Dubbo Catches | Australian Bass and estuary perch season opens

With Murray cod being given three months off to breed, Australian bass, yellowbelly and redfin are now the chosen target species. Pictured Matt Hansen with an Australian bass.

With Murray cod being given three months off to breed, Australian bass, yellowbelly and redfin are now the chosen target species. Pictured Matt Hansen with an Australian bass.

The big Murray cod lures and baits have now been put away by all fishers except those travelling to Copeton dam, and instead traded for Australian bass, yellowbelly and redfin outfits and offerings. 

The three-month fishing closure for Australian bass and estuary perch wound up at the start of the month, allowing anglers to get back to targeting some of Australia’s great native sports fish.

Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Senior Recreational Fisheries Manager, Cameron Westaway, told Dubbo Catches the annual zero bag limit for Australian bass and estuary perch aims to protect these species during spawning.

“Over late autumn and early winter, Australian bass and estuary perch form schools and migrate to parts of estuaries with the correct salinity, to trigger spawning,” Mr Westaway said.

“When they are in these large groups they can be vulnerable to fishing, so a zero bag limit applies to these fish from 1 June to 1 September each year.”

Mr Westaway said the spawning period for Australian bass and estuary perch is finished at the end of winter, with most returning to their spring and summer feeding ground higher up in the catchment.

“From 1 September, anglers can once again take these native species, however they are reminded that strict bag limits do apply,” Mr Westaway said.

“The total bag limit of two Australian bass or estuary perch per person or a combination of both with a possession limit of four will be in place.

“Only one fish is permitted to be over 35 centimetres in length when fishing in rivers.”

Recreational fishers who are unsure of the fisheries rules should check before they go fishing. 

Information on freshwater fishing rules can be found in the NSW Recreational Freshwater Fishing Guide from DPI Fisheries offices, at fishing licence agents and bait and tackle shops, and online at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing.

Fishing laws are designed to protect, conserve and improve our fisheries resources for our future generations. 

Be up to date with rules and regulations

Fishing regulation, such as freshwater and saltwater bag and size limits, apply to help ensure healthy and sustainable fisheries for future generations.

Please make sure you visit www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/fishing-rules-and-regs

Submit a story or a fishing photo: 

matt@reddenhansen.com.au.

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