Turtleway prototype to help turtle movement

14 Oct 2011

The Hon. Stephen Robertson MP - Minister for Energy and Water Utilities

Member of Stretton

Minister for Energy and Water Utilities Stephen Robertson today announced the start of a $4 million project to protect turtles and help them move more easily through Queensland’s waterways.

Mr Robertson said SunWater’s Mackenzie River Turtleway Project would fund research to develop a prototype which will help turtles to navigate over man-made barriers in rivers, creeks and weirs.

“The Tartrus Weir has been selected as the location to develop the turtleway prototype, which will be followed by a two year period of monitoring,” Mr Robertson said.

“The Turtleway Project, which has been funded under the State Government’s dividend re-investment program, will provide a valuable insight into ways to assist turtle migration.

“SunWater will lead the research, design and construction of the prototype with the assistance of the Environment and Resource Science Division of the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM).”

Minister for Environment Vicky Darling said the project would lead to long-term environmental outcomes.

“The research and development project will investigate the design, development and installation of passages to allow turtles to migrate safely over a range of structures,” Ms Darling said.

“The project will particularly follow the movements of the threatened white-throated snapping turtle and the Fitzroy River turtle species that can be found in the Mackenzie River system.”

Mr Robertson said the Turtleways Project was a result of the Bligh Government and SunWater’s commitment to the environment.

“This project is a clear example of the importance the Bligh Government places on responsible environmental management, and further demonstrates our commitment to the sustainable management of Queensland’s natural environment and resources.”

SunWater Chief Executive Peter Boettcher said the organisation had a firm commitment to sound and responsible environmental management.

“SunWater has a long standing record of ensuring our infrastructure across regional Queensland does not only benefit communities, but also does not impact adversely on the surrounding environment,” Mr Boettcher said.

“This research will go a long way in helping us to better understand turtle movements across existing infrastructure as well as ensuring that future infrastructure developments can be informed by this research.”


Media Enquiries

Minister Robertson’s office – 0417 293 245

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