The failure of a constructed waterway near Donnybrook Rd Mickelham was highlighted in 2018 by Merri Creek Management Committee (MCMC) in our Muddy Merri Troubles Report. Behind the scenes, Melbourne Water have been working to rectify the problems exposed by this waterway. In April 2019 they provided a welcome update to MCMC on the progress of this matter.
Melbourne Water have also acknowledged the widespread occurrence of problematic soils in the Kalkallo Creek sub-catchment of the upper Merri (west of the Hume Highway between Donnybrook Rd and Beveridge). They will require all future developers to address the issue of erosive/dispersive soils earlier in the planning/design process to avoid similar problems occurring.
Read more below for full comments from Melbourne Water and an outline of the rectification options.
Photo: Constructed section of Donnybrook Creek south of Donnybrook Rd, Mickelham, August 2018. The channel is eroding, rilling erosion can be seen under the jute matting (dark lines), the jute matting has been ripped apart by high flows, and the slopes above the jute matting are poorly stabilised and eroding.
Merri Creek Management Committee staff and visitors were amazed to see a Little Button Quail in the native grassland garden at the front of MCMC's office in East Brunswick on 18 January 2019 (photo left). This species is usually associated with more inland grasslands. Its presence, even only for a couple of days, clearly shows the value of planting indigenous plants in suburban gardens.
Around the same time in January a number of people reported hearing the distinctive call of a lone male Eastern Whipbird in nearby Merri Park, Northcote and across Merri Creek in Phillips Reserve south of Blyth St in Brunswick East. It was heard by the Friends of Merri Creek bird surveyers in mid February and was still calling in mid March. Whip Birds are usually associated with wet habitats, including rainforest, eucalypt forest and dense scrub near watercourses along the coastal band of Eastern Australia.
During the 2018 Victorian election campaign, the ALP promised to create the new Upper Merri Parklands. This is a welcome recognition of the importance of the upper Merri and the potential for continuous linked parkland along the entire length of Merri Creek. It reflects a 2016 joint initiative of MCMC, Friends of Merri Creek and Wallan Environment Group for the creation of the Greater Wallan-Merri Park, a living landscape for a liveable Melbourne. We look forward to the new Labor government delivering on this promise as prompt action is needed to secure the park.
Labor's commitment also included funding a feasability study for the Wallan Regional Park. This new park, centered on the former Hernes Swamp, is a key part of our vision for the Greater Wallan - Merri Park. It includes the potential to reinstate parts of the swamp, to create an attractive, biodiverse focus for the park.
(Photo: upper Merri Creek in Merriang.)
Merri Creek Management Committee's (MCMC) ecological restoration work was recognised in an award presented by Melbourne Water in March 2019. The Exceptional Contribution Award was for MCMC's efforts to improve riparian condition through Melbourne Water's River Health Incentives Program.
Ryan van den Hove, a Waterway and Land Officer with Melbourne Water, said it was a pleasure to present MCMC with this award that acknowledges Melbourne Water’s appreciation for the successful, high quality projects delivered by MCMC during the group's long history participating in the program.
In contrast to the good news that Moreland Council is buying land for the Merri Creek corridor, it's hugely disappointing to report that Melbourne Water is planning to sell off Merri Creek land, land designated part of the Merri Creek Marran Baba Parklands. This 'surplus' land, at the rear of an industrial property in Trawalla Ave, Thomastown, is part of an original floodplain reserve owned by Melbourne Water. Over a number of years it was improperly occupied, filled and built on by the adjacent landowners, previous and current. Despite its modified conditon there is no reason it can't be ecologically restored, as has been achieved for many formerly degraded areas along Merri Creek.
|29 Mar 2023;|
09:30AM - 11:30AM
Friends of Coburg Lake & Surrounds Wednesday Working Bee
|31 Mar 2023;|
09:30AM - 11:30AM
Friends of Coburg Lake & Surrounds Weekly Friday Working Bee
|01 Apr 2023;|
10:00AM - 12:00PM
Friends of Merri Park Working Bee
|01 Apr 2023;|
10:00AM - 12:30PM
Waterwatch Waterbug Community Sampling (2023) - Darebin
|01 Apr 2023;|
11:00AM - 02:00PM
Edgars Creek Community Planting Day
|02 Apr 2023;|
10:00AM - 01:00PM
Waterwatch Waterbug community sampling