June 25, 2017 So many amazing trout! What? Why? How? Where? Interesting facebook discussion on why Taupo/Tongariro are enjoying such an amazing trout fishing season – judging by the consistently splendid condition of trout being landed (and/or released mid-current). SWMBO is certain the TRM lucky hats are to blame but others may have better reasons and ideas. Laurel Teirney Cmon Ross what are the factors contributing to this amazing season? Grant Insley As an aficionado of TRMs font of knowledge, I can state without fear of contradiction, the first factor is being there and getting the line wet. Actually the lake is and has been full of very large smelt, more food = bigger fish. Laurel Teirney OK OK guys – makes all kinds of sense – but why are the stocks of smelt doing so well in the lake? Tongariro River Motel Good question! More zooplankton? Laurel Teirney Hmm quite probably – and so n down the “food chain”. I don’t know about your weather this past summer but its been real weird down here – the hottest year of record followed by the coldest and windiest summer….Could you weather (climate change) have resulted in more algal growth and so on up the chain? Just a thought Grant Insley Taupo is actually quite sterile in terms of algae. Probably the major source of food is from phytoplankton. BUT I do agree weather patterns have been different. Taupo is so big that weather actually drives currents in the lake causing it to ‘turn over’, alleviates stratification I believe. Taupo as been fairly well documented over the years, I believe indicating cyclical changes. Being cyclical you’d think that would make management easier in terms of predictability. Seems DoC haven’t got that far yet. Never mind why for now, just get out there and get those lines wet……. Laurel Teirney Now that is really interesting Grant….Phytoplankton is what I was calling algae. And I believe Lake Wanaka “suffered” an internal oscillating seiche due to the nor west gales this past summer. Further, I reckon lake snot – or Lindavia (a Diatom) that would have been in the phytoplankton layer was bought up to the surface by that internal seiches oscillating up and down our 40km long lake. And that caused all kinds of issues – blocked filters/town water supply – and swimmers covered in lake snot – yuk! Now Lake Taupo could also have experienced surface and internal seiches if it was really windy there. Not sure how that would have affected the phytoplankton, zooplankton and smelt – but it would be really interesting to find out a bit more…. David Hamilton is the most respected lake ecologist in the country and we agree that some weird water movement patterns were taking place down here in Lake Wanaka. He measured them on 24/25 February when he was down. Was anyone sampling Taupo over the summer? Laurel Teirney If Lake Taupo “turned over” this summer nutrients from the deep water would have been bought up to the surface and that might have powered the growth of phytoplankton …and on up the food chain – oh boy – this is getting exciting ☺️ Grant Insley I believe it’s temperature related myself and that’s what drives win and other weather events. Comparing Taupo with Rotorua in terms of nutrient loading and algal blooms concentrating smelt in small locations makes feeding trout easy to target. Laurel Teirney Guess both wind and temperature drives these internal water movements that could concentrate smelt – I don’t know but I’m going to have to sign off for the moment – perhaps you and a few other knowledgeable fishers could get together and share your ideas? But would love to be kept in the loop – as we’re talking stuff that could be of national significance here Andrew Jenkins less fish equals more food and bigger fish…. maybe like lake O ….?