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Fishing at Lake Tinaroo

Tinaroo Falls Dam was constructed in 1958 on Barron River. It holds 436 500 mega litres of water, has an average depth of 13 meters and has a surface area of 3360 hectares. The dam wall is mass gravity concrete construction that is 45 meters high, 533 meters long and 35 meters thick at the base. Lake Tinaroo extends 15kms upstream with a shoreline of approximately 210 km.

Fishing in Tinaroo Dam can be quite the experience either out in a boat or straight off the banks. Fishing species include: Barramundi, Sooty Grunter, Red Claw, Fork-Tailed Catfish, Tilapia, Archerfish, Mouth Almighty, Bony Bream, Silver Perch, Sleepy Cod and Mangrove Jack. Tilapia were illegally introduced into Lake Tinaroo and have established themselves. This pest species should be destroyed if caught. It is illegal to place them back into the lake once they have been caught. The main drawcards to Tinaroo Dam are the Sooty Grunter (in excess of 6 kg) and famous Barramundi (recorded to 45kg).
Use neutral colour lurers for fresh water fishing. Lurers ranging from 4-6” in size are good for targeting Barramundi and smaller lurers for fish like Sooty Gunter and Mouth Almighty. Poppers have also proven effective and fishing in quiet sheltered bays is ideal.

 * A Stocked Impoundment Permit (SIP) is required to fish within Lake Tinaroo. These permits can be purchased online at the Queensland Government Fisheries website or from a Queensland Post Office, the closest being at the Kairi Store. You can choose either a yearly or weekly permit for the area and anyone under the age of 18 are free.

 Boating Access:

There are currently no boating restrictions with several concrete boat ramps available. The most commonly used is located only a few hundred metres from our park just off Lamb St. There is another boat ramp located at Blackgully.

Fish Size and Bag Limits:


Size Min and Max

Bag Limit



58cm Min 120cm Max

Bag Limit of 5 per person


Sooty Grunter

28cm Min  No Max

Bag Limit of 10 per person


Red Claw

No Min or Max Size   

Max 4 pots per person

Please only take enough for 1 meal and throwback small and berried ones.

Fork-tail Catfish

35cm Min  No Max    

No Bag Limit

Please kill, as they are a pest.


No Min or Max Size   

Illegal to Release

Illegal to Release. Kill and dispose of in rubbish bin.


No Min or Max Size

No Bag Limit

Excellent for live bait.

Mouth Almighty

No Min or Max Size

No Bag Limit

Excellent for live bait.

Silver Perch

30cm Min  No Max    

Bag limit of 5 per person


Bony Bream

No Min or Max Size 

Bag limit of 20 per person 


Mangrove Jack

35cm Min  No Max   

Bag limit of 5 per person


 Tinaroo Locals Fishing Tips


Find a calm, quiet bay and trawl up and down the shallow banks. Try flicking your lures around fallen trees and snags. We recommend using non-rattling neutral colour lures for best results. For a bait option, live is definitely best.

(Minimum size limit 58cm, bag limit 5)

 Black Brim

You most often find these fish near fallen logs and tree branches. For bait try using cheese, meat or lures. You will also need to use a 6kg line or heavier.

(Minimum size limit 28cm, bag limit 10)

 Sleepy Cod

These guys are found in most areas of the Dam. Good bait to use is prawns or squid.

(Bag limit 20)

Mouth Almighty

Again, found in most areas of the Dam and can be caught using any type of bait or lures.

Archer Fish

Found nearly everywhere! Especially in small creeks and at most times feeding on insects.

Cat Fish

Most commonly caught. You will likely catch one with any type of bait in the shallows around fallen trees and branches.

(Minimum size limit 35cm, bag limit 5)

Red Claw Crayfish

We recommend using cooked potato, dog food, cat food or soap to set the pots. You can purchase Opera House pots from our office.

Please keep in mind females with eggs MUST be put back.

(Bag limit 40)



A bad day fishing
is better than a good day at work