Sleepy Cod

Sleepy Cod

Sleepy Cod – Oxyeloetris lineolatus – also known as Sleeper Cod, are found in coastal and inland streams, rivers and billabongs from the Fitzroy River system northwards to Cape York and the Gulf of Carpentaria. Sleepy Cod are known to grow to a weight of 3kg and a length of 50cm, but are more commonly found at a length of 20 – 35cm.

There are currently no size restriction or bag limits placed upon this species. This species is NOT stocked in Lake Monduran.

Sleepy Cod reach maturity when they are approximately 250mm in length and spawn during October through to February when water temperatures reach 24 degrees Celsius and above.


Sleepy Cod are easy to breed and are a hardy species which withstand capture, handling and transport. As a result, Sleepy Cod fingerling’s are readily available for stocking and have been stocked successfully into a number of rivers and impoundments throughout Queensland.

Their success in impoundments is due to their ability to breed naturally in these areas after being stocked. As a result, fisheries have been enhanced in Queensland’s impoundments and Sleepy Cod are becoming more frequent in anglers catches.


Sleepy Cod generally inhabit areas of slow flooding water around weed banks and submerged logs. During the day juveniles tend to bury themselves into sand or debris, while larger fish lie still on the bottom. Sleepy Cod remain motionless until prey passes by – then they will move rapidly to capture the prey. Prey includes shrimp, insects, frogs and small fish.

Due to their relatively sluggish nature, Sleepy Cod are not considered a good sport-fish. Feeding activity for Sleepy Cod is greatest at night and they are rarely seen during the winter. Night time fishing in summer is the most productive when fishing for shrimp, small live fish such as Spangle Perch and Boney Bream, meat baits such as squid, dead prawns, liver, heart and chicken giblets.

In clear shallow areas, Sleepy Cod can also be captured at night with a scoop net and torch. Sleepy Cod are superb eating fish as the flesh is firm, white, flaky and does not hold any muddy taste. For this reason the Sleepy Cod is a much sought after table fish.