Western Murray Land Improvement Group, The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper
The first of three environmental water deliveries planned for areas within Koondrook-Perricoota Forest F21-22 commenced on August 7. This year marks the seventh consecutive year of managed deliveries to the Pollack, as of August 13. After the first week, a total of 151ML had been delivered, covering 48ha of the swamp. The first watering has already made a positive impact on the site with new shoots and leaves appearing. As the water spreads across the site, it is expected that continued wetland revegetation will emerge.
As well as revegetation, local waterbirds are also already benefiting, with 17 species recorded including a pair of black swans with six young cygnets. This is the first time in decades that black swans have bred at the Pollack. Environmental consultant, Dan Hutton, is very satisfied with the early signs of improvement, commenting that the Pollack Swamp Enhancement team “couldn’t have asked for a better start. The ecological response has been immediate.”
As with previous years, water delivery is planned to continue and be carefully managed through spring and summer to help improve the ecological condition of the Pollack and ensure any breeding waterbirds complete their breeding cycle. With two more planned water deliveries this year, Dan and the team will continue to monitor the volume and depth of the Pollack as well as dissolved oxygen levels which measures water quality and is a direct indicator of the swamp’s ability to support aquatic life.
As a result of the demonstrated success of the Pollack, the local community is continuing to partner with government agencies to obtain the necessary endorsements and approvals for similar codesigned, small watering events planned for two other areas within Koondrook-Perricoota Forest and Little Forest.
Community members who are interested in receiving similar updates via email can do so by signing up to the Koondrook Perricoota Forest community mailing list by visiting www.westernmurraylig.org/the-pollack-swamp-enhancement-project.
This article appeared in The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper, 19 August 2021.