River bank revegetation supporting fish in heatwaves

River bank revegetation supporting fish in heatwaves

Posted: 14 February 2019

Representatives from Australian Trout Foundation, VR Fish and local fly fishing groups are liaising with North East and Goulburn Broken CMAs to monitor trout populations in creeks across the north-east and high country. This activity takes on special significance with the recent heatwave.

After January's extreme heat temperatures of around 30C were reported in sections of the lower Howqua River and parts of the Ovens River. Trout health is affected once water temperatures get above 20C.

ATF President Terry George said fishing groups recognised the importance of improving riparian (river bank) vegetation to improve water quality and temperature.

“This is why organisations such as ours have been working with the CMAs for a number of years now on a range of projects to improve the health of popular recreational fishing sites,” Mr George said. “These shrubs and trees provide valuable shelter and help keep the water cooler for all fish and wildlife. Where this work has been done, we’re less likely to see stressed fish as there are cool, deeper pools for them to move to.”

Anglers can help by not targeting fish during extremes of weather. Please see VR Fish’s & ATF’s Helping Trout in Hot Weather brochure at:

https://www.vrfish.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/VRFish_Trout_Posterweb.pdf  for more information or ATF’s Facebook page.

Fish deaths should be reported to the EPA Hotline on 1300 372 842. Details can also be emailed to info@atfonline.com.au.

Goulburn Broken and North East CMAs are continuing to work with urban and rural water authorities the EPA, fishers and other agencies to monitor water conditions across the catchment.

Grants for recreational fishing groups to carry out revegetation works are available through the Victorian Government’s Angler Riparian Partnership Program, Recreational Fishing Licence Trust and other funding programs as they become available.  Contact North East or Goulburn Broken CMAs for more information.

Information on river and stream flows can be accessed via the Bureau of Meteorology’s website www.bom.gov.au

This article reproduced from NECMA media release 31st Jan