Where do pearl perch spawn?

A study aims to better understand the spwaning habits of pearl perch (image: Ben Diggles).

RECREATIONAL, charter and commercial fishers are invited to donate pearl perch fish frames as part of a study into better understanding the species’ spawning habits.

Project leader and Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) scientist, Matthew Campbell said the Department was working to find out more about the reproductive biology of pearl perch, with very few spawning fish caught in traditional fishing grounds.

“We do know that spawning occurs at the northern end of their range near the Swains Reef area and in the deeper waters off Fraser Island,” he said.

“Fish in spawning condition have also recently been caught in deep water offshore from the Sunshine Coast.

“As part of our research, we want to collect pearl perch from these and other areas to better understand the location and timing of spawning.

“We’ll be doing our own field trips to collect pearl perch but we encourage fishers to help us out by donating their own fish frames.

“The frames allow us to assess important information such as maturity, spawning activity and growth.

“We’ll also be tagging spawning pearl perch to determine movement to and from spawning locations.

“Previous research suggests pearl perch may migrate to spawning areas and by using tagging and acoustic tracking we can test this theory.”

To donate a pearl perch fish frame, please record a general location and water depth of capture and contact (DAF) on 13 25 23 to arrange collection.

Results of this research will help improve our knowledge of pearl perch which is currently classified as depleted.

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