Golden perch swims nearly 2000 km

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Golden perch are known to move about a lot to spawn and in response to changing conditions in the river (image: Martin Auldist).

A CHUBBY yellow belly has managed to swim almost 2000km along the Murray River in the past six years.

As reported in the Weekly Times and on the OzFish Unlimited website, the golden perch’s marathon efforts were discovered when it was recaptured in the Goulburn River last week after being tagged in the Murray River near Renmark in October 2010.

Scientists found the native fish had swum 1,923 kilometres in that time, and it’s still not the record!

Amazingly, scientists found nearly 1500km of the marathon swim took place in just seven months.

Arthur Rylah Institute scientist, Jarod Lyon, said: “The fish was recaptured during fish monitoring work in the Goulburn River last week”.

Mr Lyon said the fish was originally tagged below Lock 3 in the Murray River, near Overland Corner.

Our monitoring has detected this fish several times throughout its journey including visits to Yarrawonga and Lock 6 near the South Australian border,” he said.

“The fish also managed to grow by 10 cm during its marathon swim — it was 36 cm when it was tagged and is now more than 46cm in length.”

“We know these fish move about quite a lot to spawn and in response to changing conditions in the river but this is a significant distance for this species to cover.”

“The biggest recorded movement we’ve had for a golden perch is about 2000km so this fish is approaching that record.”

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