Posted on 02. Jun, 2010 in Victoria

The Brumby Labor Government has released a new report into the health of fish in Port Phillip Bay.

Minister Responsible for Fisheries Joe Helper said Port Phillip Bay: fish in our waters, provided useful, up-to-date information on the state of the fisheries in the bay and the results were good news for both recreational and commercial fishers.

”Port Phillip Bay is the largest recreational fishery in Australia and supports a commercial fishing industry worth $3.6 million per year, making it Victoria’s most important bay,” Mr Helper said.

“And the outlook is good, with stable catches predicted for the future.

“For more than 30 years Fisheries Victoria has regularly collected and analysed information on the bay’s environment, fish habitats and populations.

“This publication is the first time all our knowledge has been turned into a reader-friendly report.” 

The report highlights that Port Phillip Bay:

  • Provides 48 per cent of Victoria’s total commercial bay and inlet fisheries catch;
  • Sustains up to 25 per cent of all recreational fishing effort in Victorian waters;
  • Provides habitat to over 1000 species of marine plants and animals including 300 species of fish;
  • Is home to all of the most targeted recreational species – snapper, King George whiting and flathead; and
  • Has 3.2 million people living around its perimeter, making it one of Australia’s most densely populated catchments, yet the bay is healthier and cleaner compared to other  bays near large cities.


Fisheries Victoria executive director Anthony Hurst said the bay’s fisheries resources were well managed by both national and international standards.

“The report produced by the Department of Primary Industries’ Fisheries Victoria division is a valuable resource for a wide range of people including those who love fishing, bay users and students,” Mr Hurst said. 

“Underpinned by science, this is a great snapshot of our current understanding of the key features and mechanisms that influence the bay’s natural productivity and health.

“It also highlights how environmental factors shape the productivity of the King George whiting and snapper fisheries and describes the research activities currently underway around the bay.”

“Scientific monitoring of the bay’s fish stocks underpins our fisheries policy and management decisions to ensure fish now and for the future. 

“We have a very strong fishery that supplies Victorians with the finest seafood.”

To read the report, please click on:

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