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Fresh Water Fishing Guide and Tips

Murray River Fishing

Fishing | Bait

Freshwater fishing and Guide for the Murray River - NSW/Victoria
Recreational fishing licence fee - NSW
Recreational fishing in the Murray River - South Australia

This guide has been designed to allow all persons who fish in the South Australian section of the Murray River to be aware of the rules and regulations which are designed to promote wise stewardship of the resource together with a better understanding of this unique fishery. The rules are many and varied, but by complying with these rules we can be sure that there will be plenty of fish in the Murray River for this and future generations.

Releasing undersize fish is required by law and it means better fishing in the future. Mastery of the skills involved in successfully releasing fish is the mark of a truly expert angler.

Recycling fish involves:

Avoiding tiddlers
Similar sized fish usually move in schools.
You may need to move to find the bigger ones you really want;

Using appropriate tackle
Avoid going too light which means many "bust-offs" and tired fish. Larger hooks mean fewer small fish;

Fishing actively
This can lead to better conversion of bites to hook-ups, and more lip hooked fish, which are easier to release and more likely to survive.

Successful releases involve:

Unhooking fish while they remain in the water;

Wetting your hands
If you must hold fish, this will reduce damage to its protective slime;

Moving quickly
Fish were never designed to be out of water.

Treating hooks as expendable
Gut or gill hooked fish fare far better if the line is simply cut; and

Supporting larger fish
A hand under head and belly will minimize damage to the backbone which can otherwise lead to delayed mortality and a wasted trophy.

Angling is not cheap these days, so making the most of the fish you harvest is just common sense. With more fishers competing for the resource, your "share" of the catch may not be as large as it once was, so top quality can make up for reduced quantity. Placing fish on ice immediately after capture not only improves their eating quality and slows spoilage, it has an anaesthetic effect. Many fishers are now "spiking" their catch, or at least use a "priest" on the top of the head. Spiking disconnects the brain of the fish via insertion of a knife or spike in the centre of the head immediately behind the eyes. These methods of dispatching fish minimise stress. Fish treated this way yield better quality meat which keeps longer.

Recreational fishing is about fun, not about coming to grief in the process. Taking care when handling a shark may seem obvious, but we all need to be careful when handling any wild animals, including fish.

Make sure you:

  • Use adequate protection from sharp spines, teeth and gillcovers;
  • Wash your hands after handling fish;
  • Cook your catch

Fishing | Bait

Freshwater fishing and Guide for the Murray River - NSW/Victoria
Recreational fishing licence fee - NSW
Recreational fishing in the Murray River - South Australia

Care, needs to be taken with all forms of management of the Murray River. The prevalence and variety of native fish is an indicator of the quality of the river.


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