Mur­ray cod sea­son to be­gin

The Free Press (Corowa) - - CLASSIES (03) -

The Mur­ray cod fish­ing sea­son of­fi­cially opens on Thurs­day, De­cem­ber 1 this year and will be fol­lowed on De­cem­ber 11 by Vic­to­ria’s first ever con­fer­ence on the species with an­glers.

Fish­eries Vic­to­ria Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Travis Dowl­ing said the Mur­ray cod was an icon species that con­tin­ued to grow in pop­u­lar­ity amongst sport­fish­ers us­ing lures and tra­di­tional fish­ers us­ing bait.

“Our free ‘Cod­fer­ence’ in Shep­par­ton recog­nises the in­ter­est in all facets of the species rang­ing from their re­cov­ery in north­ern Vic­to­rian wa­ters, the slot lim­its in­tro­duced in 2014 and our stock­ing ef­forts in re­cent years to fur­ther im­prove their abun­dance,” Mr Dowl­ing said.

“The ‘Cod­fer­ence’ is one part of the State Gov­ern­ment’s $46 mil­lion Tar­get One Mil­lion plan for recre­ational fish­ing, which aims to get more peo­ple fish­ing more of­ten and in­crease par­tic­i­pa­tion to one mil­lion by 2020.

“Pre­sen­ta­tion top­ics at the ‘Cod­fer­ence’ will in­clude record stock­ing of the species with help from recre­ational fish­ing li­cence fees, the im­por­tance of habi­tat, flows and fish­ways, indige­nous con­nec­tions to cod, han­dling tips for re­turn­ing them safely and the lat­est news on the carp virus.”

Mr Dowl­ing said there would also be cod ex­perts like Rod Macken­zie and Rod Har­ri­son, who would talk about how to catch re­ally big cod con­sis­tently and how fish­ing for the species has changed over the years.

The ‘Cod­fer­ence’ is at the East­bank Con­fer­ence Cen­tre, 70 Wels­ford St, from 9.30am un­til 3.30pm on De­cem­ber 11.

Reg­is­ter for free by email­ing im­prov­ing. fish­ing@ecodev.vic.gov.au or call­ing 03 8392 6876.

More de­tail on the event is avail­able at www.vic.gov.au/cod­fer­ence

Mr Dowl­ing re­minded an­glers that the slot limit for Mur­ray cod is 55cm to 75cm and the bag limit is 2 in lakes and 1 in rivers.

“This sea­son we are en­cour­ag­ing an­glers to care for their cod, par­tic­u­larly if they are go­ing to re­lease them be­cause they are un­der­size, over­size or un­wanted,” he said.

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