Improving the Bull Creek Catchment

An iconic project for improving water quality in the Bull Creek Catchment is underway, converting a 150m stretch of the Brentwood Main Drain into a living stream just before it enters the Canning River at Bateman Park in the City of Melville.

The Bullcreek Catchment has been identified as a priority catchment within the Swan Canning river system.

This catchment is a significant contributor of nutrient and non-nutrient contaminants to the Swan Canning river system, and as such a Water Quality Improvement Plan was developed in November 2012.

The discharge of the Brentwood Main Drain into the Canning River has been identified as a hot spot for poor water quality.

The opportunity for this project arose when a piped section of the Brentwood Main Drain, below Pulo Rd, ruptured.

Instead of replacing the pipe, the concept of removing the pipe and constructing a living stream was proposed to the Water Corporation and agreed to in principle by the project partners.

$300,000 from Caring for our Country (CfoC), $90,000 to date from the Water Corporation, $65,000 to date from City of Melville and $100,000 from the Swan River Trust combined with support from Main Roads, South East Regional Centre of Urban Landcase, and the Friends of Bull Creek Catchment will construct a living stream at the end of the Brentwood Main Drain and incorporates the confluence with the Mandala Cres Branch Drain.

The project will involve removal of 65m of metal pipe that ruptured, and utilise a further 85m of open trapezoidal drain for the creation of the living stream.

The ground will be re-contoured to create benches, three rock riffles will be installed and benches will be revegetated with sedges to increase the interaction time between the storm water and the fringing vegetation.

Approximately 18,000 seedlings will be planted over the 5719m2 reserve.

The works are intended to reduce the velocity of low flows, increase interaction time with the wetland vegetation, which is intended to reduce nutrients and other contaminants from Brentwood Main Drain through physical, chemical and biological processes.

The treatment focus is during low flow conditions.

The restoration works will significantly enhance the habitat value, aesthetics and access for the project site which is currently a highly weed infested and degraded area with no formal public access.

On-ground works have now begun, following site investigations and a Noongar smoking/cleansing ceremony of the site.

Traditional materials were also collected by local Noongars before site clearing occurred, for use in artwork, ceremonies, traditional tools and for educational purposes.