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Survey monitors project sucess

Riverina Local Land Services is working with farmers, Landcare and government agencies to improve the riparian zone along Adjungbilly Creek which is home to endangered Macquarie Perch and Booroolong Frog.

Recently, Riverina Local Land Services and Riverina Highlands Landcare Network (RHLN) worked with NSW Department of Primary Industries Fisheries and NSW Office of Environment and Heritage to conduct follow up surveys along the creek in search of these species.

Twelve established fish monitoring sites were sampled on the creek and its tributaries using electrofishing, fish traps and fyke netting.

A total of 177 fish were captured which is down from the 2013 survey when a total of 342 fish where captured.  Macquarie Perch were found at three of the sites ranging in size from 8cm to 20cm.

Luke Pearce, Fisheries Manager from NSW Department of Primary Industries said the lower number was a result of recent rain making the creek level high, in turn making conditions for sampling difficult.

“The good news is the total distribution of Macquarie Perch within Adjungbilly Creek has remained stable since 2013 and there are signs of successful recruitment of fish into the population in both the 2016 and 2015 breeding season” said Luke.

Other aquatic species that were found included the Platypus, Murray Crayfish, Alpine Crayfish and River Black Fish.

Spotlighting for the Booroolong Frog was also a success with the endangered frogs found at both frog monitoring sites which is great news for the Adjungbilly community.  Booroolong Frogs of varying age groups were identified indicating that the species is doing well due to the high quality habitat along the lower section of the Adjungbilly Creek.

To help maintain and improve the condition of the creek, Riverina Local Land Services in partnership with RHLN, has been working with local landholders to remove stock access to the water, replant the riparian zone and undertake pest and weed control.

These works will help to secure and improve the habitat necessary for the conservation of Macquarie Perch and Booroolong Frog as well as contributing to improved water quality and reduced erosion in the catchment.

This project is supported by Riverina Local Land Services, through funding from the NSW Government’s Catchment Action NSW, and a partnership program with the NSW Environmental Trust and Office of Environment and Heritage Save Our Species Program.

Captions:

1: Macquarie Perch were found at three of the sites along the Adjungbilly Creek ranging in size from 8cm to 20cm.

2: Fish along the creek were captured using fish traps, fyke netting and electrofishing

Media contact: Hannah Ritchie, Riverina Local Land Services, 0448 851 224