Fish stocking

Fish  stocking involves producing fish fry or fingerlings and releasing them into NSW  waters.

Fish stocking can provide many benefits such as creating new fisheries  or augmenting existing ones and is recognised for its importance to the  community in terms of quality recreational fishing, conservation outcomes,  employment and subsequent economic benefits that have grown in response to the  activity over many years.

Fish stocking must be conducted responsibly to conserve and protect our unique biodiversity.

Freshwater fish stocking

Fish stocking supports some of our most important inland fisheries including the  Australian bass fishery in Glenbawn dam, Murray cod and golden perch fisheries  in impoundments such as Copeton, Pindari, Burrinjuck and Blowering dams and our  trout fisheries in the Snowy Mountains, Southern Highlands and Central and New  England tablelands.

Find out more about freshwater fish stocking in lakes and impoundments to enhance fish production or as part of the Dollar for Dollar Native Fish Stocking Program.

See fish stocking records from 2005/2006 to 2012/2013 (PDF, 223.78 KB).

2016-2017 freshwater fish stocking plan

Community feedback closing date Friday 13 May 2016

Saltwater fish stocking

The NSW Marine Fish Stocking Program commenced in 2014 in selected estuaries to enhance recreational fishing opportunities. About four million juvenile Eastern king prawns are stocked annually during the summer into coastal lakes as part of the program.

Stocking of prawns generally occurs in early December each year, and by mid-January the prawns have grown to a size at which they can be captured. The stocked population reaches its peak biomass by late February and March.

Plans are also underway to initiate Mulloway stockings in the future, which will involve collecting wild caught broodstock and acclimating the fish to hatchery conditions before being ready to spawn.

All stockings are in line with the NSW Marine Fish Stocking Fishery Management Strategy, which ensures that fishing stocking is conducted responsibly while minimising environmental risk.

The marine fish stocking fishery management strategy (PDF, 4421.57 KB) and associated environmental impact statement for marine stocking was prepared in line with the NSW Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

For more information on marine fish stocking email fisheries.enhancement@dpi.nsw.gov.au.

Fish hatcheries

Fish hatcheries run by DPI are found across the state, supplying fish for various stocking programs.

Find water monitoring data for Gaden Trout Hatchery and L.P. Dutton Trout Hatchery.

DPI provides a directory of fish hatcheries in NSW supplying fish for stocking


Gaden Trout Hatchery, on the Thredbo River, 10 km north-west of Jindabyne, is one of Australia’s main centres for breeding and rearing cold water sport fish. Four species, rainbow trout, brown trout, brook trout, and Atlantic salmon are produced by DPI and stocked into the dams and river systems of our trout fisheries in the snowy mountains, southern highlands, the central tablelands and New England areas. Currently operations are being funded by the Recreational Fishing Trusts. This has enabled the department’s fish stocking program to continue to provide many benefits to the local environment and community.

Visiting the hatchery

Visitors can view and sometimes partake in feeding of the big fish that come to the surface in some of the hatchery’s brood stock ponds, watch a 10 minute introduction video that outlines the hatchery’s purpose and operations, and go for a walk around the grounds with one of the experienced hatchery staff. Coin operated barbeques and picnic shelters are available. Fishing is not permitted at the hatchery.


Open times Contact details

Visitors’ Centre Open 10am - 4pm daily, guided tours run daily at 10am and 2pm only. Bookings are essential.

Self Guided Tours available on selected days only - phone for availability.

Closed ANZAC Day, Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

Visitors’ Centre opening times and tours are subject to change due to operational requirements.

Gaden Trout Hatchery
224 Gaden Road
Jindabyne, NSW 2627
Phone: 02 6451 3400
Latitude: -36.376791
Longitude: 148.577042

Entry cost

Admission feesCost per person (AUD)
Adult$10.00
Child (ages 4 - 14 years)$7.00
Concession (Seniors/Pension card to be shown)$7.00
Family (Based on 2 adults and 2 children)$28.00
Self guiding (group tour rates available for 20 people or more)
Not available every day
$5.00

Dutton Trout Hatchery is located on the Serpentine River, just 75km east of Armidale and 125km west of Coffs Harbour.

It is one of two NSW Government facilities for breeding and rearing premier cold water sport fish. Dutton produces Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout. The fish are bred from hatchery brood stock and grown out to fry, when they are released into selected cold water public rivers and lakes.

Visiting the hatchery

The hatchery is open to visitors daily from 8.30am to 3.30pm (except Good Friday and Chritmas Day).

A small admission fee applies.

Contact details

Point Lookout Road

Ebor NSW 2453

Phone: 6775 9139

The aquaculture facilities at the Port Stephens Fisheries Centre produce Australian Bass as part of the fish stocking program.

Breeding programs have been conducted at the Narrandera Fisheries Centre since the 1960s. Native stock is bred and released to enhance recreational fishing in NSW and for conservation purposes.