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. 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.

Releasing fish into public waters

All fish releases into public waters such as rivers, creeks and impoundments requires a fish stocking permit. Find out more about releasing fish into public waters.

Map of marine and freshwater fish stocking records

Click on individual site markers for historical stocking information.

Impoundments Fish Stocking Plan

Freshwater fish stocking in lakes and impoundments to enhance fish populations.

Two Dollars for One Dollar Native Fish Stocking Program

The Two Dollars for One Dollar Native Fish Stocking Program provides two dollars in funds for every one dollar in funds offered by the community to stock native fish (Murray Cod, Golden Perch, Australian Bass) into public waters to enhance recreational fishing opportunities. Find out more about the Two Dollars for One Dollar Native Fish Stocking Program.

Fish hatcheries

Fish hatcheries run by the department 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.

The department 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)
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

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.

Fishery Management Strategy

All freshwater fish stocking is conducted in accord with the NSW Freshwater Fish Stocking Fishery Management Strategy. The strategy ensures that the activity is conducted with appropriate environmental controls and generates quality recreational fishing outcomes for the people of NSW. For more information on freshwater fish stocking email

Saltwater fish stocking

The department has a Marine Fish Stocking Program which is aimed at boosting fish stocks for recreational fishers in NSW.

Species stocked recently include Dusky Flathead, Mulloway and Yellowtail Kingfish.

In 2021, the first ever large-scale stocking of Dusky Flathead was undertaken in NSW with the stocking of 75,000 juvenile fish into three South Coast systems - St Georges Basin, Lake Conjola and Burrill Lake. These fish were produced for the department by Narooma Aquaculture, with technical advice provided by the department's Port Stephens Fisheries Institute. Plans are underway to do more Dusky Flathead stockings given the recent breeding success of this highly popular sportfish.

Likewise, the Mulloway stocking project aims to improve recreational fishing opportunities for this iconic sportfish species with more stocking planned in key estuary systems.

The Kingfish project is in the final stages of a three-year study to assess the suitability of this species  for future small-scale stockings as a fisheries enhancement tool. Kingfish released in previous stocking events are being monitored to assess the effectiveness of the stockings.

Below is a snapshot on what fish have been stocked in recent years:

YearLocationSpeciesNumber Stocked
2020Botany BayKingfish6,500
2020Lake MacquarieKingfish2,600
2020Lake ConjolaDusky Flathead1,850
2021St Georges BasinDusky Flathead47,000
2021Lake ConjolaDusky Flathead14,000
2021Burrill LakeDusky Flathead14,000
2021Georges RiverMulloway80,000
2021Hastings RiverMulloway10,000
2022St Georges BasinDusky Flathead14,000
2022Lake ConjolaDusky Flathead16,000
2022Burrill LakeDusky Flathead12,000
2022Lake MacquarieDusky Flathead23,200
2022Camden Haven RiverDusky Flathead11,300
2022Georges RiverMulloway30,000
2022Lake MacquarieMulloway18,700
2022Hastings RiverMulloway10,200
2023Lake MacquarieDusky Flathead2,100
2023St Georges BasinDusky Flathead27,900
2023Lake ConjolaDusky Flathead11,450
2023Burrill LakeDusky Flathead12,900
2023Georges RiverMulloway67,200
2023Lake MacquarieMulloway22,600
2023Hastings RiverMulloway35,600
2024Burrill LakeDusky Flathead11,300
2024St Georges BasinDusky Flathead10,100

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 or Call (02) 44247423.