The Victorian Coalition Government continues to support further improvement of freshwater fishing opportunities for Australian recreational anglers.
According to the media release issued by the Premier of Victoria Denis Napthine 50 000 estuary perch fingerlings have been released in five lakes in the southwest last week.
Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Peter Walsh said the fish had been released into Lake Bolac (35,000), Lake Struan (9,000), Lake Hamilton (4,000), Lake Beaufort (1,000), and Lake Pertobe (1,000).
“The Coalition Government is committed to improving recreational fishing opportunities for the 721,000 licensed anglers across the state, now and into the future. These stockings of estuary perch fingerlings, between two to five centimetres in length, will be of catchable size, which is 27cm, within three to four years.”
“These perch stockings have been jointly funded by revenue from the sale of fishing licence fees as well as the Coalition Government’s $16 million Recreational Fishing Initiative. The Coalition’s Recreational Fishing Initiative is not only stocking fish but is also improving access and facilities, upgrading boat launching facilities, building new fishing reefs, undertaking more fisheries research and strengthening fisheries enforcement and education. A second batch of estuary perch will also be stocked into Albert Park Lake and Devilbend Reservoir in the coming weeks,” said Mr Walsh.
The Minister further added that estuary perch stockings into Lake Bolac are progressing well and some fish have already reached 20cm, most likely from a stocking in early 2012.
“This is encouraging for anglers and bodes well for Fisheries’ expanded stocking plan this year, which includes several waters not previously stocked with estuary perch. This expanded program is possible due to the efforts of volunteer anglers who have generously helped to catch wild brood stock perch each year.”
“Dubbed ‘The Great Perch Search’, the brood stock collection has involved teams of keen anglers who caught mature male and female perch for transport to the Narooma hatchery,” said Mr Walsh.