systems, including the Murrumbidgee, Lachlan, and Macquarie Rivers.
Murray Cod is a carnivorous fish that feeds on a variety of prey, including fish, crayfish, frogs, and even small mammals. Juveniles primarily feed on aquatic insects and small fish, while adults feed on larger fish and other aquatic animals.
Now that we’ve covered the cool facts about Murray Cod, let’s move on to the legal size and catch limit in NSW.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #2
Murray Cod Legal Size & Catch Limit in Sydney NSW
Before you head out to catch Murray Cod, it’s important to know the legal size and catch limit set by the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries. These regulations are in place to ensure the fishery’s sustainable management and protect the Murray Cod population.
The minimum legal size for Murray Cod in NSW is between 55 -75 centimetres, measured from the snout’s tip to the tail’s end. This means that any Murray Cod caught that is below or over this size must be immediately released back into the water unharmed.
The catch limit for Murray Cod in NSW varies depending on where you’re fishing. In general, the statewide total allowable catch limit for Murray Cod is 4000 kilograms per year, with a daily bag limit of 2 fish per person and a possession limit of 4 fish per person.
It’s important to note that these regulations can change over time, so it’s always a good idea to check the NSW Department of Primary Industries website for the most up-to-date information before you head out fishing. Now that we’ve covered the legal size and catch limit let’s move on to the next topic – the eating quality of Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #3
What’s The Eating Quality of Murray Cod?
Murray Cod is a prized catch and a delicious treat for seafood lovers. Let’s explore the taste, best cooking methods, and health benefits that come with this fabulous freshwater fish.
Taste and Flavor:
Murray Cod boasts a firm, white flesh with a delicate and mild flavour that is universally appealing. It’s not overly fishy, which makes it a hit even among those who aren’t usually fond of seafood. The tender and flaky texture ensure a satisfying and enjoyable dining experience.
Best Cooking Methods:
Murray Cod’s versatility in the kitchen is one of its strong suits. You can grill, pan-fry, oven-bake, or steam this tasty fish without compromising its flavour. Popular recipes include beer-battered Murray Cod, Murray Cod fillets with lemon and herb crust, or a simple pan-fried version with garlic and butter. Whichever method you choose, be careful not to overcook the fish, as it can become dry.
Murray Cod is a treat for your taste buds and a nutritious option for a healthy diet. It is low in calories and fat, making it a perfect choice for those watching their waistlines. This fish is also packed with high-quality protein and contains essential omega-3 fatty acids, which can help lower the risk of heart disease, support brain health, and reduce inflammation. Including Murray Cod in your meals is a tasty way to maintain a well-rounded and nutritious diet.
Now that we’ve covered the eating quality of Murray Cod let’s move on to the next topic – how to catch land-based Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #4
How To Catch Land-Based Murray Cod
Murray Cod can be caught from the bank or shoreline using a variety of techniques. Here are some tips and techniques to help you catch Murray Cod from the land:
1. Find the Right Spot
Murray Cod are known to inhabit freshwater rivers, creeks, and impoundments. Look for areas that provide cover, such as logs, snags, and weed beds. Murray Cod are likely to hide and ambush their prey in these places.
2. Choose the Right Gear
When targeting Murray Cod from the land, choosing the right gear is important. A heavy-duty rod with fast action is recommended, as Murray Cod is a strong and hard-fighting fish. A good quality reel with a high line capacity is also important, as Murray Cod can grow quite large.
3. Use the Right Lure
Murray Cod can be caught using a variety of lures, including hard-bodied lures, soft plastics, and spinnerbaits. The key is to choose a lure that matches the size and colour of the natural baitfish in the area. It’s also important to vary your retrieve speed and pattern until you find what the Murray Cod are responding to.
4. Use the Right Bait
Murray Cod can also be caught using bait such as live yabbies, worms, and shrimp. It’s important to use a heavy sinker to keep the bait on the bottom where Murray Cod are most likely to be found.
5. Be Patient
Fishing for Murray Cod from the land requires patience and persistence. Don’t be afraid to move around and try different spots until you find where the Murray Cod are feeding. Keep in mind that Murray Cod are known to be most active during dawn and dusk, so these are often the best times to fish.
With these tips and techniques, you’ll be well on your way to catching Murray Cod from the land. Now, let’s move on to the next topic – where to find Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #5
Where Are Murray Cod Commonly Found?
Finding the right spot to fish for Murray Cod is essential for a successful catch. Murray Cod can be found in freshwater rivers, creeks, and impoundments throughout Australia, but some areas are more likely to hold Murray Cod than others.
Importance of Finding the Right Spot
Murray Cod are predatory fish that like to hide and ambush their prey. This means they are often found in areas that provide cover, such as logs, snags, and weed beds. It’s important to look for these areas when fishing for Murray Cod from the land or from a boat.
Best Locations or Environment Types
Murray Cod prefer slow-moving water with plenty of cover and structure. This can include rocky outcrops, submerged logs, and weed beds. They also like deep pools and areas with a lot of underwater structures. Look for areas with a mix of deep and shallow water and plenty of structure for the Murray Cod to hide in.
Best Places to Find Murray Cod
Some of the best places to find Murray Cod include the Murray and Murrumbidgee Rivers and the Goulburn and Darling Rivers. Other popular fishing spots for Murray Cod include Lake Mulwala, Burrinjuck Dam, and Copeton Dam. When looking for a good spot to fish for Murray Cod, it’s important to research the area and speak with local fishermen for advice.
With the right techniques and knowledge of where to find Murray Cod, you’ll be well on your way to a successful fishing trip.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #6
What’s The Best Season To Catch Murray Cod in Australia?
Murray Cod can be caught year-round in Australia, but some seasons are better than others. The best time to catch Murray Cod is during the warmer months of the year, from October to March. During this time, Murray Cod are more active and are more likely to take your bait.
Best Times of Day
Early morning and late afternoon are the best times of the day to target Murray Cod. This is when the water temperature is optimal and the fish are most active.
Murray Cod are ambush predators, so look for areas with plenty of cover, such as snags, logs, and overhanging trees.
The best tide to fish for Murray Cod is during the run-out tide. As the tide goes out, baitfish and other food sources get swept out with it, which attracts Murray Cod. Look for areas where the current flows into a deeper hole or channel, as this is where Murray Cod will be waiting to ambush its prey.
Keeping these tips in mind and targeting the right areas will increase your chances of landing a trophy Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #7
What’s The Best Rod To Catch Murray Cod?
When deciding on the best rod to catch a Muray Cod, the following factors need to be considered.
When it comes to catching a Murray Cod, a rod length between 6-7 feet is recommended for land-based fishing. A longer rod will give you more casting distance but may be difficult to handle when you need to control a large fish.
Rod’s actions and power
The action and power of the rod refer to how much the rod bends and how much force is required to bend it. Murray Cod is a strong and powerful fish, so a rod with medium to heavy power and fast to extra-fast action is ideal.
The rod rating is another important factor to consider. A rod with a 6-10kg line rating is perfect for catching a fully-grown Murray Cod.
Some of the recommended rods for Murray Cod include;
- Shimano Stimula Rod
- Penn Battalion Inshore Spinning Rod
- Abu Garcia Veritas Casting Rod
- Daiwa Saltist Inshore Spinning Rod
These rods have a great combination of action, power, and rod rating and are well-suited for Murray Cod fishing.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #8
What’s The Best Reel To Catch Murray Cod?
When choosing a reel for Murray Cod fishing, there are a few things you need to consider. Firstly, you want to make sure that the reel has a high line capacity, as Murray Cod can grow to be quite large. Secondly, you want to make sure that the reel is durable and can handle the strain of fighting a big fish. Finally, you want to make sure that the reel has a good drag system that allows you to control the fish easily.
Here are some of our recommended reels for Murray Cod fishing:
- Shimano Stradic – This reel is lightweight yet durable, making it the perfect choice for Murray Cod fishing. It also has a strong drag system that can handle even the biggest fish.
- Penn Slammer III – This reel is known for its durability and toughness. It has a high line capacity and a smooth drag system that allows you to control the fish easily.
- Daiwa Saltist Back Bay LT – This reel is designed specifically for inshore fishing and is perfect for catching Murray Cod from the shore. It has a lightweight design and a powerful drag system that can handle even the strongest fish.
- Okuma Cedros CJ-80S – This reel is another great option for Murray Cod fishing. It has a large line capacity and a smooth drag system, allowing you to easily control the fish. It’s also very affordable, making it a great choice for beginners.
Remember, when choosing a reel for Murray Cod fishing, it’s important to choose one that is durable, has a high line capacity, and has a good drag system.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #9
What’s The Best Line To Catch Murray Cod?
Monofilament is a single strand of nylon or other polymers, which gives it great strength and flexibility. It is also highly resistant to abrasion, which is important when fishing in areas with rocks or other rough surfaces.
Here are some recommended mono lines for Murray cod fishing:
- Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line
- Stren High Impact Monofilament Fishing Line
- KastKing World’s Premium Monofilament Fishing Line
- Berkley Trilene XL Smooth Casting Monofilament Fishing Line
The Fluorocarbon line is another popular type of fishing line used for Murray cod. Fluorocarbon is made of a dense and highly refractive material, which makes it nearly invisible underwater. This property makes fluorocarbon an ideal choice for fishing in clear water, where fish may be more easily spooked by a visible line. Additionally, fluorocarbon has low stretch and is highly abrasion-resistant, making it a great choice for Murray-cod fishing.
Here are some recommended fluorocarbon lines for Murray cod fishing:
- Seaguar Blue Label Fluorocarbon line
- Seaguar Red Label Fluorocarbon Fishing Line
- Berkley Vanish Fluorocarbon Fishing Line
- Yo-Zuri Fluorocarbon Leader Line
Braid line is a strong and versatile fishing line that is becoming increasingly popular for Murray cod fishing. Braid is made of multiple strands of woven fibres, which gives it great strength and sensitivity. It is also highly visible and has low stretch, which makes it ideal for fishing in deeper water, where you need to feel the bites quickly and set the hook fast. Additionally, the braid has a thin diameter, which means you can fit more lines on your reel and cast farther.
Here are some recommended braid lines for Murray cod fishing:
- Daiwa J-Braid 300M 8-Strands Braided Fishing Line
- KastKing SuperPower Braided Fishing Line
- SpiderWire Stealth Superline
- Seaknight W8 8-Stranded fishing line
Overall, the best fishing line for Murray Cod will depend on personal preference and fishing conditions.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Tip #10
What’s The Best Rig To Catch Murray Cod?
A well-designed rig can increase the chances of catching fish by presenting the bait or lure in a way that is attractive to the fish. Below are some of the best rigs to catch a Murray Cod.
This rig is ideal for targeting Murray Cod in deeper waters. It features a sinker at the bottom and two dropper loops with hooks attached to the main line. The hooks should be spaced about 30-40cm apart to increase the chances of catching a fish.
How to make a paternoster Rig
- Tie a swivel to the end of your main line
- Attach the length of the leader line to the other end of the swivel.
- Tie a dropper loop in the leader line about 30-40cm above the sinker, then tie another dropper loop about 30cm above the first one.
- Attach hooks to each dropper loop, and you’re ready to fish.
This rig is ideal for targeting Murray Cod in shallow waters near cover like weed beds and fallen trees. It features a spinner bait lure that creates vibration and flash to attract fish and a weedless hook that allows you to fish in areas with a snaggy cover.
How to make a spinnerbait Rig
- Tie a swivel to the end of your main line
- Attach the length of the leader line to the other end of the swivel.
- Tie a weedless hook to the end of the leader line
- Attach the spinner bait to the hook using a split ring.
- Cast the rig near the cover and retrieve it slowly to attract Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod –Tip #11
What Are The Best Baits to Catch Murray Cod?
When it comes to catching Murray cod, selecting the right bait is crucial. The best baits for Murray cod are those that mimic the fish’s natural prey and can attract their attention. Live baits are generally considered the best.
When selecting a bait for Murray cod fishing, it’s important to choose a bait that matches the size and weight of your hook and rig. Additionally, consider the location and conditions of the water you’ll be fishing in, as this can impact the effectiveness of different baits.
Here are some of the best baits to catch Murray cod:
- Yabbies: These freshwater crustaceans are a favourite food of Murray cod and are readily available in many rivers and lakes.
- Shrimp: Another popular live bait for Murray cod, shrimp can be fished on their own or used in conjunction with other baits.
- Worms: Worms are a versatile and effective bait for Murray cod, especially when fished in areas with rocky or weedy bottoms.
- Chicken liver: Murray cod are attracted to the scent of chicken liver and will often strike at this bait when other options fail.
Using the right natural bait can greatly increase your chances of catching Murray Cod. However, if natural bait isn’t available or you prefer using lures, the next heading will discuss some of the best lures to use when targeting Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod –Tip #12
What Are The Best Lures To Catch Murray Cod?
When selecting a lure for Murray cod fishing, it’s important to choose a lure that matches the size and weight of your rod and line. Additionally, consider the location and conditions of the water you’ll be fishing in, as this can impact the effectiveness of different lures. The best lures for Murray cod are those that mimic the fish’s natural prey, are durable, and can withstand the fish’s powerful bite.
When it comes to targeting Murray Cod, lures can be just as effective as natural baits. Here are some of the best lures to use when targeting Murray Cod:
Soft Plastic Lures:
Soft plastic lures are a popular choice for targeting Murray Cod. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but the most effective ones are large, curly-tailed grubs or paddle-tail swimbaits. These lures can be rigged on a weighted jig head and fished like natural baits. They can also be rigged weedless and fished in heavy cover where Murray Cod like to hide.
Here are our recommended soft plastic lures for Murray Cod:
- Jig Head Soft Plastic Lures
- Berkley Gulp! Alive! Swimming Mullet 12.5 OZ Bucket, 4-Inch
- Berkley PowerBait MaxScent
- Berkley Gulp! Grubs
- Z-Man 2.5-inch GrubZ Soft Bait
- Z-MAN MinnowZ 3-inch Soft Plastic Paddle Tail Swimbait
- Keitech Easy Shiner Swimbait
Hard Body Lures:
Hard body lures are another popular choice for targeting Murray Cod. They come in a variety of styles, including bibbed and bibless lures. The most effective hard body lures for Murray Cod are those with a deep diving lip or can dive to depths of 10-20 feet. These lures can be retrieved slowly and erratically to mimic the movement of a wounded baitfish.
Here are our recommended hard body lures for Murray Cod:
- Rapala X-Rap Jerkbait XR10 Fishing Lure
- Rapala X-Rap Haku Fishing Lure
- Rapala Clackin’ Minnow 09 Fishing Lure, 3.5-Inch
- Rapala X-Rap Jointed Shad 13 Fishing Lures
- Jackall TN 50 HL Black & Gold
Surface lures are an exciting way to target Murray Cod. These lures are designed to be fished on the surface and create a commotion that can attract the attention of Murray Cod. Poppers, walkers, and fizzers are all effective types of surface lures for Murray Cod. They can be retrieved with a slow, steady motion or with sharp, jerky movements to create a commotion that will attract Murray Cod from a distance.
Here are our recommended surface lures for Murray Cod:
- Arbogast Jitterbug Topwater Fishing Lure
- Arbogast Jointed Jitterbug 2.0 Topwater Fishing Lure
- Topwater Frog Lure Soft Swimbait Lures
- Booyah Toad Runner Topwater Fishing Lure
Metal lures are another effective way to target Murray Cod. These lures are designed to mimic the flash and movement of small baitfish. Blade lures, spinnerbaits, and vibes are all effective types of metal lures for Murray Cod. They can be retrieved at various speeds and depths to find the most productive presentation.
Here are our recommended metal lures for Murray Cod:
- Halco Twisty Chrome Jigs
- Panther Martin Best of The West Spinnerbait Kit
- Yakima Bait: Wordens Original Rooster Tail
- TRUSCEND Multi-Jointed Slow Sinking Swimbaits
- Goture Spinner Baits Kit
Remember, lure selection is just one part of the equation. Experimenting with different retrieves and techniques will help you figure out what works best in a given situation, increasing your chances of hooking a Murray Cod.
How To Catch Murray Cod – Final Thoughts
In this post we have covered we believe we have covered everything to equip any angler with all the information required to go and Catch Muray Cod, starting from cool facts about Murray Cod and their legal size and catch limits to the best techniques for catching them, the best spots in Sydney to find them, and the best equipment and baits to use.
We have highlighted the importance of finding the right fishing spot and using the right techniques to increase your chances of catching Murray Cod. We’ve also explored the different types of baits and lures you can use to target these fish and recommended some of our favourite rods, reels, and lines for this type of fishing.
In general, Murray Cod fishing can be a challenging but rewarding species to target, and with the right knowledge and gear, you can improve your chances of successfully getting to the prize. Grab your gear and hit the water, and we hope this guide is what you need to kickstart your Murray Cod fishing journey!
How To Catch Murray Cod – FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions
What time of day is best for catching Murray Cod?
Murray Cod are more active during low light conditions, such as dawn and dusk, making these times the best for fishing.
What is the best bait to use when targeting Murray Cod?
Murray Cod will eat a variety of baits, but live or dead freshwater yabbies, shrimp, and worms are some of the most effective.
What type of lure works best for catching Murray Cod?
Hardbody lures, spinnerbaits, and swimbaits are popular choices for targeting Murray Cod.
Can Murray Cod be caught in rivers or only in lakes?
Murray Cod can be caught in both rivers and lakes. Look for areas with structure, such as rock ledges or fallen trees, where Murray Cod are likely to be hiding.
What is the legal size limit for Murray Cod in Sydney, NSW?
The legal size limit for Murray Cod in NSW is 55-75cm, with a bag limit of two fish per person.
What type of rod and reel is best for catching Murray Cod?
A medium to heavy action baitcasting rod with a high gear ratio reel is ideal for catching Murray Cod, as they require a strong rod to handle their size and strength.
Meet The Author
William O’Reilly is an Australian land-based fishing enthusiast. He discovered his passion for fishing from the shore as a child, when his grandfather would take him out on the water and teach him the ropes.
He encourages others to try land-based fishing and believes it is a unique and sustainable way to connect with nature. He also advocates for responsible fishing practices and conservation. His passion for land-based fishing led him to pursue a career in writing about it, sharing his experiences, knowledge and thoughts about the sport, and inspiring others to appreciate and explore it.
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