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Environmental watering in the Macquarie Marshes

Environmental watering in the Macquarie Marshes

Status

30 June 2014: This action has been completed.

About the watering

A Buff-banded Rail in the Monkeygar wetland, Macquarie Marshes, 2013

The purpose of this environmental watering action was to maintain the ecological health and resilience of the Macquarie Marshes. This included contributing to meeting the basic annual water requirements of native marsh plant communities such as water couch, reeds, typha, spike rush and club rush, and providing freshes in support of native fish reproduction.

Up to 10,000 ML of Commonwealth environmental water in conjunction with up to 50,000 ML of NSW environmental water contributed to a two stage delivery, namely:

  • Up to 51,000 ML, comprising 7,500 ML of Commonwealth and 43,500 ML of NSW environmental water, delivered over a three month period commencing in mid July 2013 with the intention of inundating permanent and semi permanent wetlands in the North and South Macquarie Marshes Nature reserve; and
  • Up to 9,000 ML, comprising 2,500 ML of Commonwealth and 6,500 ML of NSW environmental water, delivered to the Gum Cowal-Terrigal system in the East Macquarie Marshes area over a two month period starting in September to provide flows to semi permanent wetlands and riparian vegetation. This delivery was intended to coincide with warmer water temperatures to also provide hydrologic connectivity and conditions for native fish to access breeding habitat at key reproduction times.

This watering action was managed in cooperation with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, NSW State Water with local community advice from the Macquarie and Cudgegong Environmental Flow Reference Group .

See also: NSW media release - Environmental Water released to Macquarie Marshes

Supplementary Commonwealth environmental water use in the lower Macquarie catchment

Status

30 June 2014: Action not implemented – no supplementary event occurred.

About the watering

The purpose of the water use is to maintain the ecological health and resilience of assets in the lower Macquarie River catchment.

Subject to availability, supplementary Commonwealth environmental water will be used to augment unregulated base to fresh flows in the Macquarie Marshes and effluent creeks from July 2013 through to 30 June 2015. This watering action will contribute to the following expected outcomes:

  • maintain native plant community condition and reproduction
  • promote waterbird survival, condition, reproduction and fledging
  • promote hydrological connectivity.

This watering action is being managed in cooperation with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, NSW State Water with local community advice from the Macquarie and Cudgegong Environmental Flow Reference Group.