Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts
South Australian wetlands to receive environmental water
20 May 2010
The Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder, Mr Ian Robinson, has announced that wetlands at Molo Flat and Overland Corner in South Australia will receive Commonwealth environmental water over the next two months.
The wetlands are important drought refuges on the Lower Murray River and provide habitat for nationally threatened species including the regent parrot and the southern bell frog.
“A volume of 327 megalitres (ML), or million litres, of water has been committed to wetlands at Molo Flat on the River Murray, north west of Waikerie, for the first time,” Mr Robinson said.
The wetlands have been dry since 2006 and many mature river red gums are becoming stressed. These trees provide habitat for the regent parrot. Watering is expected to support the health of river red gums and other flooddependent plants and animals.
“Overland Corner on the River Murray Floodplain near Kingston-On-Murray has been allocated 200 ML of Commonwealth environmental water to complement 297 ML being provided by South Australia,” Mr Robinson said.
Vegetation at Overland Corner responded well to watering in May and June last year, when 500 million litres of Commonwealth environmental water was provided. Significant numbers of frog species, including the threatened southern bell frog, were observed using and breeding at the site.
“Further watering this year will build upon these responses,” Mr Robinson said.
The South Australian Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board in conjunction with the Berri-Barmera Local Action Planning Association and the Overland Corner Branch of the National Trust of South Australia will deliver the water and monitor the ecological responses at Overland Corner.
The sites to receive water were selected based on input by the South Australian Department of Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation and after receiving advice from the Environmental Water Scientific Advisory Committee.
More information about the Australian Government’s environmental watering program is available at: www.environment.gov.au/water/policy-programs/cewh.