A BARRAMUNDI worth $1 million and another 75 worth $10,000 will be tagged and released into Top End waters with the corresponding cash prizes awarded to those who catch them as part of a fishing campaign to attract more tourists to the Territory.
Anyone who registers for the Million Dollar Fish competition online will be eligible to win the prize money if they catch a tagged fish released across the Top End between October 1, 2015 and February 29, 2016.
Sponsors CrownBet will provide three quarters of the cash pool with Tourism NT to cough up about $250,000 of the total 1.75 million prize money.
Chief Minister Adam Giles said the campaign was designed to lure visitors from around Australia and overseas by showcasing the NT “as the best place in the world to stay, play and fish”.
Mr Giles said about one billion barramundi lived in Top End waters and that the likelihood of the tagged 76 being caught was anyone’s guess.
“This is an Australian first,” he said.
“The NT has some of the best fishing in the world and the chance to catch the iconic Territory barramundi is one of fishing’s greatest challenges. Now that challenge comes with the potential of a one million dollar reward.
“The promotion is times to influence travel to the Top End during our low season from October to February with anglers encouraged to travel with their families and enjoy the unique tourism experiences and spectacular landscapes the whole of the Territory has to offer.
“About 40,000 interstate visitors come to the Top End for fishing every year but we want to encourage even more people to stay, play and fish.
“The new, exciting campaign is part of the Government’s plan to drive the development of North Australia and build a $2.2 billion visitor economy by 2020.”
Mr Giles said the event will be the “biggest fishing competition in Australia.
Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT executive officer Tristan Sloan said the organisation worked with Tourism NT to ensure the competition complied with sustainable fishing and best practice tag and release fishing.
“The Northern Territory is nationally and internationally renowned for its untouched environment, amazing wildlife and spectacular recreational fishing … the Million Dollar Fish campaign demonstrates the importance of recreational fishing to tourism and the economy of the Top End for both local and visiting anglers.”
Visit www.milliondollarfish.com.au to register.
Originally published as This fish is worth a million dollars