GREG'S LEGACY

Specialising in the human experience of Living with prostate cancer – warts and all

Future of alien fish – read trout – on the line


I was advised about four years ago, by a VicFish representative, that a decision to close the King River to all fishing had been taken by the DSE. All they needed was an acceptable excuse to sell it to the public. The reasoning was to turn it into a nursery for Trout Cod.

Of course they denied it … as they would! But it is still on the agenda, and now covering the whole Murray Darling Basin, according to the following report in the Border Mail (here).

BRAD WORRRALL Archived from Border Mail 31 Dec 07

THE head of the Murray-Darling Basin Commission says stories it was set to rid the region’s rivers of trout is a beat-up.

Yesterday Wendy Craik said the commission had only issued a tender for a three-year study into the effect of alien fish on the native populations.

She said trout is one of 11 fish on the list and consultants will investigate just two species.

“This study is about quantifying the issue,” Dr Craik said.

“Any decision on the future of trout or any of the other alien fish is a decision for governments.

“There has been a lot of talk but very little in the way of research into most of the alien species, other than carp.

“The final document, due in 2011, will establish the environmental, social and economic benefits of control measures — it will be then up to governments to decide what is best.”

It was good news for Scott McPherson from Indulgence Flyfishing.

The Wodonga fishing guide said most of his business was chasing trout.

“It is also big tourist business for the North East,” he said.

“When I first heard I thought it was another case of choosing to close something down because it is too hard to control it.”

Tender documents, available on the commission’s website, show some fish will be taken from rivers as part of a trial to assess the cost effectiveness of such a program and effects on native fish stocks.

It says another commission study lists alien fishes as one of the major threats to native fish.

But it also says in most instances total eradication is not feasible.

Now the Murray Darling Basin Commission is denying it too. However, the title of the project is “Native fish recovery following the removal of alien fish species“.

Carp and trout are the two most populous ‘alien’ species in the basin and are the most likely candidates for removal. Whilst the carp have proved to be an invasive species that has not been able to be managed, trout – on the other hand – have never proved to be damaging to the riverine habitat and are the basis of our fresh water fishing industry worth billions of dollars to the Australian economy.

The loss of trout would adversely affect the tourism industry of the Snowy Mountains system as well as the Ovens and Goulburn systems. The only place left in Australia to catch trout would be in Tasmania … notwithstanding a small fishery around Pemberton in Western Australia.

Any attempt to eliminate trout from Victorian or New South Wales waters will fail whilst there are trout angling groups, unofficially encouraged by tourism operators, prepared to engage in civil disobedience by stocking the waters with trout from fish farms. Let the games begin.

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Written by Greg Naylor

31 December 2007 at 4:41 pm

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  1. trout – on the other hand – have never proved to be damaging to the riverine habitat

    What about the argument that they compete with endangered native fish for food resources?

    Any attempt to eliminate trout from Victorian or New South Wales waters will fail whilst there are trout angling groups, unofficially encouraged by tourism operators, prepared to engage in civil disobedience by stocking the waters with trout from fish farms. Let the games begin.

    You’re probably right there…

    Kieran

    31 December 2007 at 7:01 pm

  2. Trout were brought to Australia 1n the 1850’s under government sponsorship. They were brought here because there was no native fishery worth catching. Consequently, there is no reference point to compare any effect on native fish populations.

    The trout is carnivorous eating worms, insects, frogs, lavae, and dead animals that fall in the water. Most natives are not – that is why they don’t taste as good as trout … and that is why most anglers are not interested in them.

    Greg Naylor

    31 December 2007 at 7:20 pm

  3. google barred galaxia and you will see that this adorable native fish is faced with imminent extinction for no other reason than the presence of trout in their habitat waterways.
    Of course the trout should go, as should carp, that other abborhation of our waterways introduced for no other reason than for yobbos to catch on a fishing line.

    kryptosporidian

    1 January 2008 at 10:44 pm

  4. Trout don’t displace native species? Rubbish! To quote the federal environment department:

    Trout are opportunistic feeders, consuming a wide variety of animals including aquatic macroinvertebrates, small fish and terrestrial invertebrates (McDowall 1996). A number of native fish species are also prey for trout. Trout have been observed to feed selectively on small fish in preference to other food. Predation by trout is considered to be the main threat to a number of endangered native species such as the barred galaxias (Galaxias fuscus) (Raadik 1995).

    Brown trout are aggressive and territorial and may compete with native fish for habitats that offer the best cover or feeding positions. Overlaps in diet between trout and native species such as Macquarie perch, river blackfish and trout cod have led to a decline in the abundance of these species (Arthington 1991). In river systems where trout are present, native fish are often restricted to the upper reaches of the rivers in areas that are inaccessible to trout (e.g. Raadik 1995).

    Kieran

    2 January 2008 at 12:30 am

  5. Keiren, your quote from the federal environment department is full of holes.

    When trout fishers take a trout, they immediately clean it and open the gut to see what it has been eating so they can imitate the food source and catch more trout.

    It is a rare event to find another fish in their gut. The main diet is caddis and mayfly nymphs (aquatic macroinvertebrates, plus tree beetles and grasshoppers (terrestrial invertebrates). Take a look in any fly fishers fly box and compare the insect representations to the fish representations. After all, these are the guys who understand the trout diet.

    In river systems where trout are present, native fish are often restricted to the upper reaches of the rivers in areas that are inaccessible to trout (e.g. Raadik 1995)

    There is no upper reach of a river inaccessible to trout. The upper reaches are where trout lay their eggs. Until the egg sacs of the trout hatchlings are consumed, they are predated upon by native fish, frogs yabbies and turtles. So what comes around, goes around.

    kryptosporidian Says: … google barred galaxia and you will see that this adorable native fish is faced with imminent extinction for no other reason than the presence of trout in their habitat waterways.

    Trout have co-existed with our native fish for over 150 years and suddenly the barred galaxia is facing imminent extinction. Do you think agricultural chemical runoff over the last 50 years has had no effect on the riverine environment?

    You see, there are logical arguments against every considered research opinion. You have to look at the terms of reference for the specific research.

    Remember, the title of the current project is “Native fish recovery following the removal of alien fish species“.

    Greg Naylor

    2 January 2008 at 3:44 pm

  6. Saving our natives from ‘alien’ species
    It’s ‘no cause’ for alarm to trout anglers
    Written by JEFF ZEUSCHNER. (Chronicle archive 3 Jan 08)

    THE head of the Murray-Darling Basin Commission said trout anglers have no cause for alarm from new moves to help protect native fish from ‘alien’ species.

    Fishing bodies have voiced concerns a new study to be funded by the commission could be the first steps towards eradication of trout from local waterways.

    But the commission’s chief executive, Wendy Craik, this week said that was unrealistic.

    She acknowledged trout were a good money spinner for local communities, and eradication of the most popular of all ‘alien’ species was not feasible – but control measures for some introduced species would be probed.

    The three year study, titled “Native fish recovery following the removal of alien fish species”, is to look at the cost/benefit of control measures and the level of alien species reduction needed to deliver a significant benefit to native fish communities.

    Results are then expected to be discussed with government and could influence policy.

    Dr Craik said the study re-inforces the national native fish strategy and is a first small step in a 50 year national vision to help protect native fish species, which include Murray cod, trout cod and yellowbelly.

    Latest data suggests the 11 alien fish species – of which carp, red fin and trout are priorities – account for 70 per cent of the fish population, and up to 90 per cent of the biomass of fishes in the basin.

    Dr Craik said community input would help determine the two alien species to be the subjects of the study, and in which waterways it will be undertaken.

    Wangaratta Fly Fishing Club vice president Steve Sherratt, who deals with anglers daily through his employment at Adventuring Fishing and Camping in Rowan Street, said he believed trout co-habitated well with native species in local North East waters.

    “I know they’re not native, but trout have been here 150 years,” he said.

    “Getting rid of them from local waterways isn’t going to help cod and yellowbelly…but certainly redfin are a bigger pest to these native species.”

    Mr Sherratt said he believed the cooler climate waterways were better suited for trout, with native species preferring the warmer waters.

    Greg Naylor

    3 January 2008 at 9:51 pm

  7. greg

    i saw this site and thought i had better point out some inaccuracies.

    first trout weren’t introduced in the 1850’s. initially they were introduced to tasmania and then to victoria in the 1870’s. widespread liberation commenced in the 1880’s.

    your reasons for the introduction are very inaccurate. yes in parts of tasmania and some costal streams there was an absence of large sporting fish but in the murray darling basin that was simply not the case. in the majority of upland areas both trout cod and macquarie perch provided magnificent fisheries up to all but the highest of streams, rivers near oberon, adaminaby, corrying, omeo, bright, jamieson, etc abounded in these species.

    trout were not introduced to these areas due to a lack of sporting fish rather due to a desire of the people of that time to surround them with things familiar from the old world. its understandable, its a human trait to be nostalgic. but its because of this that we have not only trout but redfin, carp, willows and a host of other things that we are now stuck with, providing varying degrees of benefit or harm. the myth of empty rivers is a recent one created to justify the introduction of trout. the writings of the acclimatisation societies that introduced them often contain references to the cod and bream in these rivers.

    the reasons why trout cod and macquarie perch disappeared vary from place to place however there are first hand accounts that within two decades of the introduction of trout that these two fish had disappeared from some waters. that doesnt mean that trout are wholly responsible for their decline, in many cases it has been environmental change, but at the highest altitudes they were a major factor. your comment about trout coexisting with native fish needs challenging. where are they? there are many upland streams where macquarie perch have disappeared from that are in very good condition. so where are these co-existing populations? actually i do know of a few and typically they are at the bottom end of the range that is tolerable for trout. in the higher altitude streams where they once flourished macquarie perch have vanished. these species of native fish are well adapted to cooler temperatures.

    there are headwater areas that dont hold trout typically above major barriers such as falls and these hold populations of endangered galaxias. a study conducted in 1950 found that the major item in the diet of trout in the ovens system were native fish like blackfish. many studies have shown the trout have a severe impact on native galaxias minnows. the reason they are not turning up in the trout that you have cleaned is they have seriously declined in the rivers and along with their decline has been a decline in the growth rate of trout which now have to largely subside on insects.

    now the reason i have responded here is that type of comments you are making are harmful to the interests of fishermen. there is no secret plan to generally eradicate trout. right now senior people from angling groups representing trout and native fish anglers are meeting to develop a system of stream classification whereby some streams will be earmarked for long term development as fisheries for native fish and others to be retained, managed and developed as trout fisheries. no closures involved, just develop some new and exciting fisheries and undo an injustic that was done over 100 years ago. the majority of trout fisheries will remain just that.

    there is not nor has there ever been a plan to shut the king river to fishing. in fact the plan is once a self sustaining population of trout cod is developed to phase in angling for them. in fact the government is about to announce the development of a pilot fishery for them in the ovens valley.

    so greg your comments are really unhelpful to those of us that actually are trying to improve fishing opportunities and maintain trout fisheries. yes there are certain rare cases where it is necessary to remove or at least control trout like the few streams that still hold the barred galaxias.

    but remember we are talking about national parks here and one of their purposes is to provide an environment for native animals. so you would suggest that native animals be excluded from national parks for the benefit of introduced species? your comments about civil disobedience and shifting trout back to these areas is the type of stupidity that would get anglers shut out of these places. it makes us all look like rednecks. you are basically telling conservation groups and the government that anglers cant be trusted. losing access to parks would be far more damaging to the tourist industry then developing fisheries for native fish in them.

    this type of hysterical, uninformed comments are the sort of thing that might get us anglers banned out of national parks. i’d suggest if you really care about angling and tourism that you do your homework in the future and be more circumspect in your comments.

    will trueman

    will trueman

    28 January 2008 at 9:49 am

  8. Will,
    We were both wrong on the importation of trout ova. It was 1864.

    Together with the governments of Tasmania. Victoria and New Zealand. Edward Wilson successfully imported Atlantic Salmon and Brown Trout eggs to Melbourne, Tasmania and on to New Zeaiand. This shipment was arranged by James Youll. 3,000 trout eggs were collected by Francis Francis and Dr Frank Buckland who, having initiated the acclimatisation, presented the government with the ova. 100.000 Atlantic Salmon eggs ware collected by Admiral Keppel. The ship “Norfolk” sailed on Januapy 21 and arrived in Melbourne April I5. The 170 boxes were transferred to Hobart on the Colonial Steamship “Victoria”. Arriving at the hatchery at 1 am. on the 21st April. The journey had taken 91 days from London.
    The first Trout in the southern hemisphere hatched on May 4, 1864 at the Plenty Hatching House near Hobart. The cost of the shipment was 968 pounds 2 shillings and I penny.
    Another shipment of 15,000 Brown Trout ova arrived in 1865 in Tasmania and resulted in 500 fry. The progeny of these fish were used io make widespread liberations throughout Australia
    1866
    In 1867, Victorias first stocking with Trout inadvertently occurred in Riddles Creek at a hatching house supplied by Mr J. Clark. The first sightinge were in the Deep Creek at Keiior.
    In 1868, Mr Alfred T Seal of Ballarat imported the first Redfin ova, The resultant fry were released into Youll’s Swamp, now known as Lake Wendouree.

    Enough of the history already.

    I accept the Murray Darling basin had large sporting fish (i.e. cod). An early Wangaratta Chronicle (~ 1860) reported that the King River dried up and the locals went to the pools to take the stranded fish. Whilst the article did not identify the species, it did say that, “The fish were larger than a man could handle”.

    … so where are these co-existing populations?
    In the King River, trout have co-existed with Trout-cod throughout. Octogenarian anglers in the valley caught Trout-cod when they were kids. They just hadn’t been identified as a species at the time. Today, they still co-exist from the wall at Lake William Hovell through Moyhu. The Murray Cod is also co-existing from upstream of Cheshunt downstream to the junction with the Ovens River … and a very fine cod fishery it is too! There are even a few Maquarie Perch still caught upstream of Cheshunt as well.

    … senior people from angling groups representing trout and native fish anglers are meeting to develop a system of stream classification whereby some streams will be earmarked for long term development as fisheries for native fish and others to be retained, managed and developed as trout fisheries. no closures involved, just develop some new and exciting fisheries and undo an injustic that was done over 100 years ago. the majority of trout fisheries will remain just that.

    there is not nor has there ever been a plan to shut the king river to fishing. in fact the plan is once a self sustaining population of trout cod is developed to phase in angling for them. in fact the government is about to announce the development of a pilot fishery for them in the ovens valley.

    Now, there is the news we have all been wanting to hear. Why has it been kept so quiet?

    Whilst you feel my comments are unhelpful, the rednecks of the high country who have privately maintained the trout populations of their streams, will continue to do so. I am not inciting people to civil disobedience … just telling it as it is.

    Greg Naylor

    28 January 2008 at 11:13 am

  9. thanks greg

    you are correct on the early introductions of trout to southern victoria. while some were introduced elswhere initially there wasn’t a lot of success. in the murray darling basin the first successful introductions were the 1870’s in victoria. broadscale stocking expanded in the 1880’s.

    to give you an idea of what sorts of places please read this extract from an omeo newspaper article:

    In the early days the rivers and creeks around Omeo were stocked with bream, cod and perch; the streams were so clear and limpid that the fish could be seen in hundreds, disporting themselves in the many huge waterholes, most of which have ceased to exist. Even in the Livingstone Creek, when it was a pretty green-banked stream, in a waterhole which existed just in front of the township, it is recorded that a 13 pound cod was once caught, besides numbers of smaller weight.

    i too accept that trout were introduced and provide good fishing. but in the mdb all we did was replace the native fishery with a trout fishery, overall no real gain at the expense of the environment. as to economic advantages would we now replace barramundi with trout if we could? no way. and trout cod rival barra as a sportsfish while macquarie perch are rated one of the finest table fish in the country.

    yes there are some radical people in the green movement, but if we all adopt a moderate approach those views are ignored by the powers that be. most people are moderate in their views and are entirely comfortable in maintaining trout fisheries. all that is requested is that there is some balance and that some upland streams are returned to the native fish and developed as tourist attractions in a ‘win win’ situation.

    in hindsight it could be argued that for the most part we would have been better off without trout in the m-d basin. its a different situation in the snowy or tassie, new zealand etc. but thats hindsight, we have to look at whats best for the future.

    so i and the majority of people that support native fish are quite comfortable with many trout fisheries staying as they are and being improved. what we dont accept is 100% of upland streams being managed exclusively for trout.

    will

    will trueman

    28 January 2008 at 12:01 pm

  10. i too know a lot of octogenarians in your part of the world and they tell quite a different story. in fact i know a few ninety year olds. the story goes that the cod and bream were well upstream of william hovell. one octogenarian talks about how his grandfather told him how the cod and bream vanished up there after trout were introduced, and were scarce above whitfield in his lifetime.

    trout cod had virtually vanished from the ovens system by the 60’s. those that are there now are the result of ten years of stocking. and i wouldn’t call odd captures of macquarie perch a co-existance. in the past we never gave the native fish a chance to co-exist with trout because we just kept stocking the latter without giving them a chance to really co-exist. i dont blame everything on trout, and i am hopeful with sensible management that we can develop mixed fisheries for trout and native fish.

    the discussions on stream classification are well publicised. similarly there has been pr on the fact that the trout cod which have been stocked intially for conservation will be developed into recreational fisheries. the ovens valley is in the box seat for this. as far as the rednecks and their streams there were country people that objected to having trout put in them last century. the streams belong to all of us and its only fair that a few be returned to the natives.

    you might be telling it like it is, but its fuel for the radical greens.

    think about it.

    will

    will trueman

    28 January 2008 at 12:21 pm

  11. The part played in the demise of upland native species by introduced salmonoids is accepted by all but those with a vested in retaining the dominance of upland australian waters by introduced species.
    The unauthorised stocking of any fish species is not civil disobedience, its a criminal offence.
    Luckily we have highly qualified and vastly experianced people like Will Trueman helping prevent the demise of our magnificent upland native species that have been displaced by invasive introduced species like trout.
    Some, like trout guide Scott McPherson (quoted in the article) have seen the bigger picture. Scott is working with VrFish on compromise solutions. Denying the impacts of trout doesn,t help arriving at a solution where both trout and upland natives can have sustainable fisheries.

    Floyd Selby

    28 January 2008 at 6:13 pm

  12. Good work Will!
    I love fishing, be it for trout, perch, cod or mullet.
    I totally agree that we need to protect our natives. We need to protect the environment, and try to enjoy the great waterways which our grandfathers were lucky to experience.
    To the trout enthusiasts, wouldn’t you rather fish for 15 pound cod than 1 pound trout?? I am sure that would challenge the best of our fly fishers.

    Damien

    28 January 2008 at 10:01 pm

  13. Greg, there is a whole community behind NOT erradicating trout, as you have clearly pointed out there is a flourishing business involved in trout that cannot be replaced by any other native fishery.

    Its single minded people who selfishly dont think about thier own interests rather than that of a ‘community’ that rely on our quality trout fishing waters to earn a crust!

    Imagine this… heading to the Snowy Mountains to fish for native fish, I (and many others) wouldnt bother!

    And NO I wouldnt rather fish for a 15lb cod. Why? I like so many others enjoy stalking a trout, presenting the dry fly, the technique and tactics involved are far more superior and rewarding.

    Unfortunately a small group of people just dont understand this and dont see the big picture of how this could/may affect the livlihood of the community that relies on this not only for the sport but for monetary value of supporting themselves!

    Dave

    28 January 2008 at 10:45 pm

  14. The comments by “Dave” can be considered in the light of his reluctannce to identify his surname. Obviously he has some reason for this??
    As far as the big picture and economics I know of several top fishing guides who already have their advertising in motion for the lucrative O,S. market once viable upland native fisheries have been re-established. Big spending Japanese, European and American sportsfisherman will flock to our unique fishing opportunities, they won,t come here to fish for trout. Their is a potential economic boom for any region providing the chance to catch magnificent, unique and challenging natives like the bluenose cod.

    Floyd Selby

    29 January 2008 at 4:12 am

  15. It seems I have hit a raw nerve with native fish purists. Will Trueman gave me a serve on the fishnet website (click here) which generated over 50 hits to this article and the comments above.

    On the Fishnet forum, Will says this bloke was so ill informed he hadn’t heard about stream classification or proposals for rec fisheries for tc. yet he was sprooking a lot of rubbish.

    The fact is Will, very recent enquiries of the MDB native fish strategy group indicated legal fishing for trout cod was definitely not on the agenda.

    Whilst you and your ‘senior people’ may be discussing these matters right now, most of us are recreational anglers who are never exposed to the decisions of VicFish and other authorative organisations.

    I am annoyed that, whilst you carry on a reasoned discussion on this blog, you can me on the Fishnet site.

    Greg Naylor

    29 January 2008 at 5:12 am

  16. greg

    you really havent done your homework and are poorly informed.

    first the north east fisheries management plan explicitly outlines the creation of rec fisheries for trout cod. there was a public meeting, it recieved a lot of publicity, and consultation, its on webisites. its the plan for your area and you dont know about it?

    recovery plans for trout cod state that the intention is to downlist the species in the foreseeable future. talk about rec fisheries for tc in the future. dont know about them?

    the mdbc stuff is crap. i attended a seminar last year and it was stated that the first recreational fishery for tc was in the pipeline.

    as far as native fish ‘purists’ being upset you are not portraying trout fishermen in a good light. i grew up a trout fisherman, in fact a flyfisherman, and i fished the ovens valley. i’ve got emails from trout fisherman who are also annoyed by what you have put up.

    as i said right now trout and native fish anglers are working co operatively to set up a system of stream classification. i’m annoyed that people like you make the type of comments you do without doing adequate research. its the type of stuff that can derail the process.

    i think anybody reading this will see that i have tried to treat you with respect. but i have ‘canned’ you here up front.

    will

    will trueman

    29 January 2008 at 7:42 am

  17. Greg,
    As you would have noticed the crowd on the fishnet website is a small minority who are only interested in their own agenda. They take into consideration nothing but their own thoughts and wants.

    Yes it is nice to fish for native fish, but for economic sustainment the current trout streams must stay. It is estimated that around $16 million revenue is made from the trout fishing industry in Victoria alone, this will fall dramatically if trout are removed.

    If Victoria (and NSW) were to remove trout and stock natives the fishery would NEVER be as prolific and great as the northern state’s barramundi fishing and nor will any of the native fish that these idiots are wanting to introduce will fight as hard or taste as good as barramundi.

    It is not murray cod (or any other native fish), but barramundi that is our national icon and brings fishers world wide to Australia. Travel overseas and mention murray cod as an Australian sport fish, people will look at you strangely saying is that another name for barramundi.

    Take for example the idiosyncrasy of the typical fishnet forum poster, if someone posts a photo of themself catching a few native fish it becomes an all out war about how the fish is handled, it shouldn’t be photographed as it will stress the fish etc, etc, etc. Now imagine how these people will react if foreign fishers come to “their” fishery catch a few murray cod, photograph them and eat them!

    Fishnet has a tendency to become a viscous circle from a point where the forum cannot and will not be taken seriously by anyone involved in fisheries. There are a few users who only think of their own agenda, not that of a ‘community’ which unfortunately ruins what could be a good forum. If you dont believe me just take a look through the forum posts, it will illustrate this quite clearly.

    Dave

    29 January 2008 at 10:37 am

  18. Dave,
    Glad to know you are following this thread.

    I have learned a lot from the Fishnet forum about how a group of native fish fanatics operate by simply putting down any other opinion than their own.

    It is rather hard to imagine overseas tourists hiring a guide to take them out on to Lake Mulwala in a tinny overnight, to bait up with cheese of all things and wait for the big one when they could be out fly fishing our mountain streams, experiencing the Australian wilderness environment and catching a few trout.

    I do not believe my original post was misinformed or provocative. I will let readers form their own opinion as to the voracity of the arguments of all posters.

    Greg Naylor

    29 January 2008 at 11:10 am

  19. dave

    there is no plan to eradicate trout fisheries. they are here to stay. nobody is advocating their wholesale removal. the snowy is going to remain a trout fishery. full stop.

    the original mountain fisheries in victoria for trout cod and macquarie perch were just as prolific as is the barramundi fishery. in the early days they were literally caught by the ton. you clearly dont know what was here originally, but thats understandable. we are not talking about murray cod here, we are talking about trout cod and macquarie perch. as a boy i used to go dry fly fishing for trout cod in exactly the same way as i did brown trout. exactly the same. i’ve got friends from up north that are barra fishers that have caught trout cod in recent years and regard them as more powerful fighters than barra. the problem is at the moment we dont have any mountain fisheries for trout cod, so they cant be an icon.

    look everyone, here is the situation. there are negotiations go on to classify streams in north east victoria between the various groups, and everything i am hearing is that there is a hell of a lot of good will between the trout and native fish groups involved. streams will be allocative as trout, native or mixed. most trout streams will remain just that. then there is going to be public input on it. once that happens the plan can be implemented. what that means is that those trout fisheries will be permanently reserved. period. i agree with you dave about the debate, its been very counterproductive. if the streams are classified that means security for everyone involved. it means most trout fisheries will stay and some native fisheries created. there are certain high altitude creates where they will investigate controlling trout to protect endangered galaxids, but they dont get heavily fished. thats fair enough, after all they are in national parks. but many trout fisheries will be preserved in perpetuity.

    so dave thats why i have responded to this site. i dont want this one great opportunity to come up with a solution derailed. i reckon this stream classification will end all of the debate. i agree with you on the views of some. but if we get this to work appart from having some native fisheries there is going to be long term security for trout anglers. there is no plan to eliminate trout fisheries in government or from the native fish organisation. trout fisheries in general are here to stay. whats wrong with having 80% of mountain rivers for trout and 20% for native fish? why dont we all wait and see what they come up with? lets give it a chance.

    will

    will trueman

    29 January 2008 at 11:26 am

  20. Greg,
    I think you should listen to Will’s points. He actually is an expert on freshwater fish. You seem to add your comments to every little story that shows up in your neighbourhood. A bit like the old town gossip! I dont think you can speak with as much researched knowledge on freshwater streams that Will obviously can.
    I admire your enthusiasm to protect fish. I love fishing for all species including trout, and have a great deal of experience fly fishing in your region. But surely we can have a few streams in which the indigenous inhabitants of the waterways get a chance.
    I think the trout need to say “SORRY” to the indigenous fishes.
    No compensation in monetary terms, just a few land rites!

    Damien

    30 January 2008 at 5:15 am

  21. Your commentary is unhelpful, inflammatory and grossly inaccurate.

    I could go through all the errors and flaws, which really make your whole commentary one big flawed error, but Will Trueman has done that nicely.

    I simply make several points

    1) Returning several streams to upland native fish does not threaten trout fisheries as a whole, considering the vast amount of upland river habitat they (unfairly) dominate, and it is ridiculous to suggest so.

    2) Fish are often not found in trout stomachs because it is extremely well recognised in the scientific literature that they digest extremely rapidly, i.e. a few hours. And as for finding larval fish… Forget it. They digest instantly. So the number of fish recovered from trout stomach vastly, vastly “under-indicates” the level of predation. Plus the fact that in most rivers there are no or precious few upland native fish left for them to prey on.

    3) The trout fishing industry is not worth billions. Please don’t exaggerate. It’s worth a few million, but that is not a billion.

    4) trout cod in particular and Macquarie perch are actually superior to trout in sporting qualities and appearance in upland rivers. This was well recognised in the early days. They can be caught on all trout gear including wet and dry fly as readily as trout. They can and will attract anglers as readily as trout do if fisheries for them exist in a few dedicated upland river habitat. They will draw overseas anglers too. I find somebody’s comment about fishing in the great Australian wilderness ironic… yeah, the wilderness that doesn’t support any upland native fish anymore… Just the same two trout species found around the world, river after river, stream after stream… A handful of upland stream returned to upland native fish, so they can be both conserved and fish for, is only the right and just thing.

    Simon Kaminskas

    30 January 2008 at 9:51 am

  22. Comments for this post have been closed

    The original thread has been lost and it has become a whipping post for the author (me).

    A new thread has been started titled Trout cod and the King River where your comments are invited.

    Greg Naylor

    30 January 2008 at 7:51 pm


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