To relieve fishing pressure on the more fragile waterways in the ACT and to help conserve native species, the ACT Government has released a draft fish stocking plan for the next five years.
Minister for Water Shane Rattenbury said the proposed ACT fish stocking plan will offer greater protection to our native fish species, improve catchment health, and maintain viable recreational fishing locations for the community to enjoy.
“We want to balance recreational fishing opportunities and stocking with the ability of native fish populations to breed, mature and maintain their important role in aquatic ecosystems,” Minister Rattenbury said.
“Updates to the regulations on the take limit for Golden Perch, restricted areas for Murray Cod, and classifications of trout waters and prohibited waters will ensure that native fish populations are able to thrive in ACT waterways.”
Minister for the Environment Rebecca Vassarotti said the increase in fishing pressure combined with declining fish populations means that greater fisheries management is required.
“The proposed stocking plan aids in the conservation of native fish species by relieving fishing pressure in our natural rivers and helping to establish balanced lake ecosystems where fish may have been depleted,” Minister Vassarotti said.
“Surveys carried out by the ACT Government have shown that Murray Cod and Macquarie Perch are significantly less common in the ACT section of the Murrumbidgee River than they were 40 years ago. Both Trout Cod and Silver Perch have also become extinct in the ACT and are listed as threatened species.
“The proposed stocking plan will guide the stocking of Murray Cod and Golden Perch into Lake Ginninderra, Lake Tuggeranong, Gungahlin Pond and Yerrabi Pond at an approximate cost of $25,000 per annum.
“The new plan also includes guidelines for stocking endangered fish species, stocking undertaken for scientific research, and will serve as a useful planning tool for fisheries managers and suppliers.”
Since 2011, a combined total of 734,118 Murray Cod and Golden Perch have been stocked into ACT urban lakes.
The ACT Government updates the fish stocking plan every five years and in accordance with the Fisheries Act 2000. Community members have an opportunity to provide feedback on the draft ACT Fisheries Management Plan: Fish Stocking 2022–2027 on the YourSay Conversations website until 18 November 2022.