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Boost for fish habitat

Increasing fish habitats is a great way to improve fishing in the long term.

THE Victorian Government has announced four new fish habitat projects, worth more than $267,000, to make fishing even better across Victorian rivers.

Increasing fish habitats is a great way to improve fishing in the long term because it provides new homes for fish where they can feed, shelter and breed.

The new projects were announced today on the Goulburn River in Seymour, downstream from where the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA) has installed nearly 300 snags for native fish such as Murray cod.

The Goulburn Broken CMA will manage two of these new projects worth $69,000. The first will install snags in the lower Goulburn River at three sites near its confluence with the Murray River. The second will place boulders and snags into the water to create more diverse fish habitats on the Rubicon River.

The iconic Snowy River will benefit too, thanks to a $110,000 project to be undertaken by the East Gippsland Catchment Management Authority. This project will improve fish habitat density and connectivity that will assist stocked populations of Australian bass and other migratory native fish.

The fourth new fish habitat project is on the Mitta Mitta River where the North East CMA will deliver $88,000 worth of fish habitat work between Lake Hume and Eskdale.

The North East CMA has installed more than 200 log structures into the river during recent years and scientific monitoring has confirmed they were rapidly utilised by native fish.

Adding habitat also helps optimise the return to anglers from annual stockings of Murray cod, grown at the Victorian Fisheries Authority’s Snobs Creek hatchery. More than 135,000 Murray cod fingerlings have been stocked into the lower Mitta Mitta River since 2012.

The four new fish habitat projects are funded through recreational fishing licence fees.

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