Chairperson's Summary #66
10:05 am MEETING OPEN - Julia Menzies – Roundtable Chair
Welcome and apologies.
Acknowledgement of the Traditional Owners of all the lands on which we are meeting.
Previous Roundtable actions/ Follow up.
No existing outstanding Actions
NEW ACTIONS – Arising from Meeting #66 –25th March 2022
Katherine Grech to request Ron Lewis to provide a list of species he would aspire to be bred at Snobs Creek.
Julia to share Adrian and Anthony’s emails with each other.
Michelle to send Brian Wright an email with some dot points on the progress of the flathead project.
VFA Update: Brian Mottram and Chris Padovani
Future meetings will be aimed at face-to-face but a “hybrid” meeting option will be available to allow more people to attend virtually.
Fish stocking and production- native production has continued at Snobs Creek. 148,000 Macquarie perch stocked, the best fish production result ever for this species.
Murray cod numbers are good but there is a shortage of Golden perch. The VFA are growing additional Golden perch at Arcadia to help with production and stocking numbers.
We are very close to 10 million fish- be great to celebrate this sometime soon.
Events and engagement- some events have been held recently: Codference, Vic Fish Kids, Go Fish Nagambie. A big thanks to everyone that has helped create these events.
WIRF continues to grow, lots happening in this space. Keen to bring new leaders on- if you know any … please encourage them to join the Facebook Group.
The World Recreational Fishing Conference - a combined effort from the VFA will be held February 2023. A lot happening in this space soon and will keep in touch with this group.
The VFA are working with DELWP to create a list of species that we would like to see bred at Snobs Creek.
New Action: Katherine Grech reach to contact Ron Lewis to give list of species that you think are needed.
The King Fish Reef (16 reef modules) is scheduled to be deployed on the 15th April- a 2 day process. Big thank you to Ben from VRFish and David from Future Fish for their advocacy and support with the project.
Anthony McGrath has done a terrific job with the $600,000 infrastructure improvement project. By sourcing co-funding for the project, Anthony was able to upgrade 8 fishing platforms (target was 3) and install 10 fish cleaning tables across 6 sites.
Minister Horne is celebrating the completion of the $27 million buyout of commercial netting in the Port Phillip Bay on 1 April 2022.
VFA intend to undertake a review of the kingfish bag and size limits
The VFA have developed a 5-year implementation plan to fully deliver the 53 recommendations contained in the plan.
Better Boating Update: Katherine Grech
Point Richards - Additional 50+ car-trailer parks have been completed. April– July 2022: Installation of a rock wall to semi-enclosure ramp to minimise seagrass impact.
Rhyll- Car park stage 1 upgrade is complete. February 2022 – August: Installation of longer ramps, second jetty and pontoon and replacing the existing jetty
Mordialloc- Replacement of Governor Road Boat Ramp pontoons complete. Accessible pontoon to facilitate better access to water complete. Stage 2 April-June 2022: car park will be reconfigured.
Queenscliff- Formalised overflow car park complete. March – June 2022. Installation of Marine-side ramp lane, pontoons, improved traffic flows and kayak launch.
Hastings- March 2022: Dredging, May 2022: Second pontoon installation.
- Lake Bullen Merri - construction to commence March 2022.Underwater retaining wall to minimise future impacts of sedimentation, new centrally located pontoon, new concrete ramps.
- North Arm - Stage 1 complete. Stage 2 commences May 2022.
- Warrnambool - Construction June - September 2022.
- Warnga Basin - Navaid upgraded 2021. Ramp and car park construction April - July 2022.
- Lake Bellfield - Minor boat ramp works due for completionMay 2022.
- North East River Ramps - Improving access on the Mitta and Murray River. Works scheduled to commence in October however high-water levels have delayed start.
- Maribyrnong- new site identified- undertaking feasibility assessment with Port of Melbourne.
- Lake Wartook
- St Leonards - need for improved parking arrangements. Certain weather conditions make the ramp difficult to use and at tims dangerous.
- Goulburn River - Concept plan for ramp downstream of Weir at Shepperton. Stakeholder/ community consultation anticipated to commence April 21.
Other Projects in the Pipeline:
- Mitta River- restore access at Pigs Point
- Murray River- Restore access at 3 locations
- Ovens River- Upgrade access at 3 locations
- Goulburn River- Restore and Upgrade access at 5 locations
- Anthony’s Nose/ Dromana- sand management options
- St Leonards, Cannons Creek and Tooradin- concept planning for future upgrades
- Werribee South, Lang Lang, Avalon, Kirk Point, Limerburners, Inverloch, Cowes, Mahers Landing, Cape Conran- detailed design underway
It takes a good 18 months to come up with a design, progress that to consultation, to then be able to finalise and issue for constructions.
WIRF Update: Julia Menzies
WIRF Leadership Workshop up in Eildon last weekend (19-20 March). Was great to meet face to face and sit down and spend a weekend together. We had a fantastic presenter- Suz Chadwick talked to us about public speaking, giving confidence on social media and other media.
Did some strategy work to help develop the new strategy and breakout sessions to build on new ideas.
Went on a tour of the Snobs Hatchery.
Native Fish Australia Update: Ron Lewis
We attended the official opening day of Arcadia- highly recommend visiting.
Discussions with La Trobe University of a new purpose-built hatchery that they will prepare for the NFA- the building we are in now will be demolished and the new hatchery will be built. Completed a new strategic relationship strategy with the University
Had our Native Fish challenge in February- over 70 anglers and 15 juniors- very successful and great support and sponsorship.
In the process of preparing a new strategic review to ensure the NFA moves forward in the proper design.
Current hatchery had major problems- thieves took the main feed in to the area, left us without power. This problem is now fixed.
Building beside the hatchery is now habited by us, now we can improve on our smaller native and Macquarie perch breeding program.
Supporting the small native fish hatchery at Snobs.
Attended the launch of the habitat material that was being distributed into the Maribyrnong River. Concerned whether the oxygen profile has been taken at these sites- possible that there is very little oxygen. Taylor Hunt- something that we were careful to consider, we’ve had 3 assessments of the sites with a 4th assessment upcoming.
Fishcare Update: Sarah Van Stokrom
To date (this financial year): 177 educational clinics. All these clinics have reached about 2,500 people.
Redefine and communicate our mission.
Trout Fest coming up at Eildon- 11 volunteers lined up for that day plus staff.
Consistently adding to our video library- this has been well received by schools.
New projects: We're working closely with our land councils and indigenous groups. Reaching out and developing joint projects. Conference in Warrnambool next week.
Happy to be getting out and about and delivering clinics.
Take up of the junior fishing cards has been good, would love to work more with the VFA to promote these.
VRFishUpdate: Ben Scullin and Rob Loats
Top issues- Port Phillip by-catch issue. King George trawl fishery issue.
Greens Lake Corop- we’re looking at the Water Act and how it can better recognise rec fishing and the benefits that brings.
Water Act- one of its main purpose is to maximise community involvement. There needs to be some further tightening of the legislation that recognises the recreational, social economic contribution from recreational water. We will be advocating for a change.
Piers and Jetties Access- are our piers and jetties important for rec fishing access?
Camping on Crown land- naturallyvic website (waiting to go live)- best practice advice for camping on water frontage and crown land.
VRFish change agenda complete- 5 resolutions for change.
Board meeting next week.
Talking with Sport and Rec Vic to look at member retention post covid survey.
ATF Update: NA as both representatives were apologies.
Angler Access Discussion: All
On water access- achieved all the on-water access points we wanted to.
Have been adding River Access signs along the Steavenson River- have had issues with the removal of a significant number of signs by unknown parties.
Question- Ben Scullin: Do statutory requirements for access already exist? Yes- a licence does not mean exclusive access, public access exists, however until DELWP insert a clause in both the grazing licence and an unused rd reserve licence whereby the licence holder must maintain an unlocked swinging gate, recreational anglers will continue to encounter access issues. As DELWP is the land manager, not the VFA, members are encouraged to report any instances where public access is blocked by a licence holder to DELWP.
Goulburn River track improvements: Access to the Goulburn River is now easier and safer for recreational fishers and their families thanks to fishing licensing fees and the State Government’s $35 million Go Fishing Victoria plan.
Track improvements allow 2WD’s to access more fishing spots that were previously only accessible to 4WD’s.
Improved tracks to the Goulburn River include Parks Victoria sites near Shepparton and Murchison at:
- Shepparton Weir
- Andersons Road
- Campbells Bend
- Hutchinson’s Bend
- Browns Road
Locations where the VFA is currently working on improved rec fisher access/use:
- Blackburn Lake (recreational fishing is currently prohibited by Whitehorse City Council)
- Edwards Lake (recreational fishing is currently prohibited by Darebin City Council)
- Melton Reservoir (VFA stock the reservoir, however public access is difficult)
- Djerriwarrh Reservoir
There was discussion about crown land licences and access to those areas.
- We have crown water frontage which are accessible to unused road reserves which Victorians are allowed access to.
- Not everyone understands a general license means that everyone has access
- There are some license holders who prevent and discourage public access to public land and they are not held accountable by the government who looks after these licenses.
Question, Ben Scullin: Update on the “can I camp here” map? DELWP list each of the sites where camping is permitted on their website. The VFA has developed an App to also identify these sites, however the App will not be launched until there are enough campsites to warrant the App.
New Action: Julia to share Adrian and Anthony’s emails with each other to share access photos.
Questions and Close
Support for the Blue Spot Flathead - Brian Wright can report that sand flathead populations are improving. Can we put this on the next agenda? The project that was presented is underway - people are sending their frames in.
New action: Michelle to send Brian Wright an email with some dot points on the progress of the Flathead project
Taylor hunt - The Freshwater update had info of the ongoing projects that are happening. The Vic Fish Stock meetings will happen soon to finalise the 2022-23 stocking plan. Renewed interest in access at Bullen Merri. Feel free to get in touch with Taylor if you want to chat more.
Meeting closed 12:35pm
Next Roundtable meeting #67 - Friday 17th June 10am
Location: 1 Spring St with option to attend virtually