Freshwater environmental values
Freshwater and freshwater dependent values in Southern Tasmania include major rivers and river systems, and diverse wetlands and groundwater dependent ecosystems of national and international conservation significance.
Major freshwater and freshwater dependent assets in the southern region include:
- 4 Ramsar listed wetlands - Moulting Lagoon and Apsley Marshes, Interlaken Lakeside Reserve and Pittwater/Orielton Lagoon
- 27 wetlands listed on the Directory of Important Wetlands Australia. These occur predominantly in the Central Highland Lakes/Upper Derwent area, the Derwent Estuary - Bruny catchment, Swan-Apsley and upper Macquarie Catchments.
- Many cave and karst systems, buttongrass and sphagnum moorlands, sub-surface streams, deflation basins, coastal sand aquifers and groundwater dependent lakes, lagoons and rivers.
- Many threatened, rare or endemic freshwater fauna. Examples include: a wide diversity of endemic fish species (Galaxiids) the majority of which are threatened, 14 species of burrowing freshwater crayfish (including 7 threatened) which are important in maintaining the health and carbon storage capacity of buttongrass moorlands, and endemic and threatened frog species (including the green and gold frog, Tasmanian tree frog, the moss froglet and Tasmanian froglet).
The region’s rivers and wetlands are also breeding grounds and nurseries for many species including frogs, fish, birds and invertebrates, making them critical for maintaining biodiversity values. They are also significant places for Aboriginal cultural heritage.