Waterway

Wetlands along the Murray River flood….

Wednesday 30 November, 2005
Four wetland sites have flooded this year along the Murray River upstream of the Barmah Forest - a return to natural flooding regimes is expected with a myriad of benefits set to follow.

Four wetland sites have flooded this year along the Murray River upstream of the Barmah Forest - a return to natural flooding regimes is expected with a myriad of benefits set to follow.

The flooding is due to recent earthworks at sites between Tocumwal and Yarrawonga combined with the release of environmental water downstream from the Barmah Millewa wetlands.

Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority’s Environmental Water Reserve Manager Keith Ward said earthworks completed in the area three years ago has now allowed three wetland sites at Cobram Regional Park and one at Tocumwal Regional Park to flood more naturally.

The works, funded by the Victorian Rural Water Reform Program were part of the Floodplain Rehabilitation Program in conjunction with the North East Catchment Management Authority.

Mr Ward said environmental water released had maximised the effects of high Spring rainfall and also assisted the wetlands to flood. He said a return to more natural flood regimes could be expected in the future which would improve the health of indigenous wetland species, habitats for waterbirds and river health.

At Shiers Lagoon in Cobram Regional Park, other work has included a new bridge replacing a track crossing allowing fish to move more easily along the anabranch. The track crossing had previously caused a fish barrier.

La Trobe University has set-up a program to monitor the benefits of a more natural flooding regime returning to the wetlands as a result of the works.

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