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Ecologist casts an eye over wetland and creek

After a rainy start to the day, Mother Nature was kind enough to grant a few hours of sunshine for John Simpson, to take us on a quick tour of Biddabah Creek, with a special focus on the wetland and swamp areas.

To the novice, the wetland appears to be choked up and in bad shape, but ecologist John Simpson says it is functioning as intended. The main aquatic plants are Persicaria decipiens Slender Knotweed, Ludwigia peploides Floating Primrose, Lemnoideae, Duck Weed and Azolla, an aquatic fern – all native species. They will flourish and dieback according to the seasons and water availability. 

Within the riparian zone, native trees are doing well, although there is some urgent need for weed control before the weeds get out of hand.

There is a lot more diversity than we had imagined.  ‘There’s always room for improvement, but all things considered, Lake Mac Council has made a serious attempt to ensure that the creek is protected from suburban contamination,’ John said. The installation of sediment traps and water detention basins are a prominent part of this.

We now have a much clearer idea of the plant species living along the banks within the riparian zone. The canopy and understory trees are supplemented with shrubs and ground covers, providing habitat for wildlife and opportunities for community appreciation.  There will be further reports in future issues.

MMM … Issue 29, May 2022