Tumut River Protection Measures Essential

May 16, 2000 Tumut & Adelong Times

Local fishing enthusiasts, concerned at the effect on the district's tourist industry from continuing DLWC works to the Tumut River, are actively lobbying a number of proposals which they consider would alleviate what they regard as significant damage being caused to the river's habitat.

They are calling on the department not to disturb a number of gravel bars, not to rock the inside of bends, and put in baffle zones on long flat fast runs, and off rock walls.

They are also calling on the Tumut River Advisory Committee to endeavour for water release cutbacks to be achieved more slowly, reopen some closed offshoots (such as the "cockatoo" delta), and replace some hardwood trees removed two years ago from the Nimbo anabranch.

The fishing groups State that the gravel bars are a key habitat, and if moved the food chain and ecology of the river would be severely interfered with, and would not recover. "They must not be allowed to he destroyed." last week's Advisory Committee was told.

Amongst those considered particularly significant are the gravel bars just above the Goobragandra confluence, at Mill Angle, both sides of the Old Town Bridge, and at the Riverglade caravan park.

It was also told there was a strong feeling against any rocking of inside beds stemming from the belief it was the "thin edge of the wedge" to rocking both sides, giving a canal effect.

On the subject of a more gradual cutback to releases, the Advisory Committee was told that the fishing groups would like to see this done at 250 megalitres per hour rather than 500 megalitres an hour to avoid tiny bottom dwellers being left high and dry on gravelled sections.

It was also suggested stumps removed from Mill Angle two years ago should be replaced, and a tree on the edge of the main flow in the same vicinity should also be retained.

It was told flows below old Jones' Bridge, Junction Bridge and opposite the racecourse were some of the areas that required baffle-like buffer zones on long fast runs of the river.

It was also suggested that the department advertise its proposed river works a month in advertise its proposed river works a month in advance, explaining when and where the schedule would be carried out, and why they were considered necessary.