Project Icefish survey – Win prizes!

A RESEARCH team is taking a closer look at the way fishos dispatch fish intended for the table.

Regardless of whether fish feel pain or not, we all have a responsibility to treat the fish that we catch humanely – and that includes both those that we release, and those that we keep to eat. Treating fish intended for the table with respect also helps to maximise their eating quality as well.

Fisho’s marine biology editor Dr Ben Diggles is one member of Project Icefish’s research team. Last year he helped deliver a project looking at iki jime (basically brain spiking), which confirmed iki jime to be best practice for dispatching of fish, and developed a range of resources to enable recreational fishers to apply this approach when taking fish for the table. See the iki jime website at for more details, including cool x-ray images of many popular fish species targeted by Aussie fishos.

Dr Diggles explains “Project Icefish is really a logical next step from last year’s iki jime project, which looks specifically at use of ice slurry (a mixture of ice and water) to dispatch fish intended for the table. Like iki jime, ice slurry is considered a humane technique, however to date no one has examined the research available to confirm this, or established how prevalent this practice is among Australian fishers. This project will address these gaps in our understanding”.

Is it best practice to throw fish straight into an ice slurry as a way of dispatching them? This project will find out.

As part of the project, which is funded through the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry’s Australian Animal Welfare Strategy, a survey is being undertaken to help understand how many Aussie fishers use this technique, and on what species. The researchers will also be reviewing scientific information available that looks at ice slurry for dispatching fish, to try and identify any knowledge gaps requiring further investigation.

Killing the fish is an important part of the process of taking a feed of fish for the table, and through this project the researchers hope to provide Australia’s fishers with the information they need to apply best practice methods for humane killing of fish. In today’s world, use of the best practices possible for taking fish is important if we are to continue to maintain broad community support for Australia’s favourite pastime.

Success of this project will rely upon fishers from all around Australia filling in a short online survey – click on the link here to access the survey. It’s only nine questions long, and takes less than two minutes to fill in, so please click on the link below and take a moment to fill it out, to play your part in this important project. slurry prizes.jpg


Five lucky participants who complete the survey and get the last question right will win a great prize pack, including an iki gun and board courtesy of Adept Ltd, and a great WAECO ice box generously donated by Dometic Group. So click on the link for a chance to win!

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