World Wetlands Day shines light on Lake Mac jewels

Lake Macquarie City Council

Natural Assets Officer Brooke Laforest in a section of the lagoon wetlands under rehabilitation.jpg

Belmont Lagoon is being preserved as an oasis for flora and fauna as part of a three-year wetlands rehabilitation project.

The project’s benefits to the surrounding environment are in the spotlight today as part of World Wetlands Day.

Lake Macquarie City Council Natural Assets Officer Brooke Laforest said a dedicated team had unearthed 300kg of harmful weeds and collected 250kg of rubbish across 4ha of wetland since 2019.

“We’re creating a haven for the fish and bird species that inhabit the area,” Ms Laforest said.

“It’s also known to provide habitat for threatened and migratory species like the curlew sandpiper and the white-throated needletail,” Mrs Laforest said.

Belmont Lagoon forms part of Lake Macquarie’s more than 2000ha of wetlands, which are going from strength to strength thanks to Council’s keen focus on rehabilitation.

World Wetlands Day marks the 51st anniversary of the signing of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Convention) in Iran.

The theme for this year’s event is Wetlands Action for People and Nature, which encourages everyone to help rehabilitate and restore the land.

Landcare Support Officer Elise Budden said team of selfless volunteers are getting their hands dirty at a Landcare project launching at Lakeview Parade, Pelican, today.

“We’re going to be digging up weeds like lantana, bitou bush and coral trees that are threatening the wetlands’ edge and stopping birds such as egrets, terns and herons from seeing predators,” Ms Budden said.

“The site contains habitat which may be used by migratory bird species that fly a long way across the globe.”

Find out how you can volunteer in your local area at lakemacquarielandcare.org.

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