Wetlands provide insight into EP groundwater

News article |

Increased monitoring of Eyre Peninsula’s wetlands is the latest tool used by Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula to assist with managing the region’s groundwater systems.

Landscape Biologist Dr Greg Kerr and Monitoring Officer Ben Smith have been undertaking regular surveys of wetland communities across Eyre Peninsula that depend on groundwater for their survival, including Lake Pillie and Sleaford Mere.

“The condition of fringing vegetation around the edge of our wetlands can be a very useful indicator of the condition of our groundwater systems,” Dr Kerr said.

“These surveys will be repeated each year to track changes in the condition of wetland plant species as ground water levels and annual rainfall patterns change. We have a number of other groundwater dependent ecosystems within our Prescribed Wells Areas that we are also monitoring, including red gum communities in Uley Wanilla, Polda and Bramfield,” Dr Kerr said.

Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board Presiding Member Diana Laube said the monitoring project highlighted the commitment the Board has shown to the management of local groundwater resources following the release of the Water Allocation Plan for Southern Basins and the Musgrave Prescribed Wells Areas in June 2016.

“This long-term monitoring is an integral part of the Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting and Improvement Plan that accompanies the Water Allocation Plan. A revised licensing system for commercial water users, installation of telemetered rainfall stations providing access to rainfall data in real time, and a revision of the groundwater monitoring network are some other improvements the Board has recently implemented,” Diana said.

A number of supporting documents, videos and guides to help better understand the Water Allocation Plan are online. Further information please call 8688 3111 or visit www.landscape.sa.gov.au/ep/land-and-water/water-allocation-plan-new

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