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Brown Trout Released Into the Avon River

2 November 2012

Media Release

Brown Trout Released Into the Avon River

It’s been 10 years since Tony O’Neill last spotted trout in the river which runs through his Fendalton property, so tomorrow he and wife Rosalie will release around 400 juvenile brown trout into the Avon River.

The O’Neill’s have gifted a donation to Fish and Game North Canterbury for a sponsored release of brown trout in the hope that it will result in the freshwater species returning to the river to spawn.

Trout numbers in the stream have been in decline over the past 15-20 years: “I remember when I was a kid you could see and fish for trout in all the city streams, but now you just don’t see many anymore,” recalls Dirk Barr, North Canterbury Fish and Game’s hatchery manager.

It is hoped that releases like this will raise awareness of these depleted fisheries, and Rod Cullinane, General Manager of North Canterbury Fish and Game says “it is great to see local residents like Tony and Rosalie concerned enough that they are prepared to reach into their own pocket”.

He says these initiatives are an important opportunity to increase the numbers of trout spawning in the headwaters of the Avon and Heathcote rivers.

Mr Cullinane also stated that once rejuvenated “These freshwater fisheries will give increased opportunities for local anglers, especially children.” By early next year they hope to see the first of the 400 yearling ‘browns’ return as adults to spawn.

This is the second such release in the past month, with local businessman Theo Giesen sponsoring a release of over 800 trout and liberating them into the Wairarapa Stream late in October.


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