Wildlife and vegetation in a small number of the Goulburn Broken catchment’s wetlands will get a drink for the first time in more than a year.
Later this month Black Swamp near Wunghnu and Kinnairds Wetland near Numurkah are due to receive 80ML and 500ML of water respectively.
Threatened, vulnerable or endangered species such as river swamp-wallaby grass, water nymph, freckled ducks, magpie geese, bitterns, and white bellied sea eagles have been recorded at Black Swamp in recent years in response to water deliveries. The last time water for the environment was delivered to Black Swamp was spring 2018.
Kinnairds Wetland near Numurkah is a very popular recreational site and has the largest known recorded population of rigid water-milfoil, a vulnerable plant species. It is also a significant breeding site for royal spoonbills. Kinnairds last received water for the environment in spring 2018.
UPDATED: Around 500ML of water for the environment has been delivered to Loch Garry north of Shepparton. This is the first time water for the environment has been delivered to the wetland. The water has shallowly inundated about 20 per cent of the 680ha wetland, which has significant cultural sites, is a popular recreational destination and when it holds water, supports frogs, turtles, thousands of waterbirds and other native wildlife. Goulburn Broken CMA will survey the extent and depth of the water delivery shortly to help inform future environmental water planning and monitoring.
More information about Loch Garry can be found in the flyer below.
Subject to river operations Doctors Swamp near Murchison, one of the most intact red gum swamps in Victoria, may receive water in May. Planning and consultation is also under way with Goulburn-Murray Water and the community to investigate delivery of water for the environment for the first time to Kanyapella Basin later this year.
Environmental flows are planned by the Goulburn Broken CMA in consultation with the Victorian Environmental Water Holder. The delivery is managed by GMW in line with the VEWH’s Seasonal Watering Plan. Timing of the environmental flows takes into consideration weather conditions, delivery orders by irrigators and other water users and feedback from the community via the Goulburn Broken CMA’s environmental water advisory groups.
Environmental watering is only one way of protecting and improving rivers and wetlands. Fencing and revegetation, erosion control, pest control, returning logs to rivers for fish and bug habitat, and installation of fishways to allow fish to pass through dams and weirs also help.