THE Yea Wetlands was one of the many areas throughout the shire impacted by the floods.
Damage to the wetlands includes a lot of trees down, big logs that cars would park against have been lifted and moved, one area of boardwalk ripped out of the ground and flipped over, and some of the paths made of cement and stablised screening have been tipped over. Some picinic tables and signs have been flattened as well.
Fortunately, all the boardwalks that were put in by volunteers withstood the floods very well.
Chair of Yea Wetland committee Geoff Leslie said they were fortunate to have not replaced the old signs before the floods.
“We have a whole batch of new signs. We were actually waiting for the water to go down to put in before the flood came. Now we’re glad we didn’t actually get to put them in so that’s a positive side,” he said.
Currently nobody is allowed to go into the wetlands but Mr Leslie said that once access is again allowed, they will hopefully have working bees to repair the wetlands.
“It’s just a waiting game now to see when the water goes down,” he said.
“I wouldn’t think there’d be a large expense, but the shire doesn’t have it on the list of their top priorities. They’ll pay for those repairs using flood relief money but they have bridges and roads to fix that are far more important than that I suppose.
“The other problem is that we’ve got money from a Regional Tourism Investment Fund Grant from the Victorian Government to put in a new trial with new boardwalks and we had a timeline for that and that’s been set back considerably. We’re also trying to redesign it thinking how we can make it more flood proof.”
Mr Leslie said there’s been some wildlife lost including wombats, snakes, lizards and all the insects whose habitat is the wetlands.
“There is destruction of wildlife but I guess it’s a part of the cycle of life and they will recover.”