Murray Cod

Murray cod

Scientific name

Maccullochella peelii

Characteristics

Murray Cod are a member of the family Percichthyidae and have a relatively large, elongate and deep body. They have small eyes and a short snout, which has a distinct concave profile. The mouth is large with a protruding lower jaw. Murray Cod possess a cream to olive green colour with dark grey to greenish blotches over the head and body. The ventral surface (belly) is generally white in colour. These cod are voracious feeders and predators. Their diet consists of fish, crustaceans, water birds, frogs, turtles and terrestrial animals such as mice and snakes.

Size

Murray Cod reach a maximum size of about 1.8 m and 113 kg.

Distribution

Murray Cod, also referred to as cod or codfish, were once abundant throughout the Murray-Darling river system, but overfishing and environmental changes have drastically reduced its numbers. The species has been selectively stocked in other river systems in NSW, Victoria and Western Australia, but has generally failed to establish itself in those areas. Murray Cod generally prefer slow flowing, turbid water in streams and rivers, favouring deeper water around boulders, undercut banks, overhanging vegetation and logs. Small numbers are still present in the Nepean River and Yarra River.

Confusing species

Similar to the Mary River Cod, Eastern Cod and Trout Cod.

Fishing tips

Anglers troll and cast large lures or use baits such as yabbies, worms and freshwater mussels when fishing for Murray Cod.

Fishing rules

Watch

Nesting Murray Cod

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