Research to boost inlet water quality in the Wilson Inlet giving answers already

Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
The dawn waters of the Wilson Inlet.
Camera IconThe dawn waters of the Wilson Inlet. Credit: Marilyn Miles/Marilyn Miles

The Wilson Inlet catchment is being analysed in a new way to help assess nutrient flow from farms and guide its management.

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulations is conducting the research to predict the potential impacts of changing land uses and climate on the health of the waterway.

The new modelling will provide the basis for a Water Quality Improvement Plan for the inlet.

Nine sites in the catchment are being sampled every fortnight, measuring salinity, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, pH levels, and nutrients.

“DWER’s initial observations are that the highest proportion of nutrients come from the low-lying and artificially drained areas,” DWER’s Karl Hennig said.

“This is likely due to nutrients from agricultural practices directly entering drains and creeks with little vegetation to naturally filter the water.

“Agricultural fertilisers and animal effluent are one of the major sources of nutrients, and the department continues to work with Wilson Inlet Catchment Committee and local farmers to protect waterway health.”

A draft of the Wilson Inlet WQI Plan is expected to be completed in December.

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