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Council calling for community assistance in investigating Shoalhaven River Estuary

Shoalhaven City Council will be hosting a Community Science Field Day to learn more about the Shoalhaven River Estuary on Saturday 23 May.

The event, to be held at the River Road Reserve Boat Ramp, Shoalhaven Heads, will be used to gain further information on the lower estuary.

Council and the NSW State Government have commissioned experts from the Water Research Laboratory at the University of New South Wales to investigate options for improving flows.

A key part of this study is to work with the local community to gain feedback, advice and input on preferred ways forward.

Mayor, Joanna Gash said as part of the Community Science Day a field booth will be set up to allow the community to share their knowledge and ask questions of the scientific experts.

“The ongoing shoaling of the Shoalhaven Estuary impacts on the local economy, water based activities and the amenity of Shoalhaven Heads village,” said Clr Gash.

“To explore options to prevent this section of the river becoming a shoaled backwater Council is currently conducting a scientific study looking at both the causes and possible solutions for the problem.

“Scientific experts from the university will be onsite to seek feedback from the community and answer any questions about the study.”

“Further to this information packs on the study will be provided and questionnaires distributed while computer animations of the region, large maps and an interactive demonstration model of the area will all be on display.”

The Mayor said that as part of the study hundreds of oranges will be released and tracked throughout the day to provide further information about flows in the area.

Mayor, Gash said community assistance would be required to collect tagged oranges within the Shoalhaven estuary, Berry’s canal and Crookhaven Estuary. 

“As bizarre as it sounds, the oranges act as ideal drifter drogues floating with the current and will be released on the ebb and flood tides. 

“Once found the location and time should be reported to the field booth with the results to be analysed throughout the day to track flows in the river.”

Feedback from the community event will guide the scientific process.  Future community meetings are also being planned to detail the study’s findings and next steps.

If you would like to assist in organising the day or for more information please contact Dr William Glamore of the Water Research Laboratory at w.glamore@unsw.edu.au or Isabelle Ghetti, isabelle.ghetti@shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au, Natural Resources and Floodplain Manager at Shoalhaven City Council.

The project is jointly funded by the NSW Government (NSW DPI Fisheries) and Shoalhaven City Council.

 

CONTACT: Mayor, Joanna Gash - 0427 160 170

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