Fish Species in Marlborough

Last Modified: 19-1-2019 22:00

A ray glides through shallow water in Umungata Bay, Queen Charlotte Sound
A ray glides through shallow water in Umungata Bay, Queen Charlotte Sound

With  slightly over 1,800km or around 20% of New Zealand's coastline, and several lakes, Marlborough provides a habitat for a wide range of fish species.

Marine Fish Species

The sheltered waters of the Marlborough Sounds provide an ideal habitat for many species of fish, including a number of commercially important ones. Blue cod and snapper are perhaps the most important. Gurnard and kingfish are some of the other commercial species present.

In the shallow bays of the sounds, stingrays are common, and the ubiquitous spotties Notolabrus celidotus  can be found throughout the Sounds.

Kawhai Arripis trutta, red cod Pseudophycis bachus and rig can all be found off the east coast.

Freshwater Fish Species

Brown and rainbow trout and salmon have been introduced to various rivers and lakes in Marlborough. Trout can be found in the Wairau, Lake Argyle, Goulter, Fish Lake and Lake Sedgemere of the Tarndale Lakes.

Shortfin eels are widespread throughout the region, and are even found in urban drainage channels in Blenheim.

Lake Chalice provides a habitat Galaxius brevipinnis endemic to the lake and found nowhere else in the world.

The Tarndale Bully Gobiomorphus alpinus is another fish unique to Marlborough found only in the Tarndale lakes in the Molesworth region.

Whitebait (juveniles of various Galaxiid species) are found in rivers around the region.

Common Bullies are widespread.

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