AUSTRALIAN FIRST TROUT COD FISHERY OPENS IN BEECHWORTH

In an Australian first, recreational anglers can now fish for trout cod in Victoria with the Andrews Labor Government delivering on a key election commitment to establish the fishery in Beechworth.

Premier Daniel Andrews today joined Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford and Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes in Beechworth to officially open Lakes Sambell and Kerferd for trout cod fishing.

The commitment to establish the fishery is a key part of the Labor Government’s Target One Million plan – which will get more Victorians fishing more often.

Prior to today’s announcement, anglers were required to return trout cod to the water if caught.

Now thanks to the dedicated stocking program that has seen 45,000 baby trout cod fingerlings released into the lakes since 2008, and support from the National Trout Cod Recovery Plan, anglers can legally fish for trout cod in Beechworth.

Trout cod fingerling production at the Government’s Snobs Creek hatchery will expand and continue to support the recovery of the species in the wild, while further developing the two new fisheries.

To ensure the fisheries are sustainable, harvest of trout cod will be restricted to a daily bag limit of one per angler, and complemented by a minimum size of 40 cm and a maximum size of 50 cm.

Mr Andrews also announced $1 million worth of new recreational fishing projects to improve fishing opportunities across the state.

The 17 new projects will be funded by fishing licence fees and provide more recreational fishing opportunities for beginners and experts alike, whether they fish in lakes, rivers, bays or offshore.

The Labor Government’s Target One Million plan will boost fish stocks from three to five million per annum, improve fishing and boating facilities and promote the great pastime of recreational fishing.

Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“Creating Australia’s first trout cod fishery makes our state an even better place to wet a line with the kids, family and friends.”

“More recreational fishers will mean more jobs and support for local businesses in Beechworth and across Victoria.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford

“Recreational fishing is a great family pastime and contributes $2.3 billion to our communities.”

“The 17 new recreational fishing projects announced today will help us boost angler numbers towards one million. It’s great news for our anglers.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes

“Our Target One Million plan will give local families better opportunities to spend more time together outdoors.”