Programs and initiatives

Caring for Waterhole Creek


The Caring for Waterhole Creek project was a collaboration between EPA and the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA).

Caring for Waterhole Creek involved water quality monitoring at 10 sites within the Waterhole Creek catchment in the Latrobe Valley. Citizen scientists participated in the co-design of the study by contributing local knowledge that identified sampling sites and potential pollutants of interest based on historical land use. Co-monitoring then involved citizen scientists being trained in monitoring techniques, and sampling was undertaken fortnightly. The citizen scientists' sampling was complimented by additional sampling by EPA scientists. Afterwards, EPA and citizen scientists came together to co-interpret the data that had been collected. Initial monitoring included collecting data on water temperature, pH, turbidity, electrical connectivity (as a measure of salinity) and ammonia. Further sampling was conducted to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the environmental health of the creek including:

  • sediment sampling for metals
  • macroinvertebrate (waterbug) sampling and identification
  • environmental DNA (e-DNA) testing for the state and federally listed threatened fish species, dwarf galaxias, Galaxiella pusilla.

The results from the Waterhole Creek project are typical of a waterway surrounded by mixed land uses, including an urban area, like Morwell. Data collected through this project creates valuable baseline information, which will enable EPA to better understand the scale and potential sources of any water quality issues in the future.

More information is available in the Waterhole Creek citizen science project - case study (publication 1697).

Page last updated on 24 May 2018