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General Category => News Views & Press Releases => Topic started by: Editor on December 16, 2014, 10:21:33 PM

Title: 197 days in Gunbower Forest's new life
Post by: Editor on December 16, 2014, 10:21:33 PM
197 days in Gunbower Forest's new life
10-12-2014 - NCCMA

Media Release Content:

The North Central CMA has reported significant environmental outcomes as the first watering of Gunbower Forest through the newly constructed Hipwell Road Channel came to a close.

Environmental water began flowing from Gunbower Creek through the channel 197 days ago in late May and, following a successful fish exit strategy — pulsing flows were used to send signals to native fish to leave  — watering has now concluded.

The North Central CMA’s chief executive Damian Wells said as this was the first watering, the CMA team had to be adaptable to achieve the remarkable results recorded, with  threatened wetland plants returning in strength and native fish breeding in their hundreds of thousands.

“By way of example, over the course of two hours our monitoring revealed over 14,000 small native fish moving through our purpose-built fishlock, can you imagine what that means over the course of a week or month?” Mr Wells said.

“The cage being used to monitor the fish had to be taken out of the water because of the sheer weight of native fish coming through the fishlock; it’s a remarkable result, with much of the water then heading back out into the Murray River and available for reuse.”

The project’s manager, Anna Chatfield, said the native fish results were a great success, adding that the project team’s monitoring would continue.

“Small native fish bred in tremendous numbers and are now out in the creek and Murray River where they’ll become prey for Murray Cod and Golden Perch — the timing couldn’t be better as those big fish are migrating and breeding right now, and they’re looking for food,” Ms Chatfield said.

“We’ve learned so much. We undertook years of science and modelling in advance, but, forests and wetlands are dynamic, so, now it’s about refining our efforts and also doing all we can to face our environment’s ongoing challenges, for example with carp and with foxes.”

Mr Wells said the results were also a tribute to the passion of the Gunbower community.

“The community here have a great knowledge and care for this place — that care is reflected in a range of views about the watering and those views will continue to help us to refine our efforts.

“The forest is looking magnificent; it’s a wonderful place to visit with all campsites open, so, do come and join us in witnessing what has taken place here,” Mr Wells said.

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Title: Re: 197 days in Gunbower Forest's new life
Post by: A Marshall on December 17, 2014, 12:18:26 PM
Hopefully that sounds like a win for the environment. :youbeauty