The mighty Murray River is Australia’s longest river with a total length of 2,520 kilometres and spanning three states – Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia. On a local level, the Murray River provides the major domestic water supply for over 1.5 million households across the three States.
The Catchment Conservation program is a fun, interactive, outdoor based program where in the field students learn first-hand about their local Catchment, the importance of the Murray River to our local community (from an environmental, social, cultural and economic perspective), the impacts effecting catchment processes and actions we can take to improve ecosystem services.
The Catchment Conservation program is suited to students in Years 5 – 10 and can be tailored to address specific learning and teaching requirements. The program can cater for an introductory session in the classroom followed by a local field excursion, or alternatively the program can be delivered in its entirety in the field (preferably over a two hour session).
Topics which will be covered in this program include:
- What is a catchment, a wetland, and an anabranch/tributary?
- Catchment management;
- Waterway, floodplain and wetland ecology;
- The Murray-Darling Basin;
- The Murray River – its management, values and importance to local communities;
- Water storages – dams, weirs and navigable locks;
- Ecosystems and the diversity of plants and animals within;
- Factors impacting our local catchments including:
- Salinity and water quality
- Pest plants and animals
- Flow and water storage management
- Grazing pressures
- Climate change
- Recreation pressures
These factors can be monitored and assessed in the field with the opportunity to analyse field data back in the classroom.
- Management actions currently in place by management authorities to improve the condition of our local catchments; and
- Management actions that can be undertaken by local communities to improve the condition of our local catchments.
We can provide teachers with learning and assessment activities to aid in the analysis of field data and assist students in developing their own catchment management actions.