Fletcher’s Creek is an ephemeral creek system that connects to Tucker’s Creek from the Murray River (within the Lock 10 weir pool) during very high flows (>55,000ML/D). The creek has remained disconnected from the high flows of the Murray River for over two decades due to in-stream infrastructure and lack of suitable high flows in the system. It is located about 6.5 km north-east from Wentworth and 7 km north-west from Dareton.
The disconnection of Fletcher’s Creek has meant vegetation and biodiversity has declined. Just as important, for the local Aboriginal People, the lack of water in the creek and lake has resulted in a disconnection with their culture and obligations to care for Country. This project seeks to reconnect the Creek for multiple social, cultural and ecological outcomes.
The project commenced in September 2017 with an ongoing watering program.
The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and the Group delivered 170 ML of Environmental water to a 5 km stretch of the creek in 2019. Water is proposed to be delivered periodically between early April and late May. This watering is part of a long-term strategy to improve the life and health of this creek.
Monitoring of the 2019 environmental watering event will be undertaken by Barkindji Maraura Elders Environment Team along with OEH staff and Mildura Birdlife. Monitoring will include photo points, vegetation response surveys, opportunistic frog surveys and bird surveys. The site will also be part of the OEH spring waterbird count, with sites set up in 2018 for this purpose.
This project aims to improve the plants along the creek and to encourage waterbirds and frogs to visit and breed. Importantly, this watering project also engages the Barkindji Maraura Elders Environment Team in the management and monitoring of the water, thereby providing connection to Country.