Water Technology has recently finalised the design and construction of the Muddy Creek fishway with GHCMA, VicRoads, Catchment Health Engineering, ARI, Kingfisher Research and Downryte Excavations.
Water Technology completed a functional design for the Muddy Creek fishway at Yulecart, developed tender documentation and assessment, provided assistance during construction and liaised with landholders prior to, during and post construction.
The Muddy Creek culverts at Yulecart were 4.8m elliptical corrugated iron. The culverts required refurbishment due their age and structural stability. It was determined a concrete lining was the most appropriate solution for the culvert refurbishment and Water Technology assisted VicRoads to size the refurbished culvert.
Prior to works it was unlikely fish passage was possible through the culverts. VicRoads expressed their wish to improve this, by allowing fish passage though the refurbished culverts once the concrete lining was complete. During pre-construction fish surveys total of 1187 fish and freshwater crayfish were caught representing 10 species.
Three of the species surveyed are known to migrate and need fishways to facilitate these migrations, including Tupong that need to travel to the estuary to complete their life cycle.
Three of these species are listed with under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC), two Growling grass frogs were also witnessed during the survey, bring the number of EBC listed species to four.
As a result, a rock ridge fishway was designed and constructed to generate a backwater of low velocity water through the culverts allowing fish access. The project was an excellent example of communication and cooperation. The site was left with a functioning fishway which was utilised by several fish immediately after opening.