What is the aim of the project?

    The proposed Native Fish Recovery Strategy aims to protect and restore native fish populations of the Basin over the long-term.

    It will supplement and build on existing native fish programs across the Basin for a coordinated approach to fish recovery and will be developed and implemented collaboratively with the Basin state governments, First Nations and the wider community.

    The Strategy will outline a long term plan to protect native fish in the Basin and aims to ensure:
    • healthy and diverse native fish populations are supported and are resilient to extreme events
    • communities are involved in on-ground actions
    • critical native fish habitats, including flows, are protected and effectively managed
    • native fish research and activities are resourced to develop Basin-scale knowledge
    • monitoring is complementary and provides long-term insights and supports decision-making
    Basin stakeholders have provided input into the framework through targeted workshops with over 100 participants and early surveys on the strategy framework. 

    Broader community now has the opportunity to provide feedback.

    What is the background of this project?

    Native fish in the Murray-Darling Basin are under increasing pressure. 

    The 2018-19 fish death events in the Lower Darling served as a visible warning of the significant pressure currently experienced by native fish. 

    Over the long-term, estimates indicate that fish numbers have declined to 10% of their natural populations– a stark reminder that governments need to do more to support our native fish. We need a coordinated approach to recover our native fish for future generations. 

    Five million dollars has been committed for the development and initial implementation of a Native Fish Recovery Strategy to do this.

    What has happened since the fish deaths in 2019?

    Since the mass fish deaths in the Lower Darling in December 2018–January 2019, Basin governments have actioned a range of new activities to protect our iconic native fish. 

    Following an Independent Assessment of the 2018–19 fish deaths in the Lower Darling, chaired by Professor Rob Vertessy, the Australian Government has committed over $88 million to a suite of measures to protect native fish.

    How do I make a submission?

    Between 10 March and 14 April 2020, you can make a submission by completing the online survey on this site (including uploading an attachment if you wish to).

    If you're having trouble with the survey, download and answer the template for providing feedback directly and send your responses to NFRS@mdbe.gov.au 

    What information is being sought from submissions in March 2020?

    The development of the Native Fish Recovery Strategy is one component of a Basin-wide response to significant pressure that native fish populations and habits are experiencing in the Murray-Darling Basin.

    The Strategy will establish a long term plan to guide and support the ongoing coordinated management and recovery of native fish populations.  It is important for this Strategy to be founded on robust evidence and expert advice.  However, it is just as important that communities and individuals can see the Basin-wide picture and play a part in the implementation of activities under the Strategy.  It is this ongoing role and the development of positive relationships that will be important and why we are seeking broad input and feedback on the Strategy.

    We really want to hear:
    • Does the draft Strategy capture the importance of native fish to you and your community?
    • Do you think the current status of native fish in the Basin is described accurately?
    • Have all key threats to native fish been identified?
    • What do you think are the key threats in your area?
    • How does the Strategy’s vision and intended outcomes align with your thoughts?
    • To what extent do you agree with the immediate actions?
    • Are there any significant gaps or additional actions needed?
    • Does the Strategy provide a clear indication of where investment opportunities and needs are for fish?
    • Are the investment areas sound?
    • Do you think this Strategy will benefit native fish in the Basin?

    What happens after I submit?

    Each submission, except for any attachment supplied in confidence, will be published on this website shortly after we receive it, and will remain there indefinitely as a public document.

    We will consider each submission and how it may change or influence the final strategy, but will not be able to respond to you directly. 

    What information will be removed (redacted) from my submission?

    Before being published on this site, any personal information (e.g. home and email address, signatures, phone/ mobile numbers), defamatory statements, abusive language, commercially sensitive information or statements about third parties (and the like) will be redacted if they are present in your submission.

    Only your name will be published with your submission, if you have given your permission for it to be included.

    Can I make a part of my submission confidential?

    We prefer to receive complete submissions that are able to be published for all to see and potentially comment on. 

    However, if you wish to provide information that is confidential, please clearly mark it as 'IN CONFIDENCE' and include the reason why. We may ask for a summary of this information to be published instead.

    Are there any other ways I can provide a submission?

    We prefer that you use our online survey as this will assist us in considering all the submissions we receive and enabling more effective and efficient analysis.

    However, you can upload a pre-prepared submission to the website using the 'choose file' button below (you will need to navigate to your file and upload it).

    Alternatively, submissions via email can be sent to NFRS@mdba.gov.au or via post to:
    Murray-Darling Basin Authority
    Native Fish Recovery Strategy - Submissions
    GPO BOX 1801
    Canberra City
    ACT 2601

    What about copyright?

    Copyright in submissions sent to the MDBA resides with the author(s).

    Do not send us material for which you are not the copyright owner, such as newspaper articles (instead please reference or link to this material in your submission).

    Technical tips

    Do not submit password protected files.

    Track changes, editing marks, hidden text and internal links should be removed from submissions.

    To minimise linking problems, type the full web addresses (for example, http://www.referred-website.com/folder/file-name.html).