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Freshwater fishing

Freshwater fishing methods

Other fishing


The New Zealand Trout's Larder

The New Zealand trout's diet

While trout will feed on whatever is available to them at the time, there are certain food sources that played a much larger role in their diet. What they are feeding on will vary from location to location, over the year and even over the course of a day.

Some of the made food sources are listed below.


In most rivers and lesser extent and still waters, insects at various stages of their maturity form the staple of the trout 's diet. The two major insect groups that make up the trouts diet are

At times opportunistic trout will also feed on such as insects as blow flies, wasps, grasshoppers, lacewings, bees and moths. But by far the largest proportion (80% or more) of the trout's diet is taken when insects are in their larval or pupa stages.

In the height of summer and particularly in the evening the trout will often shift their focus away from what is under the surface to what is floating down in the current. At these times it is useful to be able to change to a dry fly pattern.

Small fish and other aqautic life

In lakes and on the larger rivers particularly around the river mouths, small fish and other aqautic life also make up a substantial part of the trout 's diet. The food includes

  • smelt
  • bullies
  • whitebait
  • water boatman
  • frogs and tadpoles
  • snails

Ttrout will also eat juveniles from their own species. When the whitebait move into the rivers during autumn and early summer, the trout will often move downstream to take advantage of this food source. In the lakes where there are large smelt populations, trout will migrate in search of these small fish as they form the principal part of their diet.

Other food

Trout can be very selective in what they eat but will often take advantage of any food source that is offered to them. At times trout have been caught with tadpoles, frogs and even small mice within their stomachs showing that they are partial to variety in their diet.

One particular food source that has been recognized by many anglers is of course fish roe or the fish eggs laid by spawning trout. Trout do not seem to be able to resist eating these when they are washed down stream in the current and these have been imitated successfully by Glo-bugs and Muppets.






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