Summer is fast disappearing and winter approaching so I thought I had better say a few nice things about East Beach before winter storms undo what has happened during summer.
The beach height readings at most of the posts are at their highest recordings since we started in 2013.
Post 4 is now about 55 cm below the surface of the sand. Much of the improvement between the post and the dune face is due to wind blown sand. The old night soil site (between Post 5 and 6) is well protected at present with vegetation becoming established on the dune face. The rock wall at the old tip site (between post 7 and 9) is performing well except at the northern end where there has been some washout. While this is a characteristic problem of walls, without the wattle and wire fence at the ends of the wall, erosion of the dune face would have been significantly greater.
Port Fairy hosted the Victorian Surf Life Saving completion in early March. The weather was great and there was about 100 metres of beach at low tide for the 2000 competitors. That certainly was not the case a few years ago. Port Fairy in general was really buzzing over summer.
Late last year we started to take measurements at the entry point onto the beach at the northern car park (golf coarse end) to see if the horse training traffic onto the beach is going to cause any dune erosion.
Unfortunately, primary school monitoring of South Beach and Pea Soup is on hold at present due to manpower problems at our end.
There has been a lot of interest lately from various university bodies (Griffith, Federation and Deakin) in the “citizen science” that is occurring along southern and eastern coastal regions. As further testament to the value of our beach monitoring, we have been approached by all three bodies so it will be interesting to see what eventuates. I gather the hope is that it will all be documented and collated and some structure to coastal science monitoring be formulated.
Like a lot of other interested groups and individuals we have been asked to contributed to the formulation of The Belfast Coastal Reserve management plan. The Reserve extends from Warrnambool to the Port Fairy light house. Killarney Beach is managed by Moyne Shire Council. The rest is managed by Parks Victoria. The Minister for the Environment asked for a new plan to be formulated because of the race horse training on the beach, controversy.
We welcome Ian Tebbutt to the committee. Our group is very lucky to have Ian’s professional skills helping with data analysis and the management of our web site, so keep an eye out for new presentations on www.pfcg.org.au
As always, we can do with some more helpers and members so if you feel you can contribute, get in touch with one of us and discover that measuring the sand can be just a walk on the beach.