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Coomera River Catchment

The Coomera River catchment lies within the northern part of the Gold Coast and extends into the eastern region of Scenic Rim Council.

The Coomera River traverses through highly diverse land uses ranging from the relatively undisturbed headwaters in Lamington National Park on the New South Wales/Queensland border, through large rural properties in the upper reaches to high density residential and riverside development, particularly in the lower estuary where it flows into the Broadwater near Coomera Island/Paradise Point.

The upper catchment flows through lands used primarily for cattle grazing and through the Land Warfare Centre at Canungra. The lower freshwater section traverses through rural acreage housing, nursery and quarry practices, and modified residential development.

The estuarine section of the river has been impacted most by modification to the lower floodplain for canal estates, marinas and golf courses.


  • The river is approximately 90 kilometres in length and flows approximately 35 kilometres through the Scenic Rim Council and 85 kilometres through the City of Gold Coast.
  • The lower estuary of the Coomera River divides into a northern and southern arm around Coomera Island, which forms part of the southern Moreton Bay Marine Park.
  • Its major tributaries are Saltwater Creek and Coombabah Creek which both originate in the Nerang State Forest.
  • Tributaries in the lower catchment include Wongawallan Creek, Baker Creek, Guanaba Creek, Oakey Creek and Yaun Creek.
  • Other tributaries include Clagiraba Creek, Flying Fox Creek, Laheys Creek, Back Creek and Armitage Creek.

Water quality

The water quality in the Coomera River system is highly variable, and is dependent on seasons, rainfall and associated run-off volume. The freshwater section has poor quality in several areas, showing high nutrient concentrations and occasional algal blooms and aquatic weeds. Within the upper estuary, total nitrogen (TN), suspended sediment and chlorophyll are elevated (WBM, 2003).

The Healthy Waterways Report Card for the estuary part of the Coomera River declined slightly from B to C+, while the freshwater section went from B+ to B. This was mainly due to an increase in total nitrogen and total phosphorus at times outside the water quality guidelines. An increase in phytoplankton was observed in the estuary waters. Overall dissolved oxygen concentrations remained at healthy levels.

Find Report Cards on waterways in South East Queensland on the Healthy land and water website.

Coomera River Catchment Study Guide

The Coomera River Catchment Study Guide is designed for use by school students and teachers, particularly those located within the Coomera River catchments. This guide details specific catchment processes, water quality and waterway cultural information and provides learning activities designed to be utilised in both outdoor and classroom activities.

Further information

To find out more about how you can become involved in caring for your catchment, why not consider volunteering in your catchment? Visit the Watergum website to find out how to get involved.

Find information on the ecosystem health of Gold Coast waterways on the Healthy land and water website.

Related information

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