Million Dollar Fish 2018

The NT's famous Daly River will be one of the locations where $10,000 MDF barra will be released in 2018

The NT’s famous Daly River is one of the locations where $10,000 MDF barra will be released in 2018

Who said 13 was an unlucky number!

That’s how many $10,000 tagged barramundi were caught in the NT’s annual Million Dollar Fish Season 3, during the open fishing period from October 2017 to February 2018.

Darwin fisho John Rorvik landed his 58cm red-tagged barra landbased fishing off rocks near the Deckchair Cinema.

With the all-important verification photos and emails sent, John gave the fish to a friend to eat.

Million Dollar Fish is a tourism initiative to lure visitors to the Territory during the wet season.

In Season 3 of the MDF competition, 101 barramundi were tagged and released across the Territory with 100 carrying $10,000 cash prize tags, and a $1m fish.

That means there were still 87 x $10,000 barras lurking when the season ended, minus whatever fish fell to natural attrition.

Other prizes in Season 3 included a $14,000 Cobourg Fishing Safari Holiday package with flights, transfers and accommodation, and two $1000 BCF gift cards drawn.

MDF Season 1 saw 10 of the tagged barramundi worth $10,000 each caught.

MDF Season 2 saw 8 x $10,000 barra.

MDF Season 3 saw 13.

Season 4 kicks off in October. How many will be caught?

NT barramundi fishing trips – the 2018 list



Northern Territory fishing accommodation, boat hire, charters 2018

Here is our updated list of NT fishing tours, boat hire and accommodation for 2018. Bookmark this page if you are planning an NT fishing trip.

List compiled by staff at North Australian FISH FINDER TM.

Note that fishermen taking bluewater charters out of Darwin can stay anywhere in the city as it is invariably a short trip to where charter boats embark.
Most barramundi tours also leave from Darwin, although there are some regional operations.
A more expensive but preferable option is to stay on a mothership at the fishing location. This puts you on the creeks early.
If touring in a vehicle, consider a stay in Katherine, 350km south of Darwin, central to the Victoria, Roper, Katherine and Daly Rivers.

The NT’s Million Dollar Fish promotion runs each year from October to February, with 100 x $10,000 tagged barra! And a $1m fish …
Karumba fishing accommodation on the lower Gulf of Carpentaria, NQ, is listed at the bottom of the page.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Darwin ….
10 Colonial Court …. details here.
69 @ Kube …. details here.
Adina Apartment Hotel Darwin Waterfront …. details here.
Alatai Holiday Apartments …. details here.
Argus Apartments Darwin …. details here.
Argus Hotel Darwin …. details here.
Bali Studio …. details here.
BeachLife Apartments …. details here.
BIG4 Howard Springs Holiday Park …. details here.
C2 Esplanade Service Apartments …. details here.
Cardona Crt …. details here.
Casa on Gregory …. details here.
Chillis Backpackers …. details here.
Chique Chaque …. details here.
City Gardens Apartments …. details here.
Club Tropical Resort Darwin …. details here.
Coconut Grove Holiday Apartments …. details here.
Crocodilly Inn …. details here.
Crocs on Cavenagh …. details here.
Crown Point on Cullen …. details here.
Cullen Bay Luxury Suites …. details here.
Cullen Bay Resorts …. details here.
Darwin Central Hotel …. details here.
Darwin City B&B …. details here.
Darwin City Chic@Kube Apartments …. details here.
Darwin City Edge Motel & Suites …. details here.
Darwin City Hotel …. details here.
Darwin City Point Hotel (Poinciana Inn) …. details here.
Darwin Deluxe Apartments …. details here.
Darwin Esplanade Escape …. details here.
Darwin Executive Stay …. details here.
Darwin Executive Suites & FREE CAR …. details here.
Darwin holiday home …. details here.
Darwin Waterfront Apartments …. details here.
Darwin Waterfront Luxury Suites …. details here.
Darwin Wharf Escape Holiday Apartments …. details here.
Discovery Parks – Darwin …. details here.
DoubleTree by Hilton Darwin …. details here.
DoubleTree by Hilton Esplanade Darwin …. details here.
Down Under Hostels …. details here.
Eagles Nest Waterfront Retreat …. details here.
Frogs-Hollow Backpackers …. details here.
Frontier Hotel Darwin …. details here.
H Hotel …. details here.
H on Mitchell Apartment Hotel …. details here.
Heritage Apartment …. details here.
Hidden Valley Holiday Park Darwin …. details here.
Hilton Darwin …. details here.
HiWay Inn Motel …. details here.
Jewell Apartment …. details here.
Kakadu @ the Kube (Darwin City) …. details here.
La Marina Waterfront Villa …. details here.
Luma Luma Holiday Apartments …. details here.
Mandalay Luxury Stay …. details here.
Mantra on The Esplanade …. details here.
Mantra Pandanas …. details here.
Marrakai Apartments …. details here.
Melaleuca on MitchellDarwin YHA …. details here.
Mercure Darwin Airport Resort …. details here.
Metro Advance Apartments & Hotel …. details here.
Novotel Darwin Airport …. details here.
Novotel Darwin CBD …. details here.
Oaks Elan Darwin …. details here.
One30 Esplanade …. details here.
Palms City Resort …. details here.
Parap Village Apartments …. details here.
Paravista Motel …. details here.
Peninsular Apartments …. details here.
Pips Esplanade Hideaway …. details here.
Quality Hotel Darwin Airport …. details here.
Quest Berrimah …. details here.
Quest Palmerston Darwin …. details here.
Quest Parap …. details here.
Ramada Suites Zen Quarter …. details here.
RNR Serviced Apartments …. details here.
Rydges Palmerston …. details here.
Saltwater Suites …. details here.
Seabreeze on Nightcliff …. details here.
Sky View …. details here.
Skycity Darwin …. details here.
Skytower Central …. details here.
Sunset on Nightcliff …. details here.
The Bali House …. details here.
The Cavenagh …. details here.
The Leprechaun Resort …. details here.
The Lookout …. details here.
Travelodge Resort Darwin …. details here.
Value Inn …. details here.
Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront …. details here.
Villa Frangipani …. details here.
Wagait Beach Bush Retreat …. details here.
Youth Shack Backpackers Darwin …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing Bynoe Harbour ….
Crab Claw Island …. details here.
Sandpalms Roadhouse …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Adelaide River ….
Goat Island Lodge …. details here.
Mt Bundy Station …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing Kakadu ….
Cooinda Lodge Kakadu …. details here.
Kakadu Lodge …. details here.
Mercure Kakadu Crocodile …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Nhulunbuy ….
Bremer Island Banubanu Beach Retreat …. details here.
Walkabout Lodge …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Katherine ….
Cicada Lodge …. details here.
ibis Styles Katherine …. details here.
Katherine Motel …. details here.
Katherine River Lodge …. details here.
Knotts Crossing Resort …. details here.
Paraway Motel …. details here.
Pine Tree Motel …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Daly River ….
Woolianna on the Daly …. details here.
Daly River Barra Resort …. details here.
Banyan Farm …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Roper River ….
Roper Bar Caravan Park …. details here.
Tomato Island Campground (Munbililla) only vans and tents …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the McArthur River ….
King Ash Bay Fishing Club …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing the Mary River region ….
Corroboree Park Tavern …. details here.
Mary River Houseboats …. details here.
Mary River Wilderness Retreat …. details here.

Remote NT private camps ….
Wiligi Arnhem Land …. details here.
Cobourg Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Lorella Springs Station …. details here.
Limmen Fishing Camp …. on the Limmen Bight River has fuel, riverside camping and very basic accommodation 25km from the Savannah Way Cox River crossing. Ph 08 8975 9844.
Seven Emu Station …. details here.

Manangoora Station …. access to the Wearyan River, Gulf of Carpentaria and Vanderlin Island. Phone: 08 8975 9549.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Dundee Beach ….
Dundee Beach Holiday Park …. details here.
Mermaid Rest …. details here.
Rustic Retreat …. details here.
Skippers at Dundee …. details here.

Darwin and NT boat hire services ….
Barra Boat Hire …. details here.
Darwin Boat Hire …. details here.
Top End Boat Hire …. details here.
Outback Boat Hire …. details here.
Corroboree Boat Hire …. details here.
Offshore Boat Hire …. details here.
Mary River Houseboats …. details here.

Bluewater fishing charters out of Darwin ….
Arafura Bluewater Charters …. details here.
Equinox Charters …. details here.

Barramundi fishing guides out of Darwin ….
Spring Tide Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Darwin North Australia (DNA) Barramundi Fishing Tours …. details here.
Darwin Barra and Crab …. details here.
Obsession Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Daly River Barra Resort …. details here.

Remote NT charters ….
Cobourg Fishing Safaris …. details here.
Cannon Charters …. details here.

Accommodation for people fishing out of Karumba in the Gulf of Carpentaria (NQ) ….
Ash’s Holiday Units …. details here.
End of the Road Motel …. details here.
Gee-Dee’s Family Cabins …. details here.
Karumba Point Sunset Caravan Park …. details here.
Matildas End Holiday Units …. details here.
Riverside Karumba …. details here.



Top End rivers in flood

The Daly River near the late January 2018 flood peak. Picture: NT Police.

The Daly River near the January 31, 2018, flood peak. Picture: NT Police

The year 2018 brought a major wet season to the Top End, with catchments in late January formed into the typical inland sea that marks a great run-off fishing year.

The Moyle, Finniss, Adelaide, Daly, Mary and Kakadu’s rivers are all well flooded and likely to turn on superb run-off fishing when it settles down.

As I write the famous Daly is at 14.5m and looking to hit 14.8 on January 31, already well over the major flood level.

What’s needed after the big flood is consistent follow-up rain to keep rivers high for a few weeks so nature’s super-cycle really gets going.

There was good rain in December, but quite a break in early January.

Consistent high levels tend to bring the best barramundi fishing, and also the best recruitment of young fish.

On the east side of the Top End, the McArthur River got a good burst, albeit short.

The Roper could again use more. It has missed out a really good soak in recent years.

Cape York has also missed the best of it, the Top End has the star role this year, although WA’s Kimberley rivers have had good falls.

With the Million Dollar Fish promotion running through February, and flooding in place, the NT is the place for barra fishos to be in 2018.

Saltwater intrusion and barramundi fishing

The NT's The Chambers Bay coast ... saltwater intrusion has already changed huge areas of freshwater wetlands for several kilometres inland

The Chambers Bay coast … saltwater intrusion has changed huge areas of freshwater wetland

Rising sea levels and saltwater intrusion into Territory wetlands is an important issue for barramundi fishing because it changes the landscape of famous fishing areas.

The change has been happening quite quickly. Perhaps the best known area for change is the Mary River system around Sampan and Tommycut Creeks.

The attached document (link below) illustrates how things have changed.

With the sea level rising faster than ever, the map will look very different again in 100 years, with famous freshwater holes like Corroboree likely to be inundated by seawater to become tidal waterways.

Take a few minutes to read the document to see what has happened at Kakadu and other NT waterways in the past 100 years. Even the past 50 years have seen significant change.

Saltwater intrusion document

NT barramundi fishing spots

A barramundi fishing spot near Darwin, from the North Australian FISH FINDER book

A barramundi fishing spot near Darwin, from the North Australian FISH FINDER book

Ten of the NT’s $10,000 tagged barra have been caught, out of 101 fish, since Million Dollar Fish Season 3 kicked off in October 2017.

That’s 10 tags taken in a little over a month! A superb recapture rate.

The fish have come from far and wide, including landbased captures, but mostly from the NT’s best-known barramundi fishing spots, such as the Daly River, Mary River and Darwin Harbour.

Well-known local fishos have caught some of the fish, showing that a little knowledge goes a long way. You have to know the spots, and when to fish them.

There’s still up to 91 fish out there, including the $1m fish itself.

Where to find them? More of that in a second.

What is less well known about the Territory’s annual Million Dollar Fish promotion is that there are many prizes other than cash for the red tags, such as the superb Cam Outlander quad bike below.

Just register for the event and follow any instructions for a chance to win. MDF runs until the end of February.

It’s all here … http://www.milliondollarfish.com.au/

And the best barramundi fishing spots in the NT are in the FISH FINDER TM book here … http://www.fishfinderbooks.com

A Cam Outlander ... one of the prizes in the NT's Million Dollar Fish Season 3

A Cam Outlander … one of the prizes in the NT’s Million Dollar Fish Season 3

Million Dollar Fish Season 3 starts October

Million Dollar Fish Season 3

Million Dollar Fish Season 3

The NT’s Million Dollar Fish Season 3 starts October 1 … 100 x $10,000 tagged barra, and $1 million dollar fish!

The fish are released in waterways across the NT.

All the best barramundi spots are in the 2017/18 North Australian FISH FINDER … http://www.fishfinderbooks.com … along with our famous NT Fishing GPS Data Card.

Join the local (NT) discussion here … https://fishingterritory.com/barra-and-estuary-fishing-trip-reports-f1/million-dollar-fish-2017-starts-october-1-t40554.html

Good luck!