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Reintroduction plan for the Purple-spotted Gudgeon in the southern Murray-Darling Basin

The Southern Purple-spotted Gudgeon is a small, colourful freshwater fish with a distinct genetic conservation unit in the southern Murray–Darling Basin. The species was feared extinct, until it was rediscovered in 2002 in the Lower Murray. The wild site has since dried owing to dramatic and rapid water level declines from the combined effects of heavy water use and prolonged drought across the MDB. Fortunately, fish were rescued from the site and these form the basis of a last resort captive breeding program. With the guidance of this document and support of stakeholders, a reintroduction program aims to re establish the former wild site, create self-sustaining populations at other nearby sites, and develop backup refuge populations in isolated dams and wetlands.