RECREATIONAL fishers can now again target Murray cod, with the season having opened from Friday, December 1, following the annual three month breeding closure.
NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) senior inland fisheries manager, Cameron Westaway said the native species, which is found in the Murray-Darling River system, is a prized catch as it’s the country’s largest freshwater fish.
“Every year a three month ban on taking, or attempting to take, Murray Cod in all inland waters other than Copeton Dam is put in place to protect this very important species during its breeding season,” Mr Westaway said.
“Since the closure was first introduced more than a decade ago there have been numerous reports of significant increases in Murray cod numbers.
“Murray cod numbers have been boosted through government stocking programs including the dollar for dollar native fish stocking program. Over 920,000 were released last year and similar numbers of Murray cod are planned for release this season.”
DPI director of fisheries compliance, Patrick Tully said fishers will need to adhere to Murray cod possession limits, size limits and catch and release best practice.
“A daily bag limit of two Murray Cod per person per day and a total possession limit of four will apply when fishing in any inland waters,” Mr Tully said.
“Fishers are required to release Murray Cod which are smaller than 55cm, or bigger than 75cm, with the least possible harm.”