2010 Field Trips


Coast to Coast 2010 Field Trips Adelaide (Wednesday 22nd September 2010)

Download a full agenda of each trip.
Below is the description prior to each trip.

  1. Coorong and Lower Lakes: Registraton Code-FT1
  2. Southern  Coast: Registraton Code: FT2
  3. Metropolitan Adelaide Beaches: Registraton Code-FT3
  4. Northern Coast: Registraton Code-FT4

1. Coorong and Lower Lakes: FT1

Listen to the trip description by Arron Broom

The Coorong and Lower Lakes, the last stop for the great Murray  Darling Basin, is an internationally recognised wetland with significant  ecological, cultural and social values. This iconic and mystical place
supports tens of thousands of migratory and resident waterbirds, is central  to the Ngarrindjeri way of life, is a congregation of recreation activity,  and above all, is where our greatest river system meets the sea. This dynamic
confluence with the coast is under considerable threat. It is understood that  the Lower Lakes haven’t been this low since sea levels rose some 7,000 years  ago. Salinity is climbing, acidification is occurring and inflow is now less
than evaporative loss. Changing climate, sea level rise and continued lack of  freshwater inflow may compound what is already a crisis.

This full day field trip will personally introduce you to some of these values and threats and you will get nice sandwiches at Goolwa. Leading environmental  managers and scientists will provide technical insight at important monitoring and habitat sites along the way and the ‘Long Term Plan for the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth’ will be explained. Some local knowledge will also tune us in to the day to day concerns.

Arron Broom
Planning Officer
Coastal Management Branch, Department for Environment and Heritage

2. Southern Coast: FT2

Listen to the trip description by Tony Huppatz
Adelaide’s southern coast extends over 31km from O’Sullivan Beach in the north to Sellicks Beach in the south. This coastline boasts spectacular cliffs, a number of sandy beaches popular with bathers and surfers and clear gulf waters renowned for diving. During our field trip along the southern coast we will hear of coastal issues and current management options from a number of Officers from the Onkaparinga Council, NRM and EPA as well as some local community members.

Our first stop is Sellicks Beach where we’ll learn about the recently completed Sellicks Creek Rehabilitation project which focused on erosion control, reducing sediments discharged to coastal waters and revegetation. This area is a great example of a major watercourse restoration project which shows early indications of water quality improvements, thriving vegetation and a safe and attractive large area of open space with recreational opportunities. At Sellicks Beach we’ll also hear about the biodiversity conservation of coastal cliffs and the nearby dunes.

Stop 2 is Port Willunga where we’ll learn about the Cliff Top Erosion Action Plan which provides a basis for the formulation of risk management measures, including remedial works, to address locations where erosion is considered to be problematic. While here we’ll also take a look at the Port Willunga car park which has undergone an award winning redevelopment to enhance the quality of stormwater runoff, with a design that reflects the
surrounding coastal environment and draws inspiration from the Aboriginal history of the site. Port Willunga is also an important site for Hooded Plovers which are rated as vulnerable in South Australia, with less than 70 left
on the Fleurieu Peninsula. We’ll hear of the Hooded Plover program aimed at protecting this vulnerable species and if we’re lucky, we’ll spot the Hooded Plovers or perhaps get to view a nest if the time is right!

The final stop for this field trip will be South Port Noarlunga where we’ll learn about the local Coastcare group’s initiatives such as dune planting, weed removal and general protection of endangered plant species within the dunes. Work in this area has been highly recognised with the local community, in partnership with the Onkaparinga Council, winning Keep Australia Beautiful’s 2010 Australia’s Cleanest Beach award. At this stop we’ll find out how a broad network of community groups, the City of Onkaparinga and state government agencies work together to ensure the overall sustainability of this unique part of Australia. Before departing, we’ll stop by the South Port Surf Life Saving Club for a quick drink and some nibbles.

Darren Green
Coastal Environmental Protection Officer
Environment Protection Authority

3. Metropolitan Adelaide Beaches: FT3

Listen to the trip description by Rob Tucker
Metropolitan Adelaide has 28km of sandy beaches. The challenge is how can we sustainably manage the coast in an economic manner. It is not just a question of managing beaches by taking sand from elsewhere;
we have to look at better ways to recycle sand, and also to slow the sand movement down. This may inevitably result in the use of some structures, but not necessarily.

A strategy was approved by Government in 2005 to manage the beach system. A sand transfer infrastructure to pump sand from Semaphore South to Kingston Park in four cells over 22kilometres is currently
in the tendering stage. An offshore breakwater near Semaphore was completed in 2009 to slow the sand movement in that area, to collect sand to be used in replenishing a seriously eroding area just south of it, and to recycle sand further south.

Elsewhere a few strategically placed geotextile groyne structures have been built to maintain a walkable beach at most tides. New sand sources are being investigated to maintain beaches against loss due to climate change. These management challenges will be observed and explained in a field trip taking in the full length of the Adelaide coastline.

Rob Tucker

Project Manager
Adelaide’s Living Beaches Project

4. Northern Adelaide field trip: FT4

This trip will visit two very different areas of northern Adelaide, with a wide range of different coastal challenges and opportunities.

The Port Adelaide area was highlighted in the 2009 Commonwealth Report “Climate Change Risks to Australia’s Coast” as one of the most ‘at risk’ coastal areas in Australia. Here you will hear
about the local council’s sea level mapping project and the development of strategic actions to deal with significant challenges: flood plains, power stations, ports, residential areas and more.

Moving north we will go through the Barker Inlet Wetlands, 172 ha fed by four urban stormwater systems, improving the water quality before discharging into Barker Inlet. Other benefits of these wetlands include flood mitigation, environmental tourism and education opportunities, diverse habitat for birds, removal of litter and debris by gross pollutant traps, and the provision of tidal areas for mangrove accession and samphire regeneration.

Further north we will visit the Port Gawler Conservation Park, which has important ecosystem values, identified through a Coastal Action Plan. Unfortunately this area has become degraded and undervalued, with significant sociological challenges that are being addressed through partnership projects.

Alex Gaut
Biodiversity Program
Co-ordinator Conservation Council, South Australia