Federal, state government approach to restoring native fish populations in the Murray-Darling Basin through Native Fish Recovery Strategy

Silver perch. Photo: MDBA.
Silver perch. Photo: MDBA.

A collaborative approach by the federal government and some state governments will look to protect and restore native fish populations in the Murray-Darling Basin.

The Native Fish Recovery Strategy is being developed by the federal government and the Basin's state governments, and a draft version is now open for public feedback.

The strategy has been created with input from Basin states, First Nations people, aquatic ecology experts, and Basin community members.

Information and ideas about existing efforts to support native fish and future initiatives were gathered through workshops and advisory meetings to create a fresh, coordinated approach to recovery.

According to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA), the federal government, in working with the Basin state governments, has pledged $5 million to the strategy.

"Over the past few years native fish in the Basin have faced tough conditions including widespread drought, reduced water availability and more recently, the effects of intense bushfires," the MDBA's Get Involved website said.

"Water managers know that native fish are one part of a larger living, connected system and work needs to be done to protect these species."

The release of the draft strategy gives people across the Basin another opportunity to help shape the outcomes, actions and priorities needed to help the recovery of native fish.

"For this strategy to succeed it is vital that the priorities and needs of all stakeholders are reflected within this strategy," the MDBA said.

"This feedback will be incorporated into the final strategy in coming weeks, which will be released in May 2020.

"We aim to build enduring partnerships with communities to design and implement on-ground actions for our native fish."

Online submissions are open from March 10 to April 6.

View the draft strategy at https://getinvolved.mdba.gov.au/native-fish-strategy or call the engagement hotline on 1800 230 067 for more information.