In a win for local finned earthlings, work has started on the installation of a new bridge to replace the Durrumbul causeway adjacent to Settlement Rd at Main Arm.
The installation of the new bridge is one of two causeway upgrades that are jointly funded by the NSW DPI Flagship Fish Habitats Grants Program ($274,600) and Byron Shire Council ($274,600) as part of the Bringing Back the Brunswick project.
Bringing Back the Brunswick aims to reinstate fish passage in the Brunswick River by removing fish barriers to open upstream habitat.
James Flockton, Byron Shire Council’s Drainage/Flood Engineer, says the replacement of the Durrumbul causeway is the first stage of the project, which will not only see two causeways upgraded, but three other fish barriers removed.
‘These structures stop fish from moving upstream,’ said Mr Flockton. ‘They can currently only migrate to the upper reaches of the Brunswick River around 10 days a year when the river is flooding.
‘Bringing Back the Brunswick will open up seven kilometres of upstream habitat and allow 27.4km of fish passage right down to the estuary mouth which will benefit all native fish species, particularly the Australian Bass,’ he said.
Byron Shire Council’s Works Coordinator, Hank Spangler, said the new bridge replacing the old, concrete causeway will be the same height as the current crossing, but will go over the Brunswick River instead of through it as is the case at the moment.
‘This means that fish will be able to move freely under the bridge and it’s also good news for residents because the bridge will not be as susceptible to flooding,’ said Mr Spangler.
The installation of the new bridge and removal of the causeway is expected to take approximately two months.
The other causeway earmarked for replacement is on Johnsons Lane at Durrumbul with work to get underway later this year.