Water

Kanyapella Basin to receive its first environmental watering

By Rodney Woods

Water for the environment will be delivered to the Kanyapella Basin, east of Echuca, for the first time later this month.

The 3000 ha depression was once part of the large ancestral Lake Kanyapella and the area is of great cultural significance to Yorta Yorta people.

It is one of the largest wetlands in the Goulburn Broken catchment, is dominated by river red gums and black box, and is home to 21 rare or threatened birds including egrets, royal spoonbills, brolga and white-bellied sea eagles.

Eight threatened and rare plants have also been recorded at the site, including a population of rigid water milfoil during a pre-watering survey earlier this year.

“It is really exciting that this delivery is finally happening,” Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority environmental water project officer Jo Deretic said.

“Landholders and traditional owners have been calling for environmental flows for some time now to protect and improve the basin's cultural and natural values and improve the area's amenity.”

Up to 500 Ml of water for the environment will be delivered to the site via the Coram Drain and Yambuna Creek at a rate of 20 Ml/day.

Water will enter the swamp on the western edge at the Warrigal Creek/Tongala Drain intersection and flow into the middle of the eastern side of the swamp.

This trial delivery will shallowly inundate about 10 per cent of the wetland.

Monitoring will be carried out during and after the delivery to help manage the timing and size of future flows and measure the environmental response.

An exact start date for the watering is yet to be determined.