Blitz checks on river health

Albany Advertiser - - NEWS - Saskia Adysti

King River wa­ter­bugs have been put into the spot­light in a na­tional science project which aims to pre­serve and as­sess lo­cal wa­ter­way re­sources.

The Na­tional Water­bug Blitz is a cit­i­zen science project that em­pow­ers all Aus­tralians to ex­plore fresh­wa­ter creeks.

Oyster Har­bour Catch­ment Group and the Great South­ern Science Coun­cil are invit­ing ev­ery­one to join in their Cit­i­zen Science project and look for King River wa­ter­bugs.

The project in­cor­po­rates a free Water­bug Blitz train­ing work­shop and the health of the King River will be com­pared against Aus­tralia’s wa­ter­ways as part of the pro­gram.

Lead sci­en­tist and fresh­wa­ter ecol­o­gist John Good­er­ham said the Water­bug Blitz aimed to as­sess the sta­tus of wa­ter­ways coun­try­wide by sur­vey­ing aquatic macroin­ver­te­brates, known as wa­ter­bugs.

“Wa­ter­bugs are good bi­o­log­i­cal in­di­ca­tors of the state of fresh­wa­ter sys­tems,” he said.

“Some species, such as stone­flies and mayflies, are highly sen­si­tive to pol­lu­tion while oth­ers, in­clud­ing bee­tles and blood­worms, are more tol­er­ant.

“The greater num­ber and va­ri­ety of the more sen­si­tive bugs, the health­ier the water is.”

The King River Water­bug Blitz train­ing work­shop will be held on the King River on Satur­day Novem­ber10, at 11am.

For more in­for­ma­tion con­tact Geral­dine Jan­icke on 0428 414 468 or you can email geral­dine@jan icke.com.au.

Pic­tures: Na­tional Water­bug Blitz

Geral­dine Jan­icke looks for wa­ter­bugs at King River.

A drag­on­fly nymph from King River.

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