Estuary Perch, Macquaria colonorum (Gunther, 1863)
The species has also been called the Brackish Water Perch, Estuarine Perch and Gippsland Perch.
As its standard name implies, the Estuary Perch is usually found in coastal lakes and rivers. It is commonly confused with the Australian Bass.
The Estuary Perch is greyish above, silvery on the sides and white below. Its fins are darker than the body colour. The species looks similar to the Australian Bass but has a concave dorsal head profile rather than the straight dorsal head profile of the Australian Bass.
It is usually found in coastal lakes and rivers.
The Estuary Perch is endemic to Australia, occurring in coastal drainages and estuarine waters from northern New South Wales around the south east coast to eastern South Australia. It is also recorded from northern Tasmania.
The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.
Life history cycle
Adults occur in coastal drainages of south-eastern Australia from the Richmond River, NSW (28º53´S) to the Murray River, SA (139ºE). They are catadromous, generally inhabiting estuaries and tidal reaches of rivers and they move to estuary mouths to spawn during winter.
- Allen, G.R. 1989. Freshwater Fishes of Australia. T.F.H. Publications. Pp. 240.
- Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. & M. Allen. 2002. Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia. Western Australian Museum. Pp. 394.
- Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & G.R. Allen. 2006. Fishes. In Beesley, P.L. & A. Wells. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Volume 35. ABRS & CSIRO Publishing: Australia. parts 1-3, pages 1-2178.
- Harris, J.H. & S.J. Rowland in McDowall, R.M. 1996. Freshwater Fishes of South-Eastern Australia. Reed Books. Pp. 247.