Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Eungella Dam Attracts World Championships Again

Nominations are now open for Mackay Area Fish Stocking Association (MAFSA) Inc’s premier fundraising event at Eungella Dam, where both Junior and Senior anglers compete for the title of World Champion Angler in their respective divisions.

The event, the INDT 2023 World Sooty Championship will be held over two days on the 29th and 30th April, and is expected to attract more than 100 anglers to experience the wonderful Sooty Grunter fishing in Eungella Dam.

The dam is regularly stocked by MAFSA with funds generated by the Queensland Stocked Impoundment Permit ( SIP) scheme. MAFSA also raises funds locally to supplement stocking of native sooty grunter in the dam.

2023 will be the 18th time the tournament has been held. It attracts local anglers as well as from centres such as Mt Isa, Townsville, Dalby, Brisbane and anglers from interstate have also fished the tournament. Many anglers make it a family weekend at the dam and campers not in the event are always interested in seeing the quality of the fish caught in the tournament.

All scoring fish (minimum 300mm) are returned to the control area in on board tanks and after measuring for scoring purposes the fish are held in an above ground shaded swimming pool and released back into the dam at the end of each of the three sessions. Poor condition fish are disqualified and MAFSA emphasises the proper handling of the fish to ensure the tournament has a minimum impact on the fish numbers in the dam.

MAFSA Inc. holds the event in partnership with Sunwater and is supported by many local sponsors including INDT whose MD Craig Birkett is a regular competitor and often features among the top placings.

“MAFSA has created awesome freshwater fisheries in the Mackay area which regularly attract anglers from all over Australia and several anglers from Japan and the USA have enjoyed these fisheries,” Mr Birkett said.

“I am  proud to be associated with the volunteers of MAFSA  who work tirelessly to bring world class fishing experiences to Mackay’s dams for the benefit of locals and tourists alike.

“My Company has for several years supported the event as naming rights sponsor in recognition of the importance of MAFSA’s efforts” Mr Birkett said.

Long-time sponsors like Tackleworld Mackay, Reef Marine and Mackay Regional Council continue to support the tournament recognising it as a valuable fundraiser which enables MAFSA to enhance the “liveability” of the region and attract visitors to our area.

MAFSA Chairman Tim Swann said, “This is our major fundraiser for the year and during the tournament we will also be releasing more sooty grunter fingerlings into Eungella dam.

“The dam is already the premier Sooty Grunter fishery in Queensland and we will continue to enhance its reputation as a high quality Sooty Grunter fishery capable of attracting anglers from far and wide.

“I urge anglers to nominate early to avoid missing out as numbers are capped at 120 to compete for the quality prizes and trophies on offer,” he said.

Nominations and catering packages can be booked online at TryBooking and search “MAFSA” in the buy section.

“We look forward to another successful INDT 2023 World Sooty Championship tournament and welcoming regular and new competitors to the event,” Mr Swann concluded.

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