May 072014

By Greg Wallis (pseudechis) at YouTube

The Barramundi or Giant Perch (Lates calcarifer) is an iconic fish from the freshwater billabongs, estuaries and coastline of northern Australia. Growing to 180cm and 60kg in size, these fish are a formidable predator.

Hatchling Barramundi are almost entirely males and spend their first year around mangroves and floodplain lagoons before moving further upstream into freshwater. At around 3 — 5 years of age and 60 — 80 cms the fish change sex and become female and move downstream to the tidal river mouths to breed.

Generally speaking it’s not a good idea to swim in natural waterways where Barramundi occur. Because they migrate from upstream freshwater areas down to the mouths of the rivers and back again, if you see Barramundi in a swimming hole it means that there are no substantial barriers downstream impeding their movement up from the coast, which also means Saltwater Crocodiles will have no problems in also accessing the area!

Barramundi are highly prized by fisherman both for their eating and fighting qualities. They are a very important food source for Aboriginal people and are regularly depicted in bark paintings and rock art.

For more information on Barramundi see the Fishes of Australia website…

CAAB Taxon Code: 37310006


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