Murray Lakes

To: <>
Subject: Murray Lakes
From: "David Kowalick" <>
Date: Fri, 8 Aug 2008 12:50:36 +0930
According to the latest info regarding the lakes that I have read the
problem is beyond the normal cycles of drought and flood. I have been to the
lakes several times in the last 6 months and it is a sad sight indeed. The
water in the lakes has retreated up to a kilometre form the shore. 


The effects are wide and various. Small native fish dependent of the reeds
for cover and breeding are severely affected. Some of these native fish are
facing extinction in the wild and there have been recent efforts to breed
them in captivity with the intention of releasing the fish back into the
lake when, if ever, they are filled again. Crakes and rails have all but
disappeared from the lakes as they have to stray too far from cover to find
food. In the Coorong the lower lakes have always been hyper-saline but the
area of hyper-saline water is increasing and the levels of some of the lakes
are dropping. Unfortunately the Fairy terns which breed in the area (their
most important breeding ground in the country) have failed to successfully
breed due to a combination of predation by foxes which have been afforded
access by dropping water levels and loss of feeding grounds. See for details.


The bottom line is quite simply if the water usage upstream is not changed
the effects downstream will mean diaster for some species. 


David Kowalick


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