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Vertical slot fishway

Vertical slot fishway – Key considerations

Vertical slot fishway examples: </br>
		1. Left: keyhole slot design in a vertical slot fishway, Yallakool Creek, New South Wales </br>
		2. Middle: precast concrete rectangular vertical slot baffle, showing rocky base of fishway and metal grate overhead, Yallakool Creek, New South Wales </br>
		3. Top-right: vertical slot fishway, showing rectangular slot design, Sheepstation Creek, Ayr, Queensland </br>
		4. Bottom-right: metal keyhole slot design in vertical slot fishway baffle, Chowilla Regulator, South Australia
		Photo by Ivor Stuart (1,2 and 4), and Tim Marsden (3)

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Vertical slot fishway entrance (centre) and Loudoun Weir (right) (Condamine River, Qld) Photo by Douglas Harding

In addition to the general information for all fishway types, the following applies to vertical slot fishways.

Requirements for effective passage

Vertical slot fishways maintain constant velocity and turbulence levels throughout the fishway at varying river flows and are able to operate over a relatively wide range of headwater and tailwater levels[1].

Suitability and limitations

Vertical slot fishways typically allow a broad range of fish species to pass when appropriately designed, but can be expensive to construct.

There are several vertical slot fishways across coastal and inland rivers of Queensland, mostly south of Mackay and including the Murray-Darling Basin.

Disclaimer: In addition to the standard disclaimer located at the bottom of the page, please note the Fishways (biopassage structures) disclaimer.


  1. ^ O’Connor, J, Stuart, I & Mallen-Cooper, M (2015), 'Performance, operation and maintenance guidelines for fishways and fish passage works', Trove. [online] Available at: [Accessed 10 November 2020].

Last updated: 10 May 2021

This page should be cited as:

Department of Environment, Science and Innovation, Queensland (2021) Vertical slot fishway – Key considerations , WetlandInfo website, accessed 1 February 2024. Available at:

Queensland Government
WetlandInfo   —   Department of Environment, Science and Innovation