14017: Project Palomino: restoring the Wungong River

    The Wungong River was historically a series of discontinuous wetlands formed by runoff from the Darling Range. This was altered by early pioneers who channeled the watercourse to create a drainage system, minimising seasonal flooding in the area. This drastically changed the ecology of the system and had severe impacts on flora and fauna inhabiting the area.

    The Wungong River is both culturally and ecologically significant and the health of this system ultimately affects the Southern, Canning and Swan Rivers.

    As well as habitat loss caused by drainage construction, neighbouring land use, weeds and declining water quality are serious threats to the health of the Wungong River.

    The Palomino Reserve is vested with the City of Armadale and covers a 1.6km stretch of the Wungong River. Since 1999 the Armadale Gosnells Landcare Group (AGLG) have worked with the Palomino Reserve Catchment Group and the City of Armadale to restore the area through weed control and the planting of over 90,000 native seedlings. This work has seen the area transform from a denuded stretch of river with few remaining trees to an area that provides food and habitat for local aquatic and terrestrial fauna through a committed revegetation program and weed control. In recent years two large projects have been carried out in the area to actively improve water quality and wildlife habitat through the creation of artificial damp lands.

    This project is situated between the two large projects, enhancing the ecological corridor that is actively being created, and improving the health of the river. The project will deliver excellent weed control across the site in conjunction with ongoing weed control carried out by AGLG across the wider Palomino Reserve. 5000 local native seedlings will be installed in the area creating a variety of habitats and improve ecological functions.

    This includes:

    • Shaded areas along one section of the bank of the Wungong, creating habitat for native fish and excluding the introduced gambusia (which require open waters)
    • Planting up natural billabong areas creating breeding habitat for frogs and providing water filtration from farm run-off through nutrient stripping
    • Dense shrubby areas for native birds such as the native blue wren
    • Variety of planting within the seasonally flooded area which will provide food and habitat for a variety of birds, invertebrates and herpetofauna.

    Temporary fencing will be constructed to delineate the revegetated area from the track used by local horse riders and walkers.

    Investment: $ 15 000
    In-kind contribution: $ 18 900
    Delivery organisation: Armadale Gosnells Landcare Group
    Project duration: January 2015 - June 2016
    Location: Corner Lake and Ranford Road, Lot 8003, Reserve number R36339

    Project partners

    City of Armdale

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