Have your say on trout cod stockings

PLANS for a recreational fishery involving the stocking of trout cod in NSW impoundments went on public exhibition this week.

Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Director Aquaculture Conservation and Marine Parks, Bill Talbot, said the proposal will use trout cod fingerlings produced at Narrandera Fisheries Centre to stock nine dams across regional NSW.

“Initially the fishery will be catch-and-release only, however subject to the stocking success, limited bag limits may be established in the future,” Mr Talbot said.

“Trout cod are an endangered species and will remain totally protected in rivers and streams. But this project gives us great hope that fishers could once again set the sights on catching this special species in dams.

“The enhancement of recreational fishing opportunities has social and economic benefits for regional communities and the proposal is also expected to contribute to community awareness and understanding of threatened species.”

Dams to be stocked include Windamere Dam near Mudgee, Ben Chifley Dam near Bathurst, Lake Canobolas and Gosling Creek Reservoir near Orange, Captains Flat and Googong Dams near Queanbeyan and Blowering Dam, Jounama Pondage and Talbingo Dam near Tumut.

The successful trout cod conservation stocking program in rivers will also continue. The program has been instrumental in re-establishing a recruiting population of trout cod in the mid-Murrumbidgee between Gundagai and Yanco.

“Anglers have also been instrumental in supporting the recovery efforts to date and have complimented work by DPI to recover trout cod populations in NSW,” Mr Talbot said.

This will not be the first time NSW DPI has bred a threatened species to support recreational fishing. Silver Perch, another threatened species, has been routinely produced at the Narrandera Fisheries Centre for stocking into regional impoundments for many years.

The public exhibition of the proposed Order and an associated Species Impact Statement are funded by the recreational fishing trust.

DPI is encouraging people with any interest in the proposed project to make a written submission. Submissions close Friday 14 December.

The Species Impact Statement including a copy of the proposed Order and information on how to make a submission are available HERE.

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