Project? Lagoons Creek rehabilitation
Where? Lagoons Creek, Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens
What’s happening at this site? Creation of a naturalised waterway with two adjacent wetlands. Stage two includes creation of a corridor to the wetlands and installation of three fishways.
Who’s involved? Reef Catchments is working closely with Mackay Regional Council and the Department of Transport and Main Roads on this major project. Co-funding has been provided through the Australian Government Reef Programme. A big thanks also to Catchment Solutions, who provided the technical input for the design of the fishways, wetlands and in-stream habitat features.
The wetlands have now been connected for fish migrating from the Pioneer River Estuary to the Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens wetlands (Lagoons Creek) via the construction of three, two-ridge rock ramp fishways.
Fishways enable fish, such as barramundi, to migrate past barriers to breed and develop. If manmade or natural barriers obstruct fish, fish health and population will decline. Fishways provide a clear passage through our waterways to allow them to complete their life cycle.
The construction of the two large wetlands and meandering creek channel have also been completed.
Moving forward, the installation of large root balls will offer complex habitats for juvenile and small-bodied fish to hide and for large predators to feed.
Endemic native plants are still to be planted. These will offer shade and habitat.
What benefits does this project aim to provide?
The project will address issues through the establishment of a vegetation corridor, rock placement, filtration of water entering the waterway, and in-stream vegetation to treat pollutants. Installing wetland and submerged plants provides the retention time required by ‘biofilms’ to grow and treat pollutants. Water quality is key to the survival and health of diverse aquatic fauna and the flora on which they feed.
This project will reinstate habitat and establish a strong, healthy ecosystem – that means more fish, birds and fauna in our beautiful botanic gardens moving forward. Activity will facilitate a vital connection between saltwater and freshwater environments.