Record native fish released into Bremer River

ABOUT 18,000 Mary River cod have been released into the Bremer River catchment to increase native fish populations and improve the river’s diversity.

This is the biggest release of Mary River cod into the catchment in history.

The Mary River cod is a large endemic species growing over a metre in length and as one of Australia’s most endangered fish, they are only found in a few waterways in Southeast Queensland.

They are a protected species with stocking efforts over the last 10 years focussed on increasing their distribution to new waterways to establish new conservation populations.

The Bremer was historically filled with Brisbane River cod, which were driven to extinction by the early settlers of the greater Brisbane region in the early 1900s.

Staff from Hinternoosa Hatchery and the Somerset and Wivenhoe Fish Stocking Association were amongst a big team of volunteers that assisted in the release across strategic locations with good habitat in the form of log-jams and deep pools, good riparian condition and suitable food availability.

Being such a large-bodied fish, these adult cod will contribute to the management of pest fish in the system such as tilapia and carp.

Other initiatives include removing weeds from riverbanks, restoring native vegetation, and managing urban run-off, and restoring fishways.

A 1.1 metre-high weir was identified in Woogaroo Creek in 2018 and ranked in the top 50 barriers impacting fish movement in Southeast Queensland. A fish ladder will be installed.

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