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Feral fish reach Perth rivers

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Environmentalists are calling it an alien invasion.


Giant feral fish, all the way from South America, have been discovered in metropolitan lakes and rivers.

Weighing in at nearly a kilo, the Pearl Cichlid fish – captured in a Beechboro lake - joins reports fast-growing goldfish (up to 2kg), and big silver perch and golden perch all caught in WA fresh waters over the past 12 months.

Murdoch University’s fish health unit representative Dr Stephen Beatty said there had been a 44 per cent increase in introduced freshwater fish in South West over the past decade.

He said these introduced species now outnumbered native species in the region.

“These fish can enter the river system and are being dumped from aquariums into catchment lakes,” he said.

“They are thriving in these nutrient rich water bodies and can grow much larger than the native fish.

“They compete with native species, and that just adds to the existing threats associated with habitat and water quality decline to put natives under serious pressure.”

Dr Beatty said a dedicated community campaign was underway in the South West to tackle the problem of feral fish in these waterways, resulting in more than 10,000 feral fish being removed from rivers over the past year.

Nick Sas, The West Australian June 27, 2012, 2:26 pm

Edited by Bundy1
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How can they say the Americans thrive in the nutrient rich water and then two paragraphs down say the natives are suffering from declining water quality? I'm not saying people dumping fish isn't a problem but the article is very bias. And who the hell dumps expensive fish into the native waters anyway? They need their heads read.

Rant over

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