Tandanus tandanus

Eel-tailed catfish (Tandanus tandanus) is a freshwater species of catfish endemic to the Murray Darling system. Many freshwater anglers who target them also refer to them as dewfish or freshwater jewfish. They are present in many of the freshwater lakes and impoundments along the East coast of the country (except for the Alpine areas) and in the rivers and creeks that feed them.

As the name suggests the eel-tailed catfish has an eel like tail and an olive green to black top colouration depending on the waterway they come from with a white belly. Care should be taken when handling these fish as they have a number of spines (dorsal and pectoral fins) that have serrated edges that can cause a painful wound.

Unlike other catfish species, eel-tailed catfish are a popular angling species and considered to be good eating. Some preparation is required once caught as they have very tough skin which needs to be removed before the fish is cooked.

Eel-tailed catfish are generally targeted using bait. Fresh garden or compost worms are the preferred bait. They are not commonly caught by lure anglers; however, they do become more aggressive when nesting and have been known to be caught by anglers using soft plastics or small hardbody lures.

Size limits, rules and regulations do vary depending on the state you are fishing in, so please check your local rules before targeting them.

Log In