I've written about the shameful state of Mutton Cove Conservation Reserve on previous posts and sadly its pitiable plight is even worse than the last time I visited it.
Mutton Cove, Le Ferve Peninsular - a conservation reserve for piles of dumped rubble, pools covered in algae, weeds, salt, massive high voltage overhead power wires, ramshackle fencing and degraded pathways... apart from that it's a mess.
My retro-bike with retro weeds, retro track, retro high tension wires and retro just about everything.
Mutton Cove is the only remaining tidal mangrove area on the Le Fevre Peninsular, however some time ago a sea wall was built isolating it from the normal ebb and flow of the tide in the Port River.
Three pipes were laid in the sea wall to allow some water to flow in and out but is far less than that would naturally occur if the sea wall had not been there. The pipes are often silt filled and blocked by debris further restricting the water flow. Consequently the lack of flow has created large areas of algal blooms because the volume of water coming in and out of the estuary is insufficient to flush it clean as would occur in natural tidal system.
Beyond the sea wall... and pathway which is now closed to the public due to erosion... is the Port River. This side is the water starved estuary with its beds of algae and exposed mudflats. Because the water level never reaches the heights and lows of normal tidal flow mangroves and samphire flats have established themselves at a unnaturally lower level.
The solution: The sea wall needs to be removed to allow the Mutton Cove Estuary to regain its natural ebb and flow of the tide. The pathways and run down structures need to be totally upgraded to a normal conservation park standard. Outside the fence that surrounds the reserve is the landscaped and publicly maintained roads and reserves of the Tech Port development that has had millions of dollars invested into it. Inside the fence is a rundown, degraded conservation wasteland 15 km from the centre of the city. It is a disgrace!
My bird survey was the lowest by far in species richness and abundance I've ever recorded. There were no waders, swallows, raptors, gulls or ravens.
Mutton Cove, AU-SA
Jan 30, 2015 2:00 PM - 2:20 PM
Comments: Very low water levels, warm windy day, most pools dry with algae in the wet areas.
Little Egret 1
Pied Stilt 15
Sooty Oystercatcher 1 (on the river side of the sea wall)
Crested Pigeon 6
Singing Honeyeater 2
White-fronted Chat 3
European Starling 60
House Sparrow 20