Inland Fisheries Service News
Every angler has the responsibility to leave the place they fish in the condition they found it. Whether you're in a boat, fishing from the shore or camping out at a lake or river you should not leave litter or garbage behind. The IFS participates in Clean Up Australia Day each year and always retrieves ute and trailer loads of rubbish from the small areas covered. The waste that is removed from lake side sites includes all manner of objects from food and beverage containers to car seats and building materials. Angling clubs, groups and conscientious individuals all do their bit to look after the environment that supports the recreation we all share and love by removing waste left behind by others. Don't let it be your garbage that is cleaned up by others, take it away from the sites and dispose of it thoughtfully and responsibly.
Due to the record high water levels in Arthurs Lake residents and visitors to Morass Bay have found it impossible to launch boats at the public ramp. In response to concerns from local shack owners and anglers the IFS and Hydro Tasmania responded to improve the situation. The only option available was to create a small turning and launching area at the end of Larner Parade and to install no parking signs to ensure the area is kept clear unless launching or retrieving boats. Parking is available in Nielsen Crescent, a short 50m walk from the launching area. The IFS will monitor water levels and remove the no parking signs when water levels allow. At the same time parking areas were improved at the Dam Wall boat ramp to compensate for the areas now inundated by the lake.
As part of its' 2013/2014 angling season promotion the Inland Fisheries Service is drawing a junior angler's name from the licence data base to win a prize pack for each month till April 2014. Eligible anglers are those who took out a junior licence during the 2013/2014 season, a junior licence is only $12.00 and available for anglers between 14 and 17 years of age. The prize pack includes a good quality rod, reel, lure, a sticker and drink bottle. The names drawn for the months of August and September were Aaron Wilson from Sorell and Cameron Mitchell from Newstead. We are sure both will love their new outfits and put them to good use.
Trout fishing can be daunting to the beginner, even if they have tried other forms of fishing but with the right guidance anyone can fish for trout. Once you've started trout fishing a lifetime of great recreational activity is ahead of you. That's why the Inland Fisheries Service has put together a fact sheet on tips and techniques to get the beginner or novice angler started. This new fact sheet explains where you can start and what you need to go out and catch a trout in Tasmania as well as providing tips on certain waters and what species can be encountered. Click on this link to view the fact sheet: Let's go trout fishing.
The variable weather conditions over the past few weeks have made the start of the carp season a variable and slow affair. The series of cold fronts that have been passing over the State over the past few weeks have been keeping the water temperatures in Lake Sorell below 10 Celsius with the shallow margins cooling even further over night. This has limited the opportunity to target carp but with a high water level and longer day light periods the carp team has everything in place to tackle the opportunities that are expected to begin in coming weeks. As the water has slowly warmed the transmitter implanted carp have begun to liven up moving actively around the lake with the occasional sortie into the margins just to keep IFS staff on their toes. This has been at the carp’s peril as the team has been eagerly waiting to take any of the early starters out of the game. The recently released sterile male carp appear to already settling in and are mixing and moving around the lake with the other transmitter fish.
Inland Fisheries staff visited numerous sites along the Sandy Bay Rivulet to collect native freshwater fish for educational purposes. There are 25 species of native freshwater fish inhabiting a range of streams, rivers, and lakes around Tasmania. The fish were collected using backpack electro-fishers and delivered to Lobster Haven near Wynyard where they will be on display in aquariums. On first glance of this rivulet, it appeared to be a shallow storm water drain, devoid of any life what so ever. However after walking upstream for less than a minute, it was obvious that this was not the case. Small juvenile yellow-eye mullet were caught at the mouth of the rivulet, while 200 metres further upstream a variety of small native fish were found residing among the debris. Spotted galaxias, jollytail galaxias, sandies and short-fin eels were all found throughout the Sandy Bay rivulet in healthy populations. Even further upstream towards the Parliament street park in Sandy Bay, the fish ladder which had been installed to assist in the upstream migration of these fish was observed. The “fish ladder” is constructed out of concrete and is designed to break-up the flow of water and provide resting areas for fish trying to swim upstream. Much of the public are unaware of the diverse range of native fish species residing in Tasmanian waters, and the role which the Inland Fisheries Service plays in maintaining and managing these fish, to ensure there are healthy populations around for many years to come. Jonah Yick
A recent report to the IFS has highlighted the damage caused by bait collectors looking for wattle grubs. The damage to road side trees has been reported on the roadsides between Perth and Longford. This activity is not permitted unless the collector owns the land which the trees are on. Prosecution for such activity could occur under the Crown Land Act. The IFS does not condone such bait collection and the willful destruction of trees on public land or land not owned by the collector. Such activity gives a bad name to anglers.
With a view to assist the eradication of carp from Lake Sorell, surgically or chemically sterilised male Judas carp (implanted with radio tags) were successfully released into Lake Sorell on Tuesday 15 Oct 2013. The location of each fish was monitored the following day. To our pleasant surprise they have spread with some traversing as far as 6.5 km from the point of release showing their ability to move and assimilate quickly. However, it is not known yet whether these sterilised Judas carp will behave and perform as well as the previous reproductively viable Judas carp in betraying the locations of feral carp. This will become clear over the forthcoming summer season. If they are like most other species, including humans, very little will have changed in their virility and interest in pursuing females and betraying their locations, but the risk of inadvertently contributing to breeding would be greatly reduced or eliminated. The project is undertaken in collaboration with National Centre for Marine Conservation and Resource Sustainability, UTas and is funded by the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation.
An Inland Fisheries Officer on patrol of the Craigbourne Dam area noticed a flat tray vehicle parked at the side of a road with used carpet on tray. The registration of the vehicle was taken and on return a short time later the Officer found the carpet deposited over an armco railing and on to roadside land. This location is known for rubbish dumping. The Officer then located and intercepted the vehicle being driven south of Campania. The vehicle was stopped and the driver spoken to regarding the littering offense where a number of admissions were made. The driver was issued with an infringement notice and was made to return to the site to collect his load. Inland Fisheries Officers are authorised under a range of legislation including the Litter Act 2007.
In an exciting breakthrough male carp that have been sterilised are being implanted with radio transmitters. Juvenile male carp, captured from Lake Sorell, were identified using ultrasound in trials undertaken last summer and then allowed to mature to a point where they were producing sperm in autumn. A number of fish were then either surgically or chemically sterilised. The fish were allowed to recover over winter with regular checks to monitor their condition. The warming water temperatures in spring would normally see an increase in sperm production as the fish prepare to spawn. This has allowed a check to be made to test the success of the sterilisation techniques that have been applied. Today carp that have been monitored and identified as sterile were implanted with radio transmitters containing an individual radio frequency built by Advance Telemetry Systems. The “Judas fish” will be held for a week to ensure recovery at which point they will be released back into the wilds of Lake Sorell. Over the coming months the sterile fish will be monitored alongside non sterile transmitter fish to ensure that the sterilisation process has not altered their behaviour as they will become a vital part of the strategy to catch the last female carp from the lake in coming years. The timing of this deployment has been planned to use a carp sex bias that is currently occurring in Lake Sorell where the young male carp have begun to mature yet the females appear to be a couple of years away from being able to spawn. This provides an opportunity to trial sterile/non sterile “Judas carp” side by side and assess their ability to betray the locations of wild carp in the lake. It should ensure that when the non sterile transmitter fish are removed next year that the program has method of safely tracking and following carp movements throughout the lake and enable the targeting of the last females while avoiding the risk of “Judas” males being involved in spawning events. This project is being coordinated by consulting scientist Dr Jawahar Patil, veterinary surgeon Dr Andrew Nicholson, Assoc Prof Dr John Purser and Honours student Mark Sangtain from UTAS with funding supplied by the Fisheries Research Development Corporation and the Inland Fisheries Service.