Systems Repair – Lower Burdekin

WaterwaysWetlandsCoastsRestoring Burdekin Coastal Ecosystems for the Great Barrier Reef and Ramsar Project

Systems Repair – Lower Burdekin is this project’s short title. The project is a collaboration between NQ Dry Tropics, Lower Burdekin Water and the Burdekin Shire Council to strategically restore ecological function to priority wetlands and waterways within the operational area of Lower Burdekin Water. The long term objective is to reinstate natural seasonality of the water flow, or occasionally ‘dry’ wetlands out, to control invasive weed species.

Priority project sites were identified from data on land zones, weed distribution, landholder support, previous investment, links to existing projects and other factors. The second stage of the prioritisation process involved a review by the water boards to include their local on-ground knowledge.

A key highlight was an outcome from a workshop held with Burdekin Shire Council and Lower Burdekin Water staff. Attendees were taught identification techniques of two weed species new to the area. Two days later an outbreak of water mimosa, a Class 1 weed, was identified by an excavator driver and was quickly contained. The point source of the weed was located in a residents backyard and destroyed.

Highlights

  • Promoted the program to over 150 natural resource management professionals and stakeholders including local government and water board staff
  • Revegetated 1.5 ha of stream bank with over 2,000 plants
  • Controlled 420 ha of aquatic weeds
  • Protected and enhanced 40 ha of coastal vegetation
  • Built the capacity of individual stakeholders to identify new weeds