WETLAND RESTORATION ON PRIVATE LAND CASE STUDY 3: BEAUFORT DISTRICT

In this, the third of our early works case studies, we review another completed Nature Glenelg Trust wetland restoration project on a property near Beaufort in Central Victoria.

This project was developed to aid the restoration of a five hectare swamp that occurs on a natural watercourse flowing into Fiery Creek.  The site provides important water storage in the local drainage network whilst also supporting a high quality remnant red-gum forest that creates important habitat for local bird populations.

Earthworks undertaken by previous owners that included channel excavation and the construction of levee embankments have caused significant modification to the natural wetland area.  Since purchasing the property the new owners had noticed changes occurring to the natural inundation zone of the swamp which had historically backed up into the standing red-gums. Concerned that the wetland area was impacted by these past works, the landholders were keen to engage with us to help find a possible solution and develop a remedial response to this issue. After preliminary assessments were undertaken we were able to identify that the recently excavated channels constructed by the previous owners had created a new subsurface drainage pathway for the surface water. The channel excavations had been cut through a shallow depth impervious clay layer in the natural soil structure, subsequently providing an exit route for the surface water to drain through a deeper deposited gravel bed, artificially hastening the loss of water from the wetland system.

On ground works were designed to reduce the depth of the excavated drainage channel by relining the channel bed to effectively reinstate the original confining clay layer. Suitable clay material was sourced on site and a local earthworks contractor was engaged to fill and re-line the drainage channels. To ensure that the capping material was suitably impervious, bentonite clay fines were integrated into the material to increase the sealing effectiveness of the bed material.

This Case Study is the third in a series to illustrate wetland restoration in practice, delivered through Nature Glenelg Trust’s Wetland Restoration Program on Private Land and funded by the Australian Government.

  • Walker Swamp – water and donations flow June 24, 2019 Out at Walker Swamp the water is building up. Mountain Duck pairs are hanging about, and we can hear the Brolga calling in the distance … we are all quietly excited to see how the wetland develops. Supporters, old and new, have donated, and now is a great time to join them. The purchase of Walker ...
  • Wetland restoration and an elusive little fish June 24, 2019 Aquasave-Nature Glenelg Trust ecologists Lauren Brown and Nick Whiterod (with help from Ruan Gannon and Dan Macleod) have successfully completed the first survey of Australian Mudfish in the South East since 2010-11 (Mudfish monitoring – 2019 report). But first, some background to the story of the elusive Australian Mudfish (Neochanna cleaveri). Back in 1974 someone caught a ...
  • Three years on – a lot to celebrate at Mount Burr Swamp Restoration Reserve June 24, 2019 Return water, and wildlife will follow! It’s not quite that simple, but restoration efforts over the last three years at NGTs Mount Burr Restoration Reserve have re-created wetland habitat for many important fauna species. The “Sunday Mail”, recently published an article featuring NGT’s Bryan and Rose (see below), highlighting the recent discovery of the Southern Bent-wing Bat (Miniopterus ...
  • Walker Swamp recovering June 24, 2019 Walker Swamp is slowly recovering. Everywhere there are signs of regeneration. Here are just a few photos of how the wetland is responding.
  • The fascinating world of fungi! June 24, 2019 Saturday 8th June – Our fungi journey began on a beautiful morning in the local Bolwarra bushland in Victoria. Nicole and I joined the Portland Field Naturalists on a fungi survey led by fungi expert and mycologist, Dr Sapphire McMullan-Fisher. Sapphire introduced us to a wide range of fungi and techniques on how to recognise them. ...
  • Reconciliation Week – green thumbs at Narrawong District Primary School June 24, 2019 Early winter rain and wetter soil created the perfect conditions to plant out the indigenous resource garden at the Narrawong District Primary School. All of the students gave Nature Glenelg Trust’s Lauren K. a helping hand in planting some local and culturally important native species around the beautiful sculpture and paving installed earlier in the ...
  • NGT recognised in the 2019 Glenelg Hopkins Environmental Achievers Awards June 24, 2019 Nature Glenelg Trust received two awards atthe Glenelg Hopkins Environmental Achievers Awards ceremony held recently in Hamilton. We were presented with the Waterways Award for the Walker Swamp project and, in a new category for this year, Lauren Brown’s Mulloway Tagging project received the Innovation Award.  The awards have been running for more than a decade and ...
  • Nick’s Churchill Fellowship begins June 24, 2019 On Wednesday 26th June at 8:15am, I embark on my Churchill Fellowship travels to explore world’s best practice for the translocation of aquatic species (namely small fishes and freshwater crayfish). This is thanks to the generosity of Henry Rischbeith and his family through the Richard Rischbieth Churchill Fellowship. The Fellowship is timely, as translocations are a ...
  • Introducing Dave – volunteer profile June 24, 2019 Volunteer Profile – David Lawson I’m a Taswegian and have been living in the South East of South Australia since 2007 when doctors told me to go somewhere warmer for my arthritis. You don’t get any snow here, but I’ve found the weather in the South East to be similar to the north-west coast of Tasmania. I’m ...
  • Walker Swamp update – making progress in fundraising, and a great time to get on board! June 7, 2019 It has been a couple of weeks since the last update, but thanks to the fantastic support of dozens of donors we are steadily moving towards clearing the land-purchase debt for Walker Swamp. and the live tally is … Everyone who has contributed to the purchase of Walker Swamp (and their families) is on the invitation list ...

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