A Wetland Working Group was formed in 2014 to promote the sustainable use and management of natural and constructed wetlands in the Mackay Whitsunday Isaac NRM region.
The group includes representatives from Reef Catchments, DAFF (Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry), GBRMPA, Mackay Regional Council, Whitsunday Regional Council, Isaac Regional Council and the regional Landcare groups (Pioneer, Sarina and Whitsunday).
The aim of the group is to develop and share information about current and future wetland activities that are happening locally, as well as identifying partnerships to add value to these projects. The group will also work together to develop and promote communication and awareness raising products (videos) and events (wetland field days).
Wetlands (areas of the land where water covers the soil) are some of the most diverse and important environmental assets in the region.
Wetlands can be both natural or constructed and deliver a realm of benefits, including:
- Provide protection from the marine environment to the land and shore and reduce the impacts of floods
- Provide critical sites for biodiversity, providing habitat for plants and animals, including many migratory, juveniles native fish species and some regionally iconic species such as the rare Black Necked Stork
Wetland types are diverse and can include rivers, swamps, lakes, lagoons, mudflats, mangroves and even coral reefs.
Reef Catchments is also working on an ABCD management framework for constructed wetlands to highlight further activities, including maintenance, required for the wetland to work effectively.