Threatened Murray crayfish have been given a ride down the Murray River to ensure their survival.
Population numbers of the threatened Murray Crayfish have been bolstered after 200 of the species were relocated, which takes the total to more than 800 that had been re-homed in four years, with future operations planned to ensure the long-term sustainability of the species.
Agriculture Minister Adam Marshall said Murray Crayfish were once widespread throughout the Murray and Murrumbidgee catchments, however their numbers had declined and they were now listed as 'vulnerable' in NSW.
"It is critical that we ensure the survival of this species as they are the world's second-largest freshwater crayfish and are unique to the Murray-Darling Basin, so relocation programs like this will help them thrive," Mr Marshall said.
"Murray Crayfish have very low dispersal abilities and occupy small home-ranges, which means they struggle to recolonise areas where their population has declined.
"These crayfish - including adult females with eggs - were moved from an area where they are already abundant to a site downstream which suffered a significant decline in local population due to blackwater events."
The NSW Department of Primary Industries runs the translocations with Aquasave - Nature Glenelg Trust, with NSW Recreational Fishing Trust funding.
"The NSW Government is committed to seeing Murray Crayfish thrive, so it is heartening to see this program run so successfully," Mr Marshall said.
"But to secure their population numbers we also need to have sustainable fishing regulations in place, including size and bag limits and ensure that crayfish are not taken from waters other than during the open season from June to August."