Fishes of the Murray-Darling Basin: an Introductory Guide

Fishes of the Murray-Darling Basin: an Introductory Guide

Knowledge of the ecology of Murray-Darling Basin fish species has grown rapidly since the 1980s but prior to this publication there was no single handbook available on the fish fauna and the threats they face.


This book includes an introduction to the Basin, the major threats to native fish, and the actions that are being taken to restore fish populations. Photographs and descriptions are provided of the 46 native and 11 alien fish species found in the Basin, along with notes on the biology and habitat, distribution and abundance, and potential threats for each species, and key references for further reading. A distribution map of museum or agency records for each species is included. The conservation status of each of the 26 threatened species is presented under state/territory and national listings.

Implications for native fish

The book provides easy to read information that allows people to accurately identify species, their distribution and habitats. The book promotes awareness of fish conservation and highlights the major threats to native fish populations including:

  • flow regulation
  • Habitat degradation
  • Lowered water quality
  • Barriers to movement
  • Alien species
  • Diseases
  • Exploitation (commercial and recreational)
  • Translocation and stocking

The digital copy of this book is available at no charge, to ensure that as many people as possible can learn about the amazing fish that live in the Basin.


Lintermans, M. (2007). Fishes of the Murray-Darling Basin: an introductory guide. MDBC Publication No. 03/06. Murray-Darling Basin Commission, Canberra.

A hard copy of this book is available here.

Humphries, P. and Walker, K. (2013). Ecology of Australian Freshwater Fishes. CSIRO, Victoria.

Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. and Allen, M.(2002). Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia.W#estern Australian Museum, Perth.

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