Splitters Creek is the major creek in Junortoun, running from west to east on the south side of McIvor Highway. The creek is approximately 6km in length, commencing adjacent to Pratts Park Road in the Greater Bendigo National Park and joining with Axe Creek at Longlea.
Junortoun has been given the opportunity to find out more about Splitters Creek. Junortoun Community Action Group has been awarded a Landcare Grant from the North Central Catchment Management Authority to develop:
- A map of the land tenure along the creek
- Ecological assessment to promote the creek’s value
- Provision of species lists for revegetation and species requirements, such as nest boxes
- Interaction with and education of the adjoining landholders, including on-site information sessions
About Splitters Creek
Splitters Creek is home to a variety of different habitats, including extensive woodlands dominated by River Red Gum and Grey Box. Remnant areas contain native grasses, shrubs, lilies, and daisies. The creek is rich in aquatic life, providing habitat for birds, frogs, insects, and other fauna. It also serves as a corridor for animals moving between Axe Creek to the east and the box ironbark forests of the Bendigo National Park to the west.
Splitters Creek flows through private land with smaller blocks (2 – 5Ha), however there are some sections in the East that flow through larger parcels of agricultural land and some small crown land or reserve frontages.
Generally, there is significant variation in the management of the Creek with some parts degraded due to clearing from rural residential / lifestyle living.
The management practices of the landowners and the biodiversity of the creek are yet to be determined. The status of the Creek in relation to the birdlife, animals and freshwater eco-systems supported by the creek have not been documented previously.
The project aims to show that Splitters Creek should be valued as a creek line with valuable vegetation and a significant ecosystem.
In times of heavy rain or extended rain periods, Splitters Creek floods, inundating roads from St Vincents Road to Bennett’s Road.
Narrow active floodplains occur along the creek that flow through undulating Ordovician terrain. Soils are variable higher in the catchment, but bleached and mottled yellow duplex soils are dominant lower in the catchment.
The yellow colour indicates that the soil has poor drainage and remains saturated for several weeks after rainfall limiting oxygen. An occasional sandy wash may be found overlying the yellow duplex soil where flooding has occurred. Minor salting and severe gully erosion occur.
Junortoun temperature and rainfall
The mean average maximum and minimum temperatures over 12 months are 21.2 degrees and 8.1 degrees, respectively.
The mean rainfall is 510mm and the mean number of days of rain is 70 days.
Endangered species – Bibron’s Toadlet
Bibron’s Toadlet is found in Honeyeater Bushland Reserve wetland, which overflows into Splitters Creek. An outcome of the survey will be to determine if Bibron’s Toadlet exists in the creek and to what extent.