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Protecting catchments

Discover how we're protecting our catchments, and how you can play your part.

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Pacific Beaches Catchment

Flat Rock Creek

Flat Rock Creek catchment is located on the coastline within the southern section of the city of the Gold Coast. It is the smallest of the 10 major catchments within the city, covering approximately 135 hectares.

The catchment is considered to be the geographical area beginning on the eastern ridgelines of Currumbin and Tugun Heights, extending in a north-east direction to Currumbin Beach.

Land use in the area is primarily urban residential and the catchment has been highly modified. The creek consists of channelised urban stormwater drains in the upper section and a series of three constructed water bodies at Littleford Family Park, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary and Alex Griffiths Park.

The urban setting and high volumes of urban stormwater discharge to the creek results in considerable challenges for catchment management efforts, particularly regarding aquatic weed (Salvinia) control and water quality.

Coolangatta Creek

Coolangatta Creek catchment is the southern-most catchment wholly contained within the boundary of the city of the Gold Coast, bordering Currumbin Creek catchment to the north and Cobaki Broadwater/Tweed River estuary catchment to the south in New South Wales.

The creek is approximately eight kilometres in length, flowing from its headwaters at Tugun Hill and Hidden Valley, along the floodplain, and discharging at Kirra Beach.

The catchment is relatively small (approximately 400 hectares in size) but encompasses interstate areas, including Federal airport land and receiving waters within the Cobaki Broadwater, New South Wales.

The catchment is now highly urbanised and includes the suburbs of Tugun Heights, Tugun, Bilinga, the majority of Coolangatta and Kirra. Current land use is mostly urban residential with many public park areas, most of which are sports and recreation parks.

Remnant native vegetation is highly fragmented due to urban development and infrastructure, in particular, the Gold Coast Airport and major arterial roads such as the Tugun Bypass.

The few areas where contiguous remnant vegetation occurs are at the northern end of the catchment (around Tugun Hill), west of the Tugun Bypass (Hidden Valley) and immediately south of Gold Coast Airport. Despite the level of disturbance to the natural environment, ecological survey results have indicated several significant flora and fauna species occur in the area, along with vegetation communities of high conservation value.

These relict vegetation areas have value for the flora and fauna of the region and as such require protection and enhancement wherever possible.

Aquatic habitat throughout the lower, mid, and upper-catchment is generally characterised by low diversity and is in a degraded condition. Hidden Valley is characterised by a more natural channel morphology compared to most of the creek. The highest aquatic flora diversity occurs in the section of creek adjacent to Southern Cross University.

Further information

View a map of the Pacific Beaches catchment area on the Southern Gold Coast Catchment Story, a map journal developed by the Queensland Wetlands Program in the Department of Environment and Science, in partnership with local councils, Healthy Land and Water and Gold Coast Waterways.

To find out more about how you can become involved in caring for your catchment, visit the Gold Coast Catchment Association Inc. website.

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