About Fishes 

Australians have always had a close association with the sea as a source of food, entertainment and for social and cultural reasons. In this respect, we are fortunate in having possibly the greatest variety of seafood available anywhere. Australian seafood is second-to-none in quality and is enjoyed by millions of people both locally and overseas.

Australia’s maritime zone at a glance:

  • one of the largest in the world,

  • covering about 14 million square kilometres: about twice the area of Australia’s landmass

  • a diverse range of freshwater and marine habitats

  • over 5000 native species of finfish, and many more crustaceans and molluscs (and perhaps tens of thousands of invertebrate species) — most in relatively small numbers.

  • More than 600 seafood species are commercially harvested and sold in Australia for local and overseas consumption.

Over the past 25 years the FRDC and its partners, in particular CSIRO, have put in a concerted effort to catalogue more than a century of research by Australian scientists and ichthyologists.

The result is a series of resources to guide the public through the complex world of seafood, to help encourage more informed consumption of this important protein source.

  • Fish Names Standard, which prescribes a standard fish name for each species of fish produced or trade in Australia. This standard was approved by Standards Australia in 2007.

  • The latest on the status of the majority of Australian’s fish stock is found on the Status of Australian Fish Stocks Reports or www.fish.gov.au

  • For more culinary information on a wide range of seafood species visit FRDC’s FishFiles. www.fishfiles.com.au

Other important resources developed are FishMap and Redmap.

FishMap is a free online mapping tool that allows anyone interested in fish to discover which fish species occur at any location or depth throughout the marine waters of Australia's continental shelf and slope.

Redmap (Range Extension Database & Mapping project) invites the Australian community to spot, log and map marine species that are uncommon in Australia, or along particular parts of our coast.