• fast start;
  • temperature;
  • dams;
  • hypolimnial releases;
  • Macquaria ambigua

Abstract –  The fast-start swimming performance of juveniles of an Australian freshwater (warm-water) fish, golden perch, was examined in the laboratory at six water temperatures ranging between 10 and 25 °C. Fast-start swimming performance of fish was considerably reduced at temperatures less than 15.5 °C. Temperatures of less than 15 °C are typical of the thermal regime downstream of large dams in south-eastern Australia, where conditions are more suited to introduced cold-water fish species. We conclude that the swimming performance of native warm-water fish such as golden perch is likely to be negatively affected by cold-water releases from deep outlets in thermally stratified dams.