Wetland named in recognition of Wiradjuri people

Published: 05 Jun 2018 9:07am

Wetland named in recognition of Wiradjuri people - 27 July 2015

The Narrung Street Wetland project has been named in recognition of the local Wiradjuri people and their relationship with the Murrumbidgee River.

The wetland will now be known as the “Marrambidya” Wetland – the Wiradjuri word for Murrumbidgee.

The name was officially endorsed at Wagga Wagga City Council’s July Ordinary Meeting.

Council staff consulted with project stakeholders and the Indigenous community for their input into the name, which is appropriate for the location and meaningful for the Wiradjuri people.

“Naming this project the Marrambidya Wetland is a permanent Welcome to Country for all visitors to the area and recognises the traditional owners of this land, the Wiradjuri people,” Mayor of the City of Wagga Wagga Councillor Rod Kendall said.

“This project will enhance the natural environment along the Murrumbidgee River as well as provide a community resource for education and engagement in local Wiradjuri culture.”

Wagga Wagga City Council, with funding partners Riverina Local Land Services and the NSW Environmental Trust, is redeveloping the disused ponds of the Narrung Street Sewerage Treatment Plant into wetland area recreating the area as a new community asset.

Progress at the site has been gaining momentum since bulky earthworks got under way in April.

The three pond areas and a deep water channel have been constructed, which will allow aquatic animals refuge from warmer surface temperatures during the hot summer months.

The large red gum logs that existed on site have been retained on site to help construct habitat for aquatic and terrestrial animals.

The earthworks are expected to be completed soon, which will be followed by the planting of wetland vegetation, formation of walking tracks and installation of bird hides and an education shelter.

About 18,000 seedlings will be planted, including knob sedge, tall sedge rush, swamp lily, common nardoo, frogsmouth, marsh club-rush, tail spike-rush and river clubrush.

Council was successful in its application as a Green Army Project Sponsor through the Federal Government’s Green Army initiative, which is a hands-on, practical

environmental action program that supports local environment and heritage conservation projects.

The Marrambidya Wetland is likely to be launched in spring following the completion of the ground works.

Stakeholders consulted in naming process:

 Local Aboriginal Lands Council

 Marramarra Community Consultation Group

 Wiradjuri Elders

 Riverina Local Land Services

 Riverina Environmental Education Centre

 Wagga Wagga Urban Landcare Group

 Charles Sturt University

 Primary Industries Centre

Benefits of Marrambidya Wetland development:

 Biodiversity enhancement of a wildlife habitat, focusing on providing habitat for birds, both local and migratory

 A link to the Indigenous heritage of the area

 A potential fish stocking and breeding resource for endangered species

 An educational resource, focusing on aquatic ecology

 An environmental management show piece and tourist attraction

 A beneficial reuse of the water reclaimed from the treatment processes

 A reduction in nutrient loads to the Murrumbidgee River. Although the effluent is currently of a high quality and meets all standards, the development of the wetland will provide additional polishing.

About the Green Army

The Green Army program provides opportunities for young Australians aged 17 to 24 years to gain training and experience in environmental and heritage conservation fields.

It allows participants to explore careers in conservation management, while taking part in projects that generate real benefits for the environment. The Green Army team for the Marrambidya Wetland development consists of six participants and one team supervisor.