Murrumbidgee Landcare Inc. has been successful in obtaining $90 000 Caring For Our Country funding from the Australian Government to begin trialling habitat mitigation options for the Wah Wah pipeline. Waterbirds, turtles, kangaroos, bats and frogs are among the groups likely to be impacted most when the system of open channels and tanks is upgraded.
Matt Herring, an ecologist coordinating the trials, said the project is a fresh reminder of our enormous influence on wildlife occurrence across the landscape.
"It strikes to the core of key questions about which species we want to provide habitat for and how we want to distribute water for wildlife throughout landscapes."
"We're very interested in hearing from as many landholders as possible. The more ideas we have, the bigger bang for our biodiversity buck we're likely to end up with. So far, we're looking at maintaining some of the most significant tanks and enhancing their habitat, as well as constructing new wetland areas. Central to productive wetland habitats are waterplants and shallows. Stock exclusion and earthworks can make a huge difference."
For some species, such as the Galah and Crested Pigeon, the troughs will probably suffice as an alternative water source, but for many other species they won't. There are also nationally threatened species in the Riverina, like the Australasian Bittern, that are not known to use Wah Wah tanks but could benefit greatly from targeted habitat creation.
Mr Herring is interested in hearing from any landholders affected by the pipeline who are keen on mitigating habitat loss on their property or wish to have their say about how our collective mitigation efforts might be best undertaken. He can be contacted on 0428 236 563 or firstname.lastname@example.org