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19 Oct 2017

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Violet Vale Station Wetland Surveys 2017

Project summary

This is the second survey of aquatic fauna of the expansive floodplain wetlands on Violet Vale Station. Typically, wetlands are diverse ecosystems that support high levels of biodiversity and perform essential ecosystem services. Importantly, wetlands act as nursery grounds for a number of commercially important fish species such as Barramundi; sustaining natural recruitment and also recreational and commercial fishing industries. 
This aquatic ecosystems are vulnerable to degradation by feral herbivores such as cattle, pigs and horses as well as invasion by semi-aquatic and aquatic weeds. It is important to establish a baseline and ongoing inventory of species inhabiting the wetlands to monitor the effect of management actions such as destocking, exclusion fencing and weed removal. 
The project will document the aquatic fauna of the area and fill in knowledge gaps surrounding aquatic biodiversity in the northern section of the Normanby catchment. We will again use fyke nets plan to use a suite as the primary survey technique and seine netting, and frame netting and electrofishing where appropriate. Survey methods will be designed to maximise species detection and will be based on repeated deployment and effort as per the previous expedition to aid in before and after fencing comparisons of the aquatic fauna assemblages. 

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