Current water releases for the environment

Water for the environment to be released in the Macalister River – winter fresh

A water release is happening in the Macalister River from 8 to 21 of August, 2019.

We closely monitor seasonal conditions and the environmental requirements and adapt our approach as necessary. For example, in response to the very dry conditions in Autumn 2019, we delivered lower flows to the Macalister River, instead on a usual autumn high flow. This was provided to maintain the baseline health of the river and to help our aquatic life through the blue-green algae outbreak that had occurred.

Recent rainfall has led to natural flushing flows in both the Thomson and the Latrobe Rivers. Inflows have increased substantially into Lake Glenmaggie and this release is an opportunity to help support the river with a winter high flow event that is hasn’t had this season.

What are the environmental benefits of this water release?

This fresh is important to help Australian Bass, move out of the river into oceans as part of their breeding and to provide wetting for vegetation to support growth.

What’s happening?

  • Water will be released from Lake Glenmaggie into the Macalister River
  • The releases will be controlled to increase and decrease gradually
  • There will be no impact on the security of water supply or access to irrigation water
  • Weather conditions are monitored before and during the releases. Water orders are adapted accordingly (eg: orders are reduced or cancelled if significant rainfall occurs).

The start and end dates, expected flow rates and estimated river heights for the water release are outlined below:

Start and end date of water release *: 8 to 21 August
Highest flow expected: 700 megalitres per day
Dates when the flow is highest *: 12 to 14 August
Estimated water level in river during highest flow: 0.7m Macalister River, below Lake Glenmaggie
*Note: these dates may change due to natural events or operational issues. This is an estimate and may vary slightly depending in inflows from tributaries.

This is an estimate and may change slightly due to natural losses in these rivers and travel time on the water release. This is particularly the case for lower sections of this river.

The water release will be well below minor flood levels and will not impact on properties or assets next to these rivers.

Watering the Heyfield Wetlands

The Heyfield Wetlands will receive its biggest inflow of water this August as part of a Water for the Environment initiative.

Up to 10 megalitres in total will be delivered to the wetlands over the week of 12 to 16 of August, 2019. Flows will be up to 2.5 megalitres per day and will be delivered to the dry western ponds, from the Thomson River system.

Visitors to the wetlands during this time are urged to take care around the wetlands and keep out of restricted areas. Please keep dogs on a leash.

You can read more about this water release in our latest news section.

If you would like to receive notifications of future water releases for the environment please complete this form.

Reflections at Heyfield Wetlands
Heyfield Wetlands

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