Murray Cod’s scientific name is Maccullochella peelii peelii.
Murray Cod are widespread throughout the Murray-Darling system and can be found in most of the waterways off this river. At the time of European settlement Murray Cod were the most common of the larger fish in this system. Today, however Murray Cod have dramatically decreased in numbers.
A Murray Cod’s habitat varies from small clear, rocky, upland streams to silty rivers.
Murray Cod prefer deep holes with covering like large rocks and fallen trees.
Murray Cod naturally reproduce in farm dams and are available at Narrabri Fish Farm between December and January.
Silver Perch’s scientific name is Bidyanus bidyanus.
Silver Perch were once very common throughout the warmer waters of the Murray-Darling, however these numbers have dropped in recent years due to damage to their habitat from pest fish like carp.
Silver Perch breed close to sunrise in spawning schools of 50 to 70 individuals in flooded backwaters of low gradient streams.
Silver Perch feed on weeds, green algae and small insects as well as earthworms.
Silver Perch can reach 30-40cm and 0.5 – 1.5 kg. Females can produce up to 100,000 eggs per kilo of their size.
They are available at Narrabri Fish Farm yearly between March and May.
Golden Perch’s scientific name is Macquaria ambigua.
Golden Perch also known as Yellowbelly do well in farm dams however it is unlikely that they will reproduce naturally in dams, usually only in the river system. At one time they can lay up to 200,000 eggs per kilo of their size. Golden Perch are great eating, a good fishing catch and can be stocked alongside Silver Perch. They feed off yabbies, shrimps, insects and small fish.
Golden Perch fingerling are available once or twice yearly between January and March and June and August
A Yabbies scientific name is Cherax destructor.
Yabbies are excellent eating, one of the most delicious crustaceans you will ever taste. They have a very sweet meat and the claws of the bigger ones are a favourite. Simply boil them for a few minutes in salted water.
Yabbies can breed up to 3 times per year in the right conditions, they are also a great food source for native fish.
Yabbies live to 10 years and reach a good eating size within 2 years.
Eel-tailed catfish scientific name is tandanus tandanus.
They can grow up to 90cm and weigh 6kg and live up to 15 years. They have a large head with thick fleshy lips and tubular nostrils. There skin is tough and smooth.
Eel-tailed catfish are excellent in farm dams as they breed easily late spring to mid summer. The catfish build their nest 1 to 2 weeks before spawning. If this nest is exposed by lowered water levels then it is abandoned and another is built.
Eel-tailed catfish have elaborate courtship behaviour, one parent, sometimes both will protect their eggs until after hatching.
Eel tailed catfish are considered by some to be the finest freshwater fish of all to eat, they have white flesh and an excellent, delicate flavour.