Swan galaxias survey
We are undertaking our annual surveys of the Swan galaxias (Galaxias fontanus). Swan galaxias are native to Tasmania. You only find them in small pockets of rivers or streams that are free of trout and other native fish. They are endangered.
Swan galaxias have a short life expectancy of around three years. They grow to a maximum length of 100mm. Most of the Swan galaxias captured during the survey ranged between 55m and 80mm.
Juvenile Swan galaxias tend to swim in open water. This makes them an easy meal for trout and other native fish. This is why you do not find strong populations where you find other fish.
During the last 10 years, low rainfall and warm temperatures have greatly reduced Swan galaxias habitat. This has had a negative effect on their numbers. We have been looking for, and assessing other sites that are free of trout and native fish for potential insurance populations.
The fragile ecosystems that many of these fish call home, need close monitoring if the Swan galaxias is to have a bright future.