Call to clean up Blackmans Swamp Creek choked by reeds and rubbish

PAST FISHING SPOT: Orange Trout Acclimatisation Society member Kevin Laughton wants to see Blackman's Swamp Creek cleaned up. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0703creek1

PAST FISHING SPOT: Orange Trout Acclimatisation Society member Kevin Laughton wants to see Blackman's Swamp Creek cleaned up. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0703creek1

A KEEN fisherman has pushed for the clean-up of Blackman’s Swamp Creek in Moulder Park following the dumping of more rubbish.

Orange Trout Acclimatisation Society member Kevin Laughton has inspected the waterway several times and says it is choked with reeds and rubbish, including shopping trolleys, bottles and plastic.

“You couldn’t see it [the creek],” he said. 

He spoke during Orange City Council’s meeting on Tuesday night, asking for councillors to consider clearing the creek and deepening it in places.

“The walkways and bridges are great, but it’s not accessible to wildlife because it’s all choked up,” he said.

“It should be the jewel in the crown.”

Mr Laughton remembered the creek as a popular fishing spot in the 1930s and 40s when weirs were constructed and trout were released.

Residents surrounding Moulder Park have raised the matter on several occasions, with Clean Up Australia volunteers and independent groups dedicating time to tidy the area, only to have more rubbish dumped.

Orange City Council spokesman Allan Reeder said Moulder Park was more susceptible because it was the closest to the supermarkets. 

“Crews respond as promptly as they can amongst other duties to remove the trolleys,” he said.

“Council staff and open space maintenance contractors regularly visit the park, emptying bins, removing litter and undertaking repairs and maintenance to park assets.”

Mr Reeder said community groups had different views about what a healthy creek should look like. 

“Fishing enthusiasts like freely-flowing, quick-moving water with deeper pools and weirs where introduced species of fish can be caught,” he said.

“Other groups who are concerned about water quality, native species and the detrimental impacts of introduced species, prefer slow-moving water where vegetation such as bulrushes and reeds are planted to restrict the movement of water so that sediment can settle and sunlight can have an impact.”

The creek will form part of the Moulder Park master plan, which is yet to be adopted.

A report on the impact of removing vegetation from the creek will be brought to a meeting later in the year.

danielle.cetinski@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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