Annual environmental water priorities in the Murrumbidgee catchment

This year, managed watering events will aim to restore a more natural flow pattern to support a robust food web, other system functions and provide connections between the river and floodplain wetlands to aid in the movement of essential nutrients and native fish.

Priorities for 2019–20

In the Murrumbidgee catchment, warmer and drier-than-average conditions are forecast for the coming year with the possibility of wetter conditions as the season progresses. This year managed watering events will focus on maintaining drought refuge habitat for southern bell frogs, native fish, waterbirds and other aquatic species.

Water managers plan to supplement existing system flows to provide the maximum benefit to plants and animals. Watering events will aim to restore a more natural flow pattern to support a robust food web and other system functions. Water will be managed to provide essential connections between the river and floodplain wetlands to aid in the movement of essential nutrients and native fish.

The management of water for the environment provides flexibility to respond to natural events that may occur during the year.

Further details on watering priorities for 2019–20 can be found in the Annual Environmental Watering Priorities 2019–20 (PDF 2.7MB).

Highlights from 2018–19

During 2018-19, DPIE’s water for the environment program worked with the Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder to deliver around 130 gigalitres of water for the environment to Yanga National Park and North Redbank wetlands.

Water for the environment flows were also delivered in the lower Murrumbidgee improving native fish habitat following record heat wave conditions and an associated fish kill at Redbank weir pool.

Water was also used to maintain refuge habitats in the Murrumbidgee and Coleambally irrigation areas, Gayini Nimmie-Caira and Junction (Murrumbidgee and Murray) wetlands.