Oral Presentation International Conference on River Connectivity (Fish Passage 2018)

Improving practical fishway design through a multi-disciplinary approach (#168)

Julian Martin 1 , Julian Skipworth 1 , Matthew Jones 2 , Andrew Briggs 3
  1. Water Technology, Wangaratta, VIC, Australia
  2. Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research, Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia
  3. North East Catchment Management Authority, Wodonga, Victoria, Australia

The selection of an effective fishway arrangement is dictated by any number of influences at any one site. This includes (but is not limited to) the existing fish passage barrier characteristics and function, vehicle and plant (construction) access, cultural heritage, environmental assets, geomorphology (e.g. stability), fish passage requirements (e.g. target fish species hydraulic requirements), surrounding land uses, construction costs and stakeholder objectives. On this basis, a number of key technical specialists are generally required to contribute to the selection of a preferred fishway design arrangement and detailed design.

This paper presents several case studies of fishway design projects in North-East Victoria undertaken in partnership with North East Catchment Management Authority (NECMA) and Arthur Rylah Institute (ARI). Four fishways have been designed over the past 18 months and are now in varying stages of design and construction. Three of the case studies involved the design of rock ramps/chutes while one involved the design of a vertical slot fishway. Each location posed specific design challenges which were able to be overcome through the use of innovative fishway design, detailed modelling and stakeholder engagement. Key outcomes of these projects are that fish passage will be markedly improved across a large range of flow conditions in the Ovens River and Snowy Creeks through the use of innovative multi-disciplinary approach.  The collaborative approach has also ensured that the existing values and functions of the fishway site and surrounds are maintained.