Trout and Char of the World

17: The Introduced Trout and Char of Australia and New Zealand

Matt Jarvis, Gerard Closs, Michel Dedual, Lance Dorsey, Wayne Fulton, Rasmus Gabrielsson, Mark Lintermans, and Morgan Trotter

doi: https://doi.org/10.47886/9781934874547.ch17

Following European colonization, Australia and New Zealand saw the introduction of many exotic species throughout the 19th century (Thomson 1922; McDowall 1994). During this period, known as the “acclimatization movement,” countless plants and animals were translocated between hemispheres for various reasons, from perceived aesthetic benefits and colonist’s nostalgia for species from their homelands to scientific curiosity and the hopes of establishing recreational and food resources (Dunlap 1997; Osborne 2000). The work to introduce fish, especially salmonids, to Australasia was undertaken with particular zeal and represented a significant proportion of the total effort of the acclimatization movement.

Following their establishment, introduced trout and char have come to support significant and highly valued recreational fisheries in both Australia and New Zealand, attracting anglers from all over the world. However, the negative effects of introduced salmonids on native fishes throughout the region, particularly species in the family Galaxiidae, have been severe, and predation on juveniles of other taxa is also likely. In this chapter, we summarize the history of trout and char introductions to New Zealand and Australia, their current status and distributions, the value and management of the fisheries they now support, and the negative effects of these introductions on native species. Because of differing introduction times and management strategies between the two countries, this chapter is structured by country, then by species.