2500 new trout swimming in Ovens River

CATCH AND RELEASE: Rod Smith is hoping anglers will have fun catching the trout, but also encourages them to release them back into the river to allow for spawning next winter, while (right) local angler Brian Eddy was thrilled to finally have some trout back in the Ovens River.

TROUT numbers in the Ovens River have been boosted with 2500 trout being released into the depleted waterway at the beginning of the month.

The stretch of river between Harrietville and Porepunkah received 1000 rainbow trout from Fisheries State Hatchery and 1500 brown trout from the Mountain Fresh Trout Farm in Harrietville on September 29 and October 1.

Keen angler and Harrietville local Brian Eddy played a big role in preparing an application for the restocking program and asked anglers to “catch and release” the fish.

Mr Eddy said the restocking was a one-off to help aid in the recovery of trout numbers in the Ovens River after fires and floods decimated the trout population.

“The stocking is a seeding to help the river recover and it is important that the fish are given a chance to spawn next winter so they can regenerate wild bred trout for the future,” he said.

“The Australian Trout Foundation Inc (ATF) want to encourage anglers to practice ‘catch and release’ even though the current fishing regulations for the Ovens River allow a bag or possession limit of five trout, of which only two may exceed 35cm in length.

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