Pollution of Water Systems

Threatened Burrowing Crayfish of

West Gippsland

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All photographs © Dr. Beverley Van Praagh, Invert-Eco unless otherwise stated. No image may be saved, copied, reproduced or distributed without prior permission from the copyright owner. 

Warragul Burrowing Crayfish

What Threats Do They Face? Or Why Are They In Trouble? Many threatening processes occur within the small area that is home to the Warragul Burrowing Crayfish. Threats include the development of land for housing and industry, and some agricultural practices. This means that without our help and protection, they are vulnerable to extinction, particularly since a large portion of their habitat occurs within areas currently being developed for urban expansion. Burrowing crayfish are very dependent on soil moisture and local wetland systems for survival. Changes in drainage, stream channelization, water pollution, soil compaction and removal of vegetation all contribute to loss and degradation of their habitat. Agricultural Threats
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Channelization of Streams and Draining Paddocks

Alters drainage patterns, water flow

and dries suitable habitat

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Dam Construction

Floods suitable habitat

and removes habitat

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Removal of Native Vegetation

Dries out soil, leads to erosion, exposes

burrows and alters soil microclimate

Trampling by Stock

Causes stream bank erosion, vegetation loss,

soil compaction or pugging and

destruction of burrows

Pollution of Water Systems

Pesticides and fertilisers poison crayfish

and reduce water quality

Cultivation and Intensive Farming

Removes habitat, destroys burrows

and alters soil condition

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Urbanisation Threats
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Wetland and Retardation Basin Construction

Inundates crayfish habitat

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Road and Housing Construction

Effects water quality and quantity,

changes catchment, removes habitat

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Altered Draining Systems
Water Pollution

Road and housing run-off can lead to siltation

and reduction in water quality

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Road and Housing Construction Cultivation and Intensive Farming Removal of Native Vegetation Wetland and Retardation Basin Construction Dam Construction Channelization of Streams and Draining Paddocks Trampling by Stock Altered Drainage Systems Removal of Native Vegetation