The Native Fish Recovery Strategy was published in late June 2020. Since then, our focus has been on implementing the Strategy’s Foundational Actions by working with our partners in the State/Territory governments. With their support, we can link into on-ground actions and community involvement.

Despite some challenges in communicating and working during this year’s COVID-19 pandemic, the good news is that the Native Fish Recovery Strategy Steering Group has recently given the green light to three areas of work which are outlined below.

– Recovery Reach Program

The Recovery Reach Program (Foundational Action 2) plays a major part in implementing the Strategy. The program aims to support on-ground actions that benefit native fish, First Nations peoples, recreational fishers and regional communities.

Four Recovery Reach projects are soon to be announced:

  1. continuing the Lower Darling Recovery Reach in NSW, supporting recovery of Murray cod and Golden perch in this important part of the Basin
  2. creating a Murray Corridor Recovery Reach focussing on wetland fish and threatened species
  3. expanding the Upper Murrumbidgee Demonstration Reach, by implementing habitat works and continuing efforts to improve community capability
  4. creating a Recovery Reach in the Condamine Headwaters in Queensland to improve habitat for the northern river Blackfish population

An important part of these projects will be the Recovery Coordinators, who will provide the link between local communities and government.

– Emergency Preparedness

We have also been working on emergency response and preparedness planing linked to the Strategy (Action 3). This is in preparation for a spring and summer that pose a number of risks to fish. The major risks have been identified by State partners and compiled by MDBA, follow this link to find out more.

– Supporting scientists calling for action

Resnagging at Bowenville Resever. Photo credit: Condamine Alliance

There have been some great scientific articles on native fish since our last update. Recently highlighted on Finterest, the article ‘Australian scientists share 30 actions we can take to save the Murray-Darling Basin’s native fish’ recognises the importance of many of the actions and outcomes identified in the Strategy. We are particularly keen to see number 24 happen!

30 actions we can take to save the Murray-Darling Basin’s native fish,
according to Australia’s top fisheries scientists

All of us who care for native fish can use this summary to support our own efforts – whether it be applying for grants, lobbying policy makers or restoring the habitats in which native fish can thrive.

The 30 actions shared here that can help restore native fish populations can be categorised into four key areas: flow management, water infrastructure, other restoration approaches, and support and engagement practices.

We will be sharing more stories as we get implementation underway, so stay in touch with Finterest for more details.

Read the full list