February 21, 2023

In August 2022 the Corangamite Catchment Management Authority (CMA) placed 32 Fish Hotel and Root Ball structures into the Lower Curdies River, between Curdievale and the top of the estuary at Peterborough.  

The fish hotels are built from locally sourced eucalyptus and are designed to provide shelter and food for fish. With the new hotels now settled into the Curdies River, it is time to survey the fish hotels and see if they are being used by fish. How is this done? With Electrofishing. 

Dion Iervasi from Austral Research and Consulting will conduct electrofishing at various sites along the lower Curdies River.  

From his boat, Dion will put an electrical charge into the water which will stun any fish that are using the fish hotels as habitat. The fish will be counted, weighed, and measured.  

The data collected will be compared with the numbers and types of fish using the same part of the river with when the first survey was conducted back in June 2021 before the fish hotels were installed. It is hoped the survey data will show an increase in numbers and types of fish and more diversity of sizes (indicating a mix of ages). 

Corangamite CMA project officer Gene Gardiner said, “Electrofishing allows us to get a fuller picture of what is happening in the “hotels” and how they are being used. We hope to see increased numbers of fish in the areas where the structures are located.”  

Upcoming event  

Members of the public are invited to come to the Curdievale boat ramp on Saturday 4th March between 10am and midday to see a demonstration of the electrofishing process and hear a talk from Dion about fish living in the Curdies River. 

Those interested in attending the event can register at: Lower Curdies Electrofishing Survey - Corangamite Catchment Management Authority ( 

This project is supported by Corangamite CMA, through funding from the Australian Government’s Fisheries Habitat Restoration Program. 

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