A study of the Australian irrigators’ attitudes towards the modern, self-cleaning irrigation pump screen

Research output: Other contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Modern self-cleaning irrigation pump screens can protect fish populations and deliver operational benefits to irrigators. However, the uptake of fish-screen is mixed, and there is limited evidence concerning irrigators attitudes towards this innovative fish screen. Our study addresses this knowledge deficit through in-depth, semi-structured interviews (n=18) with NSW irrigators. These interviews considered: (1) current pump screening practices and experiences; (2) the current level of awareness of fish-screening options; (3) attitudes towards the environmental and financial benefits and risks associated with fish screening; and (4) and overall intentions to install fish screens and the role of attitudes and other factors in impacting these intentions. A blended theoretical framework, drawing on the theory of planned behaviour, diffusion of innovations, and constructivist grounded theory, informed the interviews and the subsequent analysis of findings. The research revealed that most participants had little understanding of the impact of irrigation on native fish loss and had little knowledge about modern fish screens. At this stage, they do not believe their pumps are contributing significantly to fish loss but recognise that it could be animportant issue. Participants displayed high levels of curiosity, a desire to improve practices and work collaboratively with water and environmental authorities, government bodies, fishing groups and other river users. Therefore, with reliable information and support, the probability of widespread adoption of fish screens in Australia is relatively high.

Keywords: self-cleaning, fish screen, NSW irrigators, Australia
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2022
Event4th Online International Conference on Aquaculture and Fisheries - Online
Duration: 28 Mar 202229 Mar 2022


Conference4th Online International Conference on Aquaculture and Fisheries
Abbreviated titleAquaculture and fisheries current research and advancements
OtherAbstract book saved to PID 204327272
Internet address


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