Murray Cod Fishing

Murray Cod Fishing in Australia

small green spotted murray cod fish

Did you know that Murray Cod can live up to 50 years and travels nearly 120 km to spawn? This aggressive fish that calls Australia's Murry-Darling Basin home is one of the most sought-after fish. 

With Murray Cod season quickly approaching, you might be wondering about helpful fishing tips to get you started with catching one of these Beautiful fish. 

Luckily, we have a complete fishing guide for you. In this article, we talk about where you can find the Murray Cod, how to catch it, and the right gear you will need. Keep reading on for more information!

About the Murray Cod

Australia is well-known for its Murray Cod fishing season, which lasts from 1 December thru 31 August. If you find yourself near some freshwater, you will want to take a shot at Australia's largest freshwater fish, which can measure approximately 1.8 meters long. 

The Murray Cod is an apex predator fish species in the Murray-Darling Basin. The Murray-Darling Basin is an enormous water catchment, encompassing 14% of Australia's land mass. You can find it in the southeast portion of Australia, which includes two main rivers: Murray and Darling.

You can find the Murray Cod, amongst other wildlife species in these rivers. They primarily feed on:

  • Yabbies
  • Shrimp
  • Carp

Although, it is not entirely uncommon to see them feed on turtles, ducks, snakes, mice, and frogs. 

How to Catch Murray Cod

When fishing for Murray Cod, it helps to know a few different types of fishing techniques to use that mimic what they feed on. There are seven primary ways you can catch Murray Cod, including:

  • Bait (e.g., worms, yabbies, Bardi grubs)
  • Hardbody lures
  • Spinnerbaits
  • Swimbaits
  • Surface lures
  • Soft plastics

Bait and hardbody lures are two of the most popular fishing tools for more than Murray Cod, but don't limit yourself to these two techniques. For example, spinnerbaits are excellent options since they work well in shallow or deep water and come in a myriad of sizes and shapes. 

Since Murray Cod often prey on unsuspecting fish, tossing in a swimbait gives the appearance of an injured prey that may seem appetizing to snagging a Murray Cod. 

Best Lures for Murray Cod

When fishing for Murray Cod, try out your flashy lures and spinnerbaits for the best of luck. Aim for lure sizes between 70 mm to 85 mm. Don't be afraid to cast a neon-colored Size 2 Stumpjumper fishing lure near the woody riverbanks and see if it garners any interest. 

Fishing Technique

Using lures is one of the more exciting ways to catch Murray Cod. If you have never fished with lures before, it involves a few more steps than simply casting out a piece of bait and waiting for a strike. 

There are several fishing techniques that you can use that mimic how a fish or other piece of bait might be alluring to a Murray Cod. One simple technique involves a small flick or jerk of the wrist while slowly reeling in more line, which mimics how a bait fish would be swimming. 

You can also cast your lure and let it sink for ten seconds before jerking it toward you slightly. Wait again and repeat the process. The technique gives the appearance of an injured fish. 

And if you are running out of ideas, hop on a kayak or small watercraft and simply practice trolling. This involves placing your line with a lure or bait and letting it trail behind you as you move downriver. 

Here are a few other helpful tips for catching Murray Cod:

  • Snags are good indicators
  • Fish in the lowlight
  • Fish moving water and back-eddies
  • Fish any depth from 70cm+

Murray Cod love to hide behind logs and other hideaway spots. Find areas along the bank with rotted trees or tree branches and try a few casts. 

Best Fishing Gear for Murray Cod

Larger Murray Cod are powerful, and you need the right gear to help you reel in your catch. Most serious anglers are equipped with several rods, including a couple suited for heavier bait and casts. 

Murray Cod can measure well over 80 centimeters and weigh 40 or more kilograms. It is best that you come overprepared versus underprepared when tackling these fish. Here are a few ideas on Murray Cod gear to help you get started: 

You can play with the weights and drag on these pieces of fishing equipment, but investing in medium to heavy bait casting rods upfront ensures you are ready when a larger Murray Cod strikes. 

Do You Need a Fishing Guide?

You don't need a fishing guide to get started catching Murray Cod, although you will need an active fishing license. It does help if you have access to a boat or kayak and can practice trolling.

This covers a larger area and gives you a better chance at snagging one of these fish. If you haven't ever fished for Murray Cod before or don't want to invest in the gear, it might be worth your while to find a local guide or friends that can show you the ropes. 

Australia's Best Fishing Tips

Now that you know a few fishing tips for catching Murray Cod, it is time to start preparing now for your next Murray Cod Fishing Trip. At Trelly's, we specialize in all types of fishing gear designed to tackle Australia's rugged outdoor terrain.

Where can you find Murray Cod?

Below is a map of the Murray Cod Distribution throughout the Murray Darling Basin.

Maps of Murray Darling Basin that links to Murray Cod Locations

Rocky River in Forest

7 Ways to Catch Murray Cod


Worms, Yabbies and Bardi Grubs the most easily accesible baits although chicken, cheese and other fatty, oily baits work great. Bait is your best option on a river bank but dont let that stop you having a flick with a lure on another rod at the same time. Make sure   Hooks and Sinkers Available here


Hardbody Lures

Hard Body lures are great for trolling and flicking lake walls and river banks. Dont be suprised by a Golden Perch taking the same size lure!


Spinnerbaits are a great alrounder because you can fish them at all depths, shallow or deep. They come in many different shapes and sizes but the most popular spinnerbait of all is the Bassman Codman series in a 5/8oz.



Swimbaits can be used to look like an injured fish and typically used in the first few feet from the surface of the water - although weights can be purchased to swim them deeper!

Surface Lures

Surface lures are the most exciting way to catch murray cod and can be caught during any time of the day - cod will sit higher in the water column during dusk and dawn though ;)

Soft Plastics

Chasing cod that are a bit fussy? The more life like you can get your bait the better! Clear water is advised for baits with no rattles although we've been proven wrong before.

Lipless Crankbaits

Rattle cod's brains with a Lipless Crankbait. Your bound to get a reaction.

A post shared by Colby Lesko (@colbylesko) on


For more info about murray cod fishing check out these two local legend on YouTube and Facebook,

Man holding Freshwater Yabbies excited

Man holding large murray cod green fish on bright sunny day on a river