Cathie Creek

Physical characteristics

Latitude (ºS)-31.55
Longitude (ºE)152.86
Catchment area (km2)1105.5
Estuary area (km2)1,213.7
Estuary volume (ML)38379.5
Average depth (m)41.1
Roy et al. (2001) classification5IV/8/C
Entrance condition6I/(O)
  1. Derived from DECCW (2010) NSW estuaries and coastal catchments spatial database.
  2. Includes area mapped as open water (see note 1), mangrove and saltmarsh areas (Creese R. G., Glasby T. M., West G. and Gallen C. (2009) Mapping the habitats of NSW estuaries. Industry & Investment NSW Fisheries Final Report Series 113. Port Stephens, NSW, Australia.
  3. Based on areas at 0.6 m AHD (Roper T., Creese B., Scanes P., Stephens K., Williams R., Dela-Cruz J., Coade G. and Coates B. (2011) Assessing the condition of estuaries and coastal lake ecosystems in NSW. Office of Environment and Heritage, Sydney).
  4. Estimated by dividing the total volume at 0.6 m AHD by the total surface area of the estuary including mangrove areas but excluding saltmarsh (Roper et al., 2011)
  5. Estuary group: I = oceanic embayment, II = tide dominated estuary, III = wave dominated estuary, IV = intermittently closed estuary V = freshwater bodies
    Estuary type: 1 = ocean embayments, 3 = drowned valley estuary, 5 = barrier estuary, 6 = barrier lagoon, 7 = interbarrier estuary, 8 = saline coastal lagoon, 9 = small coastal creeks, 11 = brackish barrier lake. Evolution stage: A=youthful, B=intermediate, C=semi-mature, D=mature.
    (P. S. Roy, R. J. Williams, A. R. Jones, I. Yassini, P. J. Gibbs, B. Coates, R. J. West, P. R. Scanes, J. P. Hudson and S. Nichol (2001) Structure and Function of South-east Australian Estuaries. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 53, 351-384)
  6. Entrance conditions: O = open, T = trained, I = intermittent.

Tidal prism

The volume of water moving past a fixed cross section during each flood tide or ebb tide (i.e. slack water to slack water), is referred to as the tidal prism of an estuary.

The following table shows the measured tidal prism at the location specified, along with the tidal range for near the measurement site and at Sydney Harbour.

Location:     500m upstream from the entrance on 22/4/82

Tide stateFlow
(106 m3
tidal range (m)
Sydney Harbour
tidal range (m)
Ebb flow0.220.271.34
Flood flow 0.350.311.32

Tidal survey

Tidal surveys measure the hydrodynamic behaviour of an estuary during a full tidal cycle. The parameters measured include velocity, water levels, salinity, temperature and pH.

The following tidal surveys have been undertaken on this estuary. A map shows the location and plots of the flows and water levels for the most comprehensive survey.

Copies of tidal survey reports are available from the Estuary Management Program

DateData collectedFigureReport
Apr 1982Current metering: Line 1 at bridge, Line 2 at Lake Cathie and Line 3 at Lake Innes, eight tideboards, temperature/salinity, bed and suspended sediment samples collected.1988-21.pdfMHL367
Aug 1993 to Sep 1994Lake Cathie and Lake Innes Water Quality Survey 1995.-MHL706

Hydrographic survey

The hydrographic survey provides the depth and physical characteristics of the estuary.

The metadata associated with the survey can be found on the map sheets provided.

Map sheet number DescriptionScale    Size
9320SH1.pdfCathie Creek1:1000318.6kb
9320SH2.pdfCathie Creek1:1000214.1kb
9320SH3.pdfCathie Creek entrance1:1000290.5kb
9332SH1.pdfLake Cathie1:4000260.7kb
9332SH2.pdfLake Cathie1:4000136.8kb
9332SH3.pdfLake Cathie1:4000242.0kb
9332SH4.pdfLake Cathie & Cathie Creek cross sections1:4000361.5kb
9332SH5.pdfLake Cathie & Lake Innes cross sections1:4000316.8kb
9332SH6.pdfLake Innes cross sections1:4000207.4kb
9332SH7.pdfLake Innes cross sections1:4000169.7kb
9332.txtLake Cathie & Cathie Creek xyz dataN/A144.9kb
Page last updated: 26 April 2012