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Plan to Rebound the Gippsland Lakes

VRFish is thrilled with the release of the draft Gippsland Lakes Recovery Plan which outlines the suggested next steps to rebound the beloved fishery back to a premier fishing destination.

Recreational fishers are leading the charge for management reforms for the Gippsland Lakes fishery and we welcome the partnership with Government and community leaders to make fishing better.

VRFish advocated for a formal fish recovery plan for the Gippsland Lakes fishery to address factors suppressing the natural recruitment of our estuarine fish species, including habitat improvement and mitigating saline intrusion, and implementing a restocking program.

In 2019, VRFish conducted a survey with 683 recreational fishers which demonstrated the active role fishers wanted to play in the recovery of their fishery.

Respondents’ highest priorities were restoring fish habitat, establishing a fish stocking program for black bream, dusky flathead and estuary perch, followed by reviewing recreational fishing management and improving environmental flows.

Our survey showed there is strong support by recreational fishers to improve the quality of their fishing experience by reducing the daily bag limit for black bream and to introduce a β€˜slot limit’ to protect large black bream.

Recreational fishers are passionate conservationists and know that to have a high-quality fishery, it is vital to look after the environment where our fish live.

Recreational fishers are encouraged to contribute their views and feedback on the draft plan as part of the public consultation process, including making contact with VRFish via [email protected]

Now that the commercial netting buy-back has been completed as of 1 April 2020, we expect the quality of fishing to be vastly improved in the Lakes and the recovery plan can now plot a new and vibrant path for the fishery.

The draft plan is available at vfa.vic.gov.au/gippslandlakes and public consultation closes 28 October 2020.

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