Donated Water Revives Unique Murray-Darling Wetland

The 400 million liters of water purchased by the Australian Conservation Foundation with donations from people from all over the country has started to flow into the Hattah Lakes wetlands in northern Victoria.

The foundation's Just Add Water initiative, launched on March 15, aimed to raise enough money to purchase 200 million liters of water for Hattah. But the response from the public was so big that within two weeks, the foundation doubled its target.

"It’s a thrill to see the water flowing back into this wetland which has not had a major flood since 1996," said Paul Sinclair, Ph.D., the foundation's Healthy Ecosystems program manager. "Environmental watering like this is necessary because too much water has been taken out of the Murray-Darling over too many decades, mostly for irrigated agriculture. In fact, 90 percent of wetlands in the Murray-Darling Basin have already been lost."

The water is being delivered to Hattah Lakes through the Victorian government’s environmental watering program in partnership with Parks Victoria and the Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

Remote cameras have been installed to film the lakes filling over the next three months. Live footage can be viewed at

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