After I put up the SOS about Gresswell Lakes on Friday morning, that
afternoon I was able to contact staff of the Dept.of Sustainability and
Environment and tell them of my concerns for the future of the Little
Bitterns and their young.
A staff member very kindly spent a lot of time telephoning, and this
morning took the trouble to inform me that contact had been made with
the Urban and Regional Land Corporation's Project Manager (Mr Rob
Vines), and with staff from Darebin City Council's Engineering and
Drainage, Planning, and Environmental Management Department.
As a result I learn that:
1. The capacity of the wetland is adequate for all the property
developments in its catchment, and the new Lancaster Gate estate will
not cause any enlargement.
2. The problem is apparently a fault in the inlet system and a new
pipe will have to be constructed.
3. Wetland experts from The Dept of Sustainability and Latrobe
Wildlife Reserve will be consulted.
4. The URLD and Darebin Council are fully aware of the site's
5. Construction is not due to start before 6 or 8 weeks.
I understand that the water-level in the lakes may have to be lowered
'a foot or so',
for work to take place, but the lakes will not be drained.
My sincere thanks to all who sent me good advice about whom to
contact, and to all those who telephoned Darebin Council to express
their concern and ask for further details. I am told you all made a
The words 'community consultation' have been heard and I hope that
all local 'Birding-ausers' will continue to keep a wary eye on the area
- and to let Darebin Council know of your concerns, by letter, phone or
e-mail. There are good birds in the Habitat Link, Gresswell Forest and
on Gresswell Hill - and all these areas are in environmental danger.
Likewise the Cherry Street Native Grasslands (currently swamped by weeds
Thankyou all again.
Footnote - Mike Carter informs me that he doesn't believe in the
Garganey record. If anyone can prove him wrong, I hope they will inform
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