There is certainly something about fishing in freshwater that once you have given it a go will get under your skin and have you going back time and again to give it another shot.
Trout and redfin perch make up the majority of our freshwater fishing experience here in the west and is mostly limited to the southwest corner of the state. The trout fishery is primarily maintained as what is called a “put and take” fishery. This refers to the fish being bred and reared in a hatchery and then “put” into dams and rivers for anglers to “take”. We have two types of trout, the most common is the rainbow trout, and the other is not stocked as heavily and is considered the prize species of the two and is the brown trout.
Redfin perch were released back in the late 1800s and have been here ever since. Redfin are not found in all waterways but the waterways that do have them are very popular locations to fish as they are very tasty to eat and offer a great by-catch when chasing trout.
Trout stocking takes place every year to replenish popular freshwater fishing rivers and dams. Trout are stocked in three discrete age classes. The biggest amount stocked is the fry. These fish are about three to five centimetres long and in most years the quantity is about 450,000 fish. These fish will take a couple of years to grow to legal size. The next size of fish released is the yearlings. These fish are from 8 to 12 months old which will range in size from about 20 to 25cm in length. These fish will become legal size in the year of release or the next year. The third type of fish released is the ex brood stock, or the old breeding fish.
These are used for a year or two for their eggs and sperm and then replaced. Brood stock stockings, while very low, are big fish and are prized captures by those that manage to land them.
Not all suitable waters are stocked with trout. Water catchment dams used for supplying drinking water are not allowed to be used for fishing.
Rivers of high conservation value are also not stocked. One particular river is simply not stocked so that there can be a reference point for unstocked waters if we ever need to use it for any sort of analysis. This river is the Shannon River and should not be fished at all by anyone.
Freshwater fishing in WA requires you to hold a freshwater angling licence and has its own set of rules and regulations. The great news is freshwater fishing is now open all year round.
Each year approximately 10,000 people give freshwater fishing a go in WA. If you have not given freshwater fishing a go then maybe you should get out there and see what these 10,000 anglers are getting out there and experiencing.
If you are keen to try your luck at freshwater fishing, the first set of trout have been released. Here is a list of stocked waterways for 2021 to help you narrow down the most suitable location for a family outing, a holiday camping trip or maybe just a day trip.
|Serpentine River (Under SW Highway Bridge)||17500|
|Serpentine River (Dirk Brook)||2000|
|Logue Brook Dam||2000|
|Falls Brook (Harvey Dam)||4000|
|Mcknoes Brook (Upper McKnoes)||3500|
|Nanga Brook (Nanga)||22000|
|Collie River (Collie River high)||17500|
|Below Wellington Dam (Collie River low)||17500|
|Blackwood River (Carlotta Brook 3 QA with TC)||6000|
|Blackwood River (Nannup Brook)||5000|
|Blackwood River (St Johns Brook 2)||6500|
|Blackwood River (St John Barrabup)||13000|
|Hesters Brook (Upper Hesters Brook)||6500|
|Donnelly River (Palings Road)||3500|
|Donnelly River (Damper Gully Brook)||3500|
|Donnelly River (Donnell River (Scatter Road))||3500|
|Donnelly River (Barlee Brook)||13000|
|Donnelly River (Beedelup Brook)||6500|
|Donnelly River (Record Brook)||3500|
|Warren River (Lower Smith Brook)||3500|
|Warren River (multiple locations)||13000|
|Warren River (Dombakup Brook)||6500|
|Warren River (Quinninup Brook)||3500|
|Warren River (Treen)||13000|
|Warren River (Moons crossing)||12000|
|Warren River (Collins Crossing)||5000|
|Warren River (Lower Eastbrook)||6000|
|King River (Upper King River Albany)||6500|
|Collie River Gorge||2000|
|Logue Brook Dam||1000|
|Glen Mervyn Dam||200|
|Big Brook Dam||1600|
Ex Brood Rainbow
|Big Brook Dam||150|
|Logue Brook Dam||100|
|Warren and Lefroy||150|
|Held for fishing comp releases in 2022||250|
Ex Brood Brown
|Big Brook Dam||30|
|Logue Brook Dam||50|
|Warren and Lefroy||20|
|Held for fishing comp releases in 2022||150|
|Collie River Gorge||800|
|Logue Brook Dam||400|