The Victorian Government today released 30,000 Murray cod fingerlings into Lake Eildon as part of its commitment to restock the lake with an additional one million fish.
Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Peter Walsh said Lake Eildon was being stocked thanks to an $800,000 project funded by fishing licence fees.
“One million cod will be released over three years, in addition to the 50,000 a year already being released,” Mr Walsh said.
“More than 380,000 Murray cod have now gone into the lake this summer stocking season, which is a native fish stocking record for any Victorian water.”
Parliamentary Secretary for Primary Industries Bill Sykes was on hand for today’s release which marks the final stage of this season’s Murray cod stocking into Lake Eildon.
Mr Walsh said the Coalition had committed to increasing funding by $4 million over the next four years in addition to returning all revenue raised from fishing licences to the recreational fishing industry.
“Lake Eildon will also be stocked with 200,000 golden perch fingerlings in autumn along with trout releases during the cooler months of 2011,” Mr Walsh said.
“These cod, perch and trout will grow very well, given the high water level and productive inundated ground that is brimming with microscopic life.”
Mr Walsh said the project, titled ‘Murray Cod Million – Lake Eildon’, also involves active monitoring by a dedicated team of volunteer anglers and fisheries scientists from Snobs Creek.
“We will track the progress of this large pulse of juvenile cod by combining expert angler feedback with formal surveys by researchers,” Mr Walsh said.
Executive Director of Fisheries Victoria Anthony Hurst said Alexandra fisheries officers had reported good angler catches of Murray cod from Lake Eildon over the last year with many fish approaching minimum size and several over 80 centimetres.
“This confirms cod stockings over the last 15 years have worked, which bodes well for the expanded approach we are adopting for the next few years.”
For more information about projects that are improving fishing opportunities by putting fishing licence fees to work visit www.dpi.vic.gov.au/fishing/feesatwork.
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