Alpha Series stormwater pond overflowing
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Alpha series stormwater pond overflowing onto Fish and Game Hatchery Springs land and into Bullock Creek

The pond which collects stormwater from 10 hectares of the Alpha Series subdivision is overflowing on the Hatchery Springs land and into Bullock Creek.

This is after moderately heavy rains - we’ve had 82.6mm over four days, but nothing that could be described as a one in 20 or 50 year event.

The pond which is ultimately designed to attenuate stormwater from one third of the area of the Alpha Series subdivision is full to the brim and overflowing at a rapid rate.

So much so that by 9am this morning, Thursday 30th May, it was ponding across a large area of land adjacent to the Wanaka Retirement Village, up to 200mm deep and creating a flow alongside the boardwalk, at much the same rate of flow as Bullock Creek on the other side.

Untreated stormwater from the overflow eventually enters Bullock Creek.

Friends of Bullock Creek is deeply concerned that the stormwater attenuation pond will never be able to handle the amount of stormwater from 10 hectares of residential housing on the Alpha Series subdivision. It cannot contain the runoff from a few days rain, the stormwater drain from the catchment into the pond is underwater - and that’s before all the hard, impermeable surfaces of houses, rooves, driveways etc are built or completed.

The environmental threat to Bullock Creek and Lake Wanaka is major as is the threat of downstream flooding to properties along Bullock Creek.

FOBC has registered its detailed, researched and factually based concerns to Council and we will be meeting the Mayor and Chief Executive, Mike Theelen on June 12th to discuss how QLDC can prevent the destruction of Bullock Creek and risk of flooding to property owners’ land through Wanaka town.

We believe this is a stormwater time-bomb with the capacity to devastate both Bullock Creek and Wanaka.

You can register your support via our Facebook page but more importantly by contacting council and expressing your concerns as a matter of urgency.

Thank you

Andrew Waterworth, President - FOBC

Rare fish find a boost to conservation move.

Republished from Otago Daily Times.

By Richard Davison.

A recent fish survey has given further impetus to a project to assess and conserve Wanaka’s urban waterways. The survey was conducted in Bullock Creek by members of Fish & Game Otago and the Upper Clutha Lakes Trust as part of the Wanaka Urban Streams survey.

A wider water quality study was announced last week and will examine stormwater flowing in Lake Wanaka from the township. Fish survey spokesman Paul van Klink, of Fish & Game Otago, said the exercise had yielded more than 100 fish, which were caught, measured and released along two separate 100m sections of the creek.

Among them were 70 brown trout ranging from 5cm to 48cm, 28 rainbow trout from 5cm to 54cm, and two native koaro (Galaxias brevipinnis) both about 8cm in length. The koaro is a threatened species and is ranked as declining. Although it has not been recorded in Bullock Creek before, it has been found in other inflowing tributaries of Lake Wanaka.

“A high number of juvenile brown and rainbow trout in both the upper and lower sections confirms the importance of Bullock Creek as a nursery stream for the Lake Wanaka catchment,” Mr van Klink said.
”This is one of only a few spring creeks in the Central Otago region. The survey shows its importance, and the need for it to be protected to support and maintain its freshwater values.”

The Upper Clutha Lakes Trust Wanaka Water Project has more than $385,000 in funding, and is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

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FOBC Trust
The Future of Bullock Creek in Good Hands
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Budding environmentalists from nearby Little Wonders Oanaka Childcare at the Fish & Game Bullock Creek Hatchery Springs last week (Photo Roger Gardiner).

A group of 10 4 year pre-schoolers planted natives at the wetland as part of a nature discovery group. Assisting them is Andrew Penniket from Te Kākano Aotearoa Trust and Oanaka Childcare Supervisor, Katrina Heyneman. The Bullock Creek Hatchery Springs restoration began 2 years ago and over 1300 native plants have been planted by Te Kakano with help from their volunteers.

The children are standing on the recently completed 330 metre boardwalk which winds its way through the Fish & Game property. The Bullock Creek Hatchery Springs has been a cornerstone project for the Wanaka Residents Association (WRA) who fund-raised the $100,000 walkway project.

The official opening for the Bullock Creek Hatchery Springs has been postponed by the Otago Fish and Game Council due to issues associated with ongoing storm water run-off entering Bullock Creek from the neighbouring subdivision. The WRA have received widespread community support for steps to be taken to protect this outstanding natural spring creek. The WRA and Fish & Game and have been in dialogue with local authorities and have asked for comprehensive updates on the situation.

WRA President: Roger Gardiner 0211177220

FOBC Trust