revisiting Salt Creek

We stayed  a night at Salt Creek in the Coorong on our return  to Adelaide after spending  a few days on the Mornington Peninsula in Melbourne with family.   The overnight stay allowed me to do some   photography on an early morning poodlewalk around the eroded calcified limestone  formations  at the Salt Creek outlet and the South Lagoon.



The South  Lagoon runs from Parnaka Point to south of Salt Creek and  I was guided by this report by the Goyder Institute  which had highlighted the decrease  in waterbird abundance in the Coorong. It stated that this decrease was been associated with a recent shift from an aquatic plant-dominated to an algal-dominated system. The algae is preventing crucial aquatic plants, like Ruppia tuberosa, from completing their lifecycle and is interfering with the waterbirds’ ability to feed.


I noticed an abundance and wide distribution of the  filamentous algae in Salt Creek and  in the South Lagoon near the Salt Creek outlet.

My understanding is that the overabundance of algae  plant growth is a symptom of excessive nutrients (phosphorus and nitrogen) in the creek.  These nutrients probably  come from the runoff from the  crop fields and  the flows in the South East Drainage network.  The algae thrives off the phosphorus released when the herbicides such as glyphosate (in Monsanto’s Roundup) is sprayed on certain soils.


The South East Flows Restoration Project (SEFRP) is designed to  direct freshwater from the Blackford Drain  into the South Lagoon via the Morella Basin and Salt Creek. Currently the Blackford Drain  discharges  into the  ocean near  Kingston.

These  increased fresh water flows into the South Lagoon aim to  reduce  the  high salinity levels in the hypersaline South Lagoon that are the result of  the reduced Murray River flows into the Coorong.

After breakfast we  moved on  so that I could  explore and scope possible sites around the Long Point area for the Our Waters project. The sites I’d identified were tentatively,  the old fishing shacks along the Karoo Road and  Dodd Landing Point (for the Maria Massacre)

My interest is the hangings of the aboriginal men by the state given that Australia’s official silence about the frontier conflict and wars is difficult to understand and is probably due  to our institutional  racism.  The common view is that this conflict  was what international lawyers used to call private warfare, more akin to banditry and crime arising from personal revenge, as well as trespass, theft and disputes about women, rather than bout land, about ownership and control of the country.

I discovered that there is no public road to  the Dodd Landing Point and so public access  is going to be difficult. Access by boat is probably the best option.



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