Abbot Bay Catchment

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The Abbot Bay Catchment is one of 51 sub catchments of the larger Burdekin Catchment. The Abbot Bay Catchment covers an area of approximately 1188 square kilometres. This represents less than 1% of the entire Burdekin Catchment.

Subcatchments

Smaller Catchments within the Abbot Bay Catchment include:

Topography

The major water courses of the Abbot Bay Catchment are the Elliot River and Euri Creek. The Elliot River stretches from the south of this catchment off the MT Aberdeen National Park and Pine Hill (624 metres). The Stockyard Creek and Manning Camp Creeks join the Elliot River from the south-west in the vicinity of Mt View (GDA94 MGA Zone 55 593164E 7774580N). Butchers Creek joins the Elliot River from the East in the vicintiy of Glenmore Station (GDA94 MGA Zone 55 591654E 7782252N). Finley Creek drains off the slopes of MT Abbot(1056 metres) and unnamed feature (568 metres) at (GDA94 MGA Zone 55 584910E 7775273N), into the Elliot River 8 kilometres south of the Bruce Highway

Vegetation

Riparian Habitat

The iTRARC analysis indicates that the catchment condition has decreased since the 1970s primarily due to floodplain clearing and an increase in gullying/scalding within the catchment.

more...


Wetlands

The creek systems of this sub-division are ephemeral, only running for short periods after significant rainfall. The coastal freshwater wetlands are also mostly ephemeral or seasonal. Very little is known about these wetlands ecologically, and any permanent waterholes within the creeks are likely small in size and very vulnerable to disturbance. The Directory of Important Wetlands in Australia listing for this area is predominantly based on marine and estuarine wetlands. The freshwater fish fauna of the Don River was surveyed by Hogan and Vallance (1998) in relation to studies examining the possibility of building a water storage on the river. They found that freshwater fish diversity was limited, this probably being attributable to the ephemeral nature of the streams. This area supports a significant horticultural industry, based largely on groundwater extraction. It has and is still being examined for further irrigation development via a channel/pipeline from the Burdekin River. The potential impacts of such development require significant examination but Butler and Lukacs (1998) outlined some issues identified during a preliminary overview of the areas wetlands. Overall, the freshwater wetlands of the area are poorly known, but due to the types of developments that dominate the region (mostly cattle grazing) the departure from natural is considered to be relatively minor.

Abbot Bay wetland condition summary...

Water

SedNet Modelling of Water Quality

The following statistics are summarized from the CSIRO report: Improved SedNet Modelling of Grazng Lands in the Burdekin Catchment by Kinsey-Henderson, A., Sherman, B. and Bartley, R. 2007. This report can be accessed from the report section below.

Model results for the Abbot Bay sub-catchment are summarized as follows:

  • Sub-catchment modelled area 838 sq. km.
  • Source contributions: Hillslope = 70%; Gully = 5%; Streambank = 25%
  • Area of sub-catchment with <50% ground cover: 104 sq. km or 12% of sub-catchment
  • Hillslope sediment supply: 165 kg/ha/yr
  • Total suspended sediment (flow weighted) supply: 72 kt/yr
  • Total suspended supply (flow weighted;normalized to area):828kg/ha/yr
  • Total suspended sediment end-of-subcatchment (flow weighted) yield: 66 kt/yr
  • Event Mean Concentration (EMC - flow weighted): 474 mg/L
  • Mean Annual Flow: 139,025 ML.

Abbot Bay is one of the smaller of the Burdekin sub-catchments (<1000 sq.km). Hillslope erosion is believed to be the major source of sediment and particulate nutrients influencing water quality within this sub-catchment. Loss of sediment and associated particulate nutrients from hillslopes (supply) is considered to be relatively low at 165 kg/ha/yr compared to other sub-catchments within the greater Burdekin catchment. The proportion of land with less than 50% ground cover is also relatively low at 12%. The moderate concentrations of sediments are a consequence of the low rainfall and thus, low mean annual flow within this system.

Water Quality Monitoring

Water Quality Sampling Sites

The monitoring site in the Abbot Bay (Euri Creek) catchment is located at the Bruce Highway and has been sampled by the BDTNRM Volunteers program for 2 years (2005/06 and 2006/07 wet seasons). The catchment area for this monitoring site is 421 sq km, of which 82.2% is used for grazing. Suspended sediment concentrations for Euri Creek have been moderate (mean concentration for samples collected of 157 mg/L) compared to other sampling sites located on the coastal plan in the Burdekin Region. The flow-weighted annual load for Euri Creek has been calculuted at 12,900 tonnes using the 2 years of monitoring data which is considerably lower the annual load predicted by the SedNet model of 39,400 tonnes.


Environmental Uses and Values

The following summary of environmental uses and values is based on information extracted from the following reports: Social, Economic, Cultural and Environmental Values of Streams and Wetlands in the Burdekin Dry Tropics Region by Greiner, R and Hall, N. 2006 and Burdekin Basin Draft Water Resource Plan by Queensland Dept. of Natural Resources, Mines and Water, 2006. The Greiner and Hall 2006 report may be accessed from the report section below.


Definition of Environmental Values in the Queensland Water Quality Guidelines 


Fish.jpg Aquatic Ecosystems:

Primary Industry & other Industrial Uses

Irrigator.jpg Irrigation:

Irrigation for horticulture in the eastern fringe of the Abbot Bay catchment.


Cow.jpg Stock Watering:

Water supply for production of healthy livestock.


Pollution.jpg Industrial Uses:

Abbot Point Coal mine.


Feet.jpg Cultural and Spirtual:

Custodial use of water resources by ? traditional owners.

Landuse

Mining




Maps

Please feel free to download the maps in the following formats:

Photos

Reports

Data

coming soon...