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Fish release for kids day cancelled

Monday 17 October 2011, 7:48PM

By Fish and Game NZ

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SOUTHLAND

Southland Fish & Game is very disappointed that the release of 200 trout and salmon into the Te Anau boat harbour for the annual children’s fishing event this labour weekend will have to be cancelled.

The bacterial disease recently identified in Southland lamprey and a single trout from an isolated Otago hatchery means that it would be irresponsible for Fish & Game to transport fish from other regions, says senior Southland Fish & Game officer Zane Moss.

“Until we know more about the extent of the disease and the threat associated with this bacterium we cannot take any risks.

“We do know that the bacterium is waterborne, so any transfer of fish and water risks transferring the bacterium to somewhere it might not currently be present.

“I must stress that this is very much a precautionary step and we’re sure that Fish & Game will be able to continue to provide fish for such popular events in the future.”

Mr Moss points out that the children’s event has not been cancelled and there will still be plenty of opportunities for them to catch a fish.

“Fortunately, there’s still fishing for the kids such as at Lake Henry, McGregor’s Pond and the mouth of the Upukerora River, as well as other activities that the organisers have added.”

Fish & Game says the discovery of the bacteria serves as an important reminder of the need for all river and lake users to check, clean and dry their gear when moving between waterways, just as anglers have become accustomed to doing to prevent the further spread of didymo.

For more information contact: Southland Fish & Game senior officer Zane Moss 021-244-5384