Today we have been following up on the deaths of many trophy sized brown and rainbow trout, which appears to be the result of remedial works being undertaken on Big Brook Dam, near Pemberton.
We understand that as a result of rapidly lowering water levels in Big Brook Dam to undertake excavation work to repair the dam embankment and pipes, a number of trophy trout were trapped in drying pools.
Thanks to the quick thinking of some keen anglers a number of these prized fish were able to be saved.
Our southwest freshwater fisheries are already under significant pressure from a drying climate and we understand work on our water catchment dams are essential.
However we believe better consultation and early knowledge of planned work on our dams would allow us to take action to significantly reduce the risk of fish deaths. These fish are a valuable asset that has been paid for by recreational fishers (through licence fees) and when work on our dams is likely to threaten our assets it is only reasonable we are consulted about it.
We are currently investigating the issue further, and will work with the relevant authorities with a view to providing a solution that will reduce any impacts on fish and fish habitat in the future.
We would like to thank the guys who brought this to our attention and worked quickly to limit the number of fish deaths. As the eyes and ears on the water across WA, it’s great to see rec fishers willing to stand up for these fish.
Photo credit: Simon Holland