Wonnerup sandbar opened as part of inlet strategy
Released 15 Dec 2014
The Wonnerup Inlet sandbar was opened on 10 December by the Water Corporation as part of an ongoing management strategy to improve water quality in the inlet.
"The sandbar has traditionally been opened at this time of year to improve water quality and tidal exchange within the Wonnerup Inlet," Department of Water Executive Director Regional Delivery and Regulation Paul Brown said.
Mr Brown said the opening of the sandbar is an agreed action endorsed by the State Government's Vasse Taskforce chaired by the Water Minister Mia Davies.
"This is one of the actions under the Fish Kill Mitigation and Response Strategy managed by the Vasse Estuary Technical Working Group (VETWG) set up to assist reduction in the frequency and severity of fish deaths in the waterways."
The VETWG consists of Water Corporation, departments of Water, Parks and Wildlife, Fisheries and the City of Busselton.
He said the Department of Water in partnership with Murdoch University are starting a trial to determine if letting seawater further up the estuary reduces fish deaths and improves water quality upstream of the Vasse floodgates.
"The trial is supported by weekly monitoring by the Department of Water with additional water quality monitoring and fish tracking being undertaken by Murdoch University Researchers.
"The fish gates on the floodgates will be opened for 24 hours in a two weekly cycle as part of the trial."
The trial will run over the 2014-15 summer and results of the trial will be assessed by the VETWG and the Vasse Taskforce led by Water Minister Mia Davies.
The State Government Vasse Taskforce includes the Geographe Catchment Council (GeoCatch); South West Catchments Council; South West Development Commission; departments of Water, Parks and Wildlife, Agriculture and Food, Planning, and Fisheries; City of Busselton; Shire of Capel; Busselton Water and the Water Corporation.
Contact: Peter Collins
Phone: (08) 6364 6848 / 0434 603 441