CATCH A FRESHWATER CRAY THIS WINTER AS SEASON OPENS

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CATCH A FRESHWATER CRAY THIS WINTER AS SEASON OPENS

Post by fishingvic » Mon May 27, 2024 11:32 am

Media release


Monday 27 May 2024

CATCH A FRESHWATER CRAY THIS WINTER AS SEASON OPENS

Recreational fishers can once again set their sights on catching the much-loved freshwater Murray spiny crayfish when the three-month open season begins north of the Great Dividing Range on 1 June.

Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA) CEO Travis Dowling said there are many popular spots in northern and north-east Victoria where crays can be targeted, primarily by boat-based fishers, using labelled hoop nets or even just a piece of meat on a length of string.

"If you’re new to freshwater cray fishing, it’s a great activity to try with the kids, you can do it in some beautiful settings and you don’t need a heap of gear to get started,” Mr Dowling said.

“It could be a family camping trip at Lake Eildon or one of our iconic rivers like the Goulburn, Kiewa or Ovens and if you have some luck crays are a delicious dinner cooked over the campfire.

“Many generations of fishers have grown up catching crays from a tinny each winter and we want to see that tradition continuing for future generations. A big part of that will be work we’re doing at our new Snobs Creek Conservation Hatchery to grow craylings to boost wild populations.”

VFA Fisheries Officers will be patrolling hotspots this winter, with a particular focus on the handling and measuring of spiny crays to ensure they’re within the legal-size range of between 10cm to 12cm.

Tatura-based Supervising Fisheries Officer Daniel Gleeson said the measurements needed to be taken of the main body shell, known as the carapace length, defined as being measured from the rear of the eye socket to the near end of the shell before the tail.

“Knowing how to measure your cray helps us keep the fishery in good shape, so we’ll be out helping fishers ensure they’re doing it the right way and we’ll have plenty of our free Murray spiny crayfish measures to make that even easier,” he said.

“Another thing we’ll be helping educate fishers on is the correct way to handle a cray to allow it to be measured. We often see anglers not placing the measure in the rear of the eye socket, not measuring to the rear of the carapace or placing the measure alongside the cray, which makes it hard to get an accurate measurement.”

“The legal range or slot limit, is important because it protects those large breeding crayfish that will produce the next generation of craylings as well as the younger crays that haven’t had a chance to grow up a bit.”

You can grab a free Recreational Fishing Guide from your local tackle shop, download the free VicFishing app or head to vfa.vic.gov.au/fishingguide for more information on the bag limit of two crays, the statewide possession limit of four per person at any one time and permitted equipment.

Media contact: Joel Peterson, 0436 623 647
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