8 October, 2021
Week long competition hooks invasive pest
OVER 1,500 noxious Tilapia have been reeled in by over 480 competitors, during the week long Tilapia Tournament held at Warrina Lakes, Innisfail.
Environmental portfolio holder, Jeff Baines said the event was a huge success, providing a great school holiday activity that saw families and the community come together to enjoy.
“It was great to see whole families, including children, parent and grandparents, come down to Warrina Lakes, enjoy the outdoors and do something positive for our environment.
“Whilst down at the lake, you could hear the cheers across the water as competitors supported each other with each invasive fish that was reeled in.
“I had numerous people come up to me and say how happy they were with the competition and what a positive impact they felt they were making to the environment,” said Councillor Baines.
“Talking with many of the young kids, it was also great to also see how much they had learnt about the devastating impact these pests have on the environment and the awareness that is generated from the overall competition.
“The Warrina Lakes Tilapia Tournament can officially be named the largest competition of its kind in Australia with 481 participants, which even on the last day of fishing saw over 120 tilapia pulled out of the lake.
“There were 26 prizes given out in total, including bonus prizes, daily prizes, category prizes and the two major prizes for the biggest fish and most caught overall. A lucky door raffle, kindly donated by OzFish and BCF, was also drawn on Sunday which was won by one lucky young man and his brother.
“I would like to thank all of our sponsors, who really pitched in to support this community building event and enabled Council to provide so many great prizes.
“The tilapia caught will now go to the Johnston River Community Gardens and will be made into fertiliser.”
Present of the final day of fishing was also the Community Gardens, MAMs, Department of Environment and Science, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and Tangaroa Blue who held stalls and ran activities with attendees.
The Cassowary Coast Regional Council would like to thank all the sponsors involved, including OzFish, Soils First, Coastal Marine and Outdoors, Innisfail Game Fishing Club, BCF Innisfail and Cairns, River’n’Reef Tackle and Bait Innisfail, Kurrimine Beach Fishing Club, Manitto’s Auto Centre and Johnstone River Community Gardens.
Council would also like to thank all the competitors that put their lines in the water to take positives steps in reducing this pest from our waterways. We hope to see everyone back in 2022 for an even bigger and better event.