Travelling Australia - Journal 2015c
|5 June 2015
Menindee - Interconnection Channel
Weather in the morning was cloudy-bright with a cold wind. Since Kinchega National Park was so dry and so much of it closed I abandoned any thought of another visit there. Instead I visited the Menindee Lakes lookout on a low hill beside the Menindee-Broken Hill road and beside the Interconnection Channel. The lookout is fairly low but provides a good viewpoint out over Lake Menindee, the weir at the end of the Interconnection Channel and the rail bridge across the Channel.
The Interconnection Channel connects Lake Menindee (via Copi Hollow) with Lake Pamamaroo which is one of the long-term pondages for water storage in the Menindee Lakes complex. When the system is full, water flows from Lake Pamamaroo through the Interconnection Channel into Lake Menindee and can then flow into the Darling River. Weirs and gates control water flow from Interconnection Channel into Lake Menindee; these gates are firmly closed now so the channel contains water while Lakes Menindee is dry except for a trickle of water near the weir.
The surrounding region was so dry that many water birds had gathered on the Interconnection Channel (one of the few water holes still available) and there was a collection of bird species which prefer diving for food (including Musk Duck, Darter, Hardhead, Hoary-headed Grebe, Australasian Grebe, Black Cormorant and Great Cormorant) were all present, some in large numbers. As well, Pelicans which eat fish but scoop them up from the surface with their large bills had also gathered and the presence of Pelicans is a sure sign that fish are present; if there are no fish then Pelicans fly to where there are fish to eat.
I spent several hours, in two sessions, wandering slowly along the banks of the channel. The sun shone fitfully and the very cold wind continued; finding somewhere out of the wind and in the sun was pleasant, but rare.
5 June 2015 - Menindee, Interconnection Channel, page 2
5 June 2015 - Menindee, Interconnection Channel, page 3