Recreational fishers in Gippsland are smiling from ear to ear thanks to the stocking of over 130,000 Australian bass into 11 lakes and rivers yesterday to further improve freshwater fishing opportunities in the years ahead.
Victorian Fisheries Authority CEO, Travis Dowling, said Australian bass are a highly regarded sportfish, native to Gippsland and Australia’s east coast, and have thrived since the annual stocking program for the species was ramped up.
“The statewide stocking program is funded by fishing licence fees and the State Government’s $35 million Target One Million plan to get more people fishing, more often, in more places,” Mr Dowling said.
Yesterday’s bass were released into these waters, with more fingerlings to be stocked soon:
- Mitchell River – 39,000
- Lake Glenmaggie– 25,000
- Blue Rock Lake – 45,000
- Avon River – 5,000
- Valencia Creek – 1,000
- Rainbow Creek – 1,000
- Thomson River – 5,000
- Cowwarr Weir – 2,000
- Tyers River – 2,000
- Traralgon Creek – 1,000
In addition, the Macalister River received 5,000 bass downstream of Lake Glenmaggie and 2,000 above.
Reports from local fishers confirm that bass stocked previously into the above listed waters have survived and grown well and are providing exciting fishing for beginners and keen fishers on lure, bait and fly.
Several of the stocked fisheries are now considered good enough to host competitions, like those in New South Wales and Queensland, which have been the envy of Victorian lure-casters for years.
Mr Dowling said Victorian fishers no longer have to travel interstate to bag a bass now that we have productive fisheries at destinations like Glenmaggie and Blue Rock.
The VFA will shortly begin stocking estuary perch fingerlings too, a close relative of Australian bass.