Pemberton Trout Festival – breaking trout stocking attendance records in just its second year

Thanks to a buzzing crowd of around 500 mums, dads and excited kids along with stunning weather, the second edition of Pemberton Trout Festival went down as our biggest family-friendly trout stocking event to date!  

Taking place at Big Brook Dam foreshore and picnic area on Sunday, 5 November, with the unique backdrop of giant Karri trees, hundreds of smaller rainbow and brown trout fry, mid-sized yearlings and larger broodstocks more than 50cm in length were gently released into the crystal-clear water to celebrate our South-West freshwater fishery.  

Thanks to the dedicated team at DPIRD’s Pemberton Hatchery Centre – which can be seen in the video below – the healthy batch of trout were bred and reared by their team of experts then transported using their new and improved trout stocking trailer and vehicle from just up the road before making a splash into the wild.  

With more than $300,000 spent on improving DPIRD’s latest stocking vehicles, trailer and tanks, they are now capable of better regulating and monitoring the tanks’ water oxygen levels and temperatures, allowing the fish to be transported in a healthier state to each freshwater stocking location throughout the South-West.  

Included in the day’s festivities were free fishing clinics and fly-fishing tutorials led by fishing experts from the Western Australian Trout and Freshwater Angling Association (WATFAA), with scores of kids and even adults dabbling in learning the fine craft of fly casting.  

How’s this for a Pemberton Trout Festival turnout! A big Recfishwest thanks to the hundreds of mums, dads and kids who got hands on for the trout release.

Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland said, “It was clear from the big smiles how much the freshwater fishery means to our South-West communities. Fishing for trout and redfin while enjoying the benefits of getting out into nature in our beautiful South-West is a priceless experience that is readily accessible to anglers of all abilities.  

“That’s why Recfishwest will continue to work hard to create more places for people to fish for freshwater species in safe, accessible and family-oriented fishing locations. We firmly believe our freshwater fishery can and should be expanded to deliver even more pleasure and benefits to the WA community.”  

Recfishwest CEO DR Andrew Rowland and DPIRD’s Andrew Beer pictured with more than one hundred rainbow trout fry, which are now swimming freely in Big Brook Dam.

Returning bigger and better for its second year, the Pemberton Trout Festival was a collaboration between DPIRD’s Pemberton Trout Hatchery, Daiwa, Healthway, the Pemberton Visitor Centre and Shire of Manjimup. 

A big Recfishwest thanks to the Australian Trout Foundation, Southern Forests Freshwater Angling Club and Western Australian Trout and Freshwater Angling Association for their support, along with the hundreds of families who came down and rolled up their sleeves.  

Click here to see the numbers and locations of where all trout were stocked in our South-West throughout 2023!

Check out pictures below to see if you were snapped while the trout made a splash!  

Big thanks to Petula Holland from SFFAC and Mike Beanland for supplying the fantastic drone shots in the video above.

 

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