Silver Perch

Latin name: Bidyanus bidyanus

  • Better Choice



Key Facts

  • Silver perch is a freshwater fish that was once common in the Murray-Darling River.
  • Silver perch is farmed mainly in small-scale operations on land in ponds and tanks.
  • The discharge of wastewater to natural waterways is controlled in order to prevent pollution and the spread of diseases to threatened wild populations of silver perch.
  • The amount of wild caught fish needed to produce fishmeal and fish oil for silver perch feed is approximately equal to the amount of farmed fish produced. This means production dependence on wild fish resources is not exceeding the amount of silver perch produced.

Cooking & Recipes


Perch is an affordable species with mild-tasting, soft white flesh. Try them grilled, fried, baked, battered or crumbed. Perch are often steamed in Asian cooking with strong flavours such as lemongrass and ginger.

More information

  • Australian production (149t in 2020/21)

Silver perch (Bidyanus bidyanus) is a native freshwater fish. Its natural distribution extends through the western drainage of New South Wales, including most of the Murray-Darling Basin

Silver perch is farmed on land in ponds. These ponds are small-scale, and have a low impact on their surrounding habitat. Wastewater is either discharged to natural waterways or used to irrigate crops. Wastewater quality is monitored to prevent pollution and ensure that it does not carry disease that can infect wild populations, as silver perch is threatened in many parts of Australia.

As an omnivorous species, silver perch are dependent on the fishmeal and fish oil in fish feed produced from wild caught fish. However, they can be farmed on a diet relatively low in fishmeal and oil, and feed manufacturers are continuing to produce feeds with lower quantities of wild caught fish. Farmed silver perch has a better wild fish in to farmed fish out ratio than farmed carnivorous finfish species such as rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon. The amount of farmed silver perch produced is approximately equal to the amount of fish caught from the wild for the feed to produce the farmed fish, depending on the farming operation. This means production dependence on wild fish resources is not exceeding the amount of silver perch produced.