New puddles in the landscape… filling in the view

One of my favourite things to do has always been to get to higher ground and take in the view. And one of my favourite views is from the Grampians Road, on the slopes of Mount Abrupt (Mud-dadjug) at the site of a recent landslide. It’s a great place to take in the upper Wannon floodplain (Brady Swamp) and it’s a view I take in at least once a month during winter and spring. On a clear day you can make out some of the wetlands in the Walker Swamp Restoration Reserve and this year some new water features have appeared, marked by the arrows below.

The upper Wannon floodplain viewed from Mount Abrupt (Mud-dadjug). Arrows indicate recently rehabilitated wetlands.

Under the Grampians/Glenelg landscape wetland restoration program, funded by the Victorian Government’s Biodiversity Response Planning program, we recently breathed some life (in the form of retained water) back into some long artificially drained wetlands. The works were only completed in June and by August, the wetlands had filled up and they are now visible from my favourite viewing platform.

While the impetus for hydrological restoration of wetlands lies in how quickly they respond, the feeling of walking through what was only last year still a dry paddock and seeing waterbirds with their chicks is something that never ceases to amaze me.

The view from ground level at one of the recently rehabilitated and recently filled wetlands.

An equally good vantage point for the other side of the range, looking over Bryan and Mahoney’s swamps, is the Piccaninny (Baingugg). It’s a nice, family friendly walk, and a great place to spot orchids. I haven’t been up there yet this year, but with orchids appearing and the wetlands being full, it must just be time for another walk.

Mahoney’s Swamp and Bryan Swamp in front of the Victoria Range, viewed from the Piccaninny (Baingugg), the view back in September 2016.

Wetland restoration works in this update were funded by the Victorian Government’s Biodiversity Response Planning program.

Lachlan Farrington