Landers Creek

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Subcatchments

Smaller subcatchments within the Landers Creek Catchment include:

  • Expedition Pass Creek
  • Landers Creek

Vegetation

Riparian Habitat

This catchment has undergone a decrease in condition from relatively good (B) to relatively poor (C+), this change is the result of increased gullying/scalding within the catchment.

iTRARC Scores

Catchment Class 2 B
Maximum iTRARC Score 18 (A)
1970s Score 9 (B)
2004 Score 5 (C+)
Reduction in Ecosystem Services No Change
Increase in Potential for Erosion Large
Reasons for Change in Score
  • Increased % gap in headwater streams
  • Large increase the amount of gullying/scalding

TRARC (field survey) scores = No TRARC scores for this subcatchment

Reference:Assessing the condition of Riparian Vegetation in the Burdekin catchment

Wetlands

This creek is poorly known ecologically. The creeks are generally dry sandy channels with limited habitat availability although irrigation tailwater in the lowermost reach of Landers Creek increases stream flow there and has greatly increased the amount of instream vegetation present. Condition is not well known though thought to be similar to adjoining sub-divisions, with only minor departure from natural.

Reference: Assessing the condition of Wetlands in the Burdekin catchment

For more information see Landers Creek wetland condition summary

Water

SedNet Modelling of Water Quality

Model results for the Landers Creek subcatchment are summarized as follows:

  • Subcatchment modelled area 954 sq. km.
  • Source contributions: Hillslope = 79%; Gully = 17%; Streambank = 4%
  • Area of subcatchment with <50% ground cover: 56 sq. km or 6% of subcatchment
  • Streambank sediment supply: 2,350 kg/ha/yr
  • Total suspended sediment (flow weighted) supply: 62.9 kt/yr
  • Total suspended sediment supply (flow weighted; normalized to area): 660kg/ha/yr
  • Total suspended sediment end-of-subcatchment (flow weighted) yield: 61 kt/yr
  • Event Mean Concentration (EMC - flow weighted): 516 mg/L
  • Mean Annual Flow: 118,500ML

Reference: Improved SedNet Modelling of Grazing Land in the Burdekin Catchment

Hillslope erosion is believed to be the major source of sediment and particulate nutrients influencing water quality within the Landers Creek subcatchment (79% of total sediment lost). Loss of sediment from gullies constitutes 17% of total suspended sediment. Flow is relatively low at Landers Creek with moderate to high concentrations of suspended sediments accumulating in the water due to low levels of rainfall in the area.

Water Quality Monitoring

The monitoring sites in the Landers Creek:

  • Eight Mile Creek site is located upstream of the Dalbeg Road and has been sampled by the NQ Dry Tropics Volunteers program for 1 year. The catchment area for this monitoring site is 84 sq km, of which 85.3% is used for grazing and 14.7% for cropping.
  • Expedition Pass Creek site is located on Dalbeg Road and has been sampled by the NQ Dry Tropics Volunteers program for 1 year. The catchment area for this monitoring site is 299 sq km, of which 94.3% is used for grazing and 5.7% for cropping.
  • Landers Creek site is located on Dalbeg Road and has been sampled by NQ Dry Tropics Volunteers program for 2 years. The catchment area for this monitoring site is 766 sq km, of which 91.9% is used for grazing and 4.1% for cropping.

Suspended sediment concentrations have been relatively low (mean concentrations range from 60 to 181 mg/L) compared to other catchments within the Burdekin rangelands. These concentrations appear to be lower than predicted by the SedNet model, although additional monitoring is required to validate this conclusion.

Relevant information of Water Quality Monitoring in the Lower Burdekin River Basin:

Environmental Uses and Values

Aquatic Ecosystems

The aquatic ecosystem values of Landers Creek subcatchment are poorly known but, while considered to be Slightly to Moderately Disturbed (SMD) as a consequence of the surrounding land use for cattle grazing, the biological communities are thought to remain in a healthy condition and ecosystem integrity is likely to be largely retained. No High Ecological Value (HEV) waters have been identified in the subcatchment.

Irrigation

Use of Landers Creek for irrigation.

Stock Watering

Water supply for production of healthy livestock.

Cultural and Spiritual

Custodial use of water resources by Birri traditional owners.

References:

Landuse

Principle land uses within the Landers Creek subcatchment as a proportion of total area:

  • Grazing: 92.5%
  • Irrigated sugar: 4.5%
  • Conservation & minimal use:2.8%
  • Water: Limited water activity use identified.
  • Urban & semi urban: Limited urban & semi urban water activity use identified.

Land Condition

Definition of ABCD land condition framework

No data available for land condition in the Landers Creek sub-catchment.

Ground Cover

No data available for Ground Cover in the Landers Creek sub-catchment.

Resource Condition Summary

Landers Creek is quite a small subcatchment where the major land use is grazing on natural pastures. Almost 5% of the land area is used for irrigated sugar production and a further 3% is remnant native vegetation with minimal use. Riparian habitat in the subcatchment has declined over the last 30 years due to clearing of vegetation along headwater streams. The catchment was in fair (B) condition in the 1970s, but by 2004 its condition had declined to poor (C). Landers Creek is a largely sandy and dry seasonal creek system with limited habitat availability. Irrigation tailwater in the lowermost reach of Landers Creek has increased stream flow there and greatly increased the amount of instream vegetation present. However, very little is known about the ecology and condition of aquatic habitats in the subcatchment.

Hillslope erosion is identified by models as the major source of sediment and particulate nutrients affecting water quality from within the Landers Creek subcatchment, while gully erosion is also predicted to contribute substantially to the total sediment load. The rate of soil erosion is predicted to be moderate, yet well below the Basin average, while the total soil loss from the subcatchment to waterways is comparatively very low. There are no rapid assessment data for land condition and ground cover available for the subcatchment. However, analysis of ground cover from satellite imagery show that the mean ground cover across the subcatchment declined from 98% in 1999 to 79% in 2003, and had recovered to 93% in 2006.

Water quality in the Landers Creek subcatchment is predicted by models to be moderately impacted by suspended sediment during wet season event flows. However, water quality monitoring data from the subcatchment recorded quite low concentrations of sediment; substantially lower than model predictions.

Draft Environmental Values

The aquatic ecosystem values of the Landers Creek subcatchment are poorly known but, while considered to be Slightly to Moderately Disturbed (SMD) as a consequence of the surrounding land use for cattle grazing, the biological communities are thought to remain in a healthy condition and ecosystem integrity is likely to be largely retained. No High Ecological Value (HEV) waters have been identified in the subcatchment. Little is known about the human use Environmental Values of water in the subcatchment, which are thought to be limited to use for stock watering, irrigation and the cultural and spiritual values of the Birri traditional owners.

Maps

References

LandersCreek.jpg
Download Catchment Layer as *.kml (requires Google Earth)

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