Please select your home edition
Pantaenius FBW Comprehensive 728x90

More reefs for healthier fisheries in Corio Bay

by Victorian Fisheries Authority 10 Feb 21:09 UTC
Utilising local resources © Victorian Fisheries Authority

Two major fishing reef projects near Geelong are complete, creating more homes for fish and enabling recreational fishers to reap the rewards from land and sea.

Minister for Fishing and Boating Melissa Horne said the reefs will get more people fishing as part the Andrews Labor Government's $35 million investment, including $2.5 million for extra reefs in Port Phillip.

The first project has delivered three reefs at Outer Harbour, St Helens and Kirk Point, each named with help from the community.

The trio of reefs were constructed with 2,000 tonnes of basalt as a base, sourced from the nearby Cherry Creek juvenile justice facility with help from VRFish and topped with 100 tonnes of limestone. This combination provided the perfect substrate upon which to seed 400,000 native flat oysters and 10 tonnes of blue mussels.

Oysters were sourced from the Victorian Shellfish Hatchery at Queenscliff and the mussels came from a local grower, Advanced Mussel Supply. Oysters and mussels will improve water quality, create diversity in sea floor fish habitats and boost productivity for fish and invertebrates.

The second project was led by The Nature Conservancy with an investment from Target One Million and restored shellfish reefs at 9ft Bank in the Geelong Arm by deploying 100 cubic metres of recycled shells from restaurants and the seafood industry.

It also included new reefs at Wilson Spit in Geelong Arm, Margaret's Reef near St Kilda and in Dromana Bay. These 3.5 hectares of new reefs were seeded with approximately 3 million oysters and 6 tonnes of blue mussels, which will attract a diversity of fish and aquatic life.

The Outer Harbour reef will be called Moolap, that being the Indigenous name of Point Henry. Moolap recognises the cultural significance of the sea country to Wadawurrung people and means a place of men fishing with spears.

The reef at St Helens is Merv's Reef, named after the late Merv McGuire, former head of Future Fish and VRFish. It is ideal for land-based fishers because it's 62 metres from the break wall.

At Kirk Point the reef will be called Wilson Reef, honouring Geelong fishing writer and identity Geoff Wilson.

The project was delivered by the Victorian Fishing Authority. Reef locations were selected following consultation with key recreational fishing stakeholders and Geelong fishing club members. The new reefs are accessible, known for good fishing and away from areas important for other marine uses, such as shipping channels and spoil grounds.

For more information visit


Minister for Fishing and Boating Melissa Horne: "Projects like these not only allow for more fishing, it brings people to regional communities, supporting local jobs."

"These new reefs will improve fishing opportunities for thousands of Victorians on the doorstep of the state's second biggest city and are a welcome addition following the end of commercial net fishing in Corio Bay in 2018."

Member for Bellarine Lisa Neville: "The rocky reefs will have benefits for both boat and land-based fishers, with Merv's Reef within casting distance of the rock wall at St Helens."

Member for Geelong Christine Couzens: "By improving water quality and diversity in sea floor habitats, the completion of these projects represents a major win for recreational fishers in Geelong."

Member for Lara John Eren: "By providing homes for fish, these reefs will promote fishing at Corio Bay and get more people fishing more often."

Member for South Barwon Darren Cheeseman: "These reefs will give even more local fishers the opportunity to chase key species like snapper, whiting and calamari, making Corio Bay's fishing even better."

Related Articles

Free Murray Codference back on in Shepparton
Codference is a free event funded by the State Government's $35 million investment Recreational fishers rejoice as an action packed and informative day is planned for the return of the free Murray Codference in April this year. Posted on 25 Feb
More Cod fishing on the way in Victoria's West
Popular Murray cod fisheries in these basins included Taylors Lake and Lake Charlegrark Recreational fishers are being encouraged to have their say on a proposal to improve freshwater fishing opportunities by removing the three-month closed season for Murray cod in all waters of the Wimmera and Millicent basins, excluding the Wimmera River. Posted on 23 Feb
Fishers hooked as golden tag hits major milestone
Regional Victoria is experiencing a fishing tourism boom Regional Victoria is experiencing a fishing tourism boom, with the Golden Tag competition racking up a huge $100,000 in prizemoney paid to winners since being expanded and relaunched. Posted on 7 Feb
Helping hand for Macquarie Perch in the Northeast
Macquarie Perch are a threatened species in northeast Victoria Macquarie perch populations in northeast Victoria are getting a helping hand with the release of 55,000 fingerlings into four waterways. Posted on 6 Feb
New slot limit for Black Bream in Gippsland Lakes
A range of improvements in the now finalised plan A new slot limit for black bream will come into effect from April 1 as part of a range of improvements in the now finalised Gippsland Lakes Recreational Fishery Plan. Posted on 1 Feb
Seven men arrested for Mornington abalone haul
Mornington Officers observed two men allegedly taking abalone at Fossil Beach Seven men allegedly involved in an abalone poaching syndicate were arrested by Fisheries Officers and Victoria Police last week. Posted on 28 Jan
Illegal calamari catch sees boat forfeited
Hillside man prohibited from fishing for six months A Hillside man who took 23 calamari off Queenscliff and broke water safety regulations has been convicted, prohibited from fishing for six months, fined $1200 and had his boat and fishing equipment forfeited. Posted on 22 Jan
13FISH call makes the difference
As car and kayak seized leaving the Tambo River near Metung The 13 FISH reporting hotline continues to ensure fishing in Victoria will be sustainable for years to come, after a call by a member of the public led to two people having their vehicle, kayak and fishing equipment seized. Posted on 8 Jan
Inaugaural Aussie Bass stocking for Latrobe River
20,000 fingerlings received as part of a plan to further improve freshwater fishing in Gippsland The Latrobe River has been stocked with Australian bass for the first time receiving 20,000 fingerlings as part of a plan to further improve freshwater fishing in Gippsland. Posted on 17 Dec 2020
Countdown is on for Murray Cod season opening
Freshwater fishers are counting down the days Freshwater fishers are counting down the days until the opening of the recreational fishing season for Murray cod on 1 December. Posted on 27 Nov 2020
Sea Sure 2020 - SHOCK-WBV - FOOTERMarina Exchange FOOTER 1Highfield Boats - FBW - FOOTER