Belongil Creek is 2.5km north-west of the Byron Bay town centre. It stretches for approximately 3km. Its upper reaches connect to the extensive Belongil-Cumbebin Swamp system via a network of drains.
The catchment has many high-value ecological features including:
- threatened species habitat, flora and fauna.
- endangered ecological communities
- wetland and wildlife corridors.
Part of the urban area of Byron Bay and the commercial area of the Byron Bay Arts and Industry Estate, is drained into the creek.
The creek and wetland system is an intermittently closed and open lagoon (ICOLL). Agricultural lands surround the estuary, as well as residential and commercial development in the low lying areas of the catchment prone to flooding when the creek is closed.
Belongil Creek mouth management
A long-term Belongil Creek Entrance Opening Strategy was adopted by Council on 27 February 2020.
The Entrance Opening Strategy and Environmental Management Plan is a long-term, sustainable plan for Council to open Belongil Creek in a way that minimises the impacts on natural processes and ecosystems, while also protecting the community and assets from flooding.
The strategy provides an adaptable and flexible framework to inform and guide entrance opening events.
In accordance with the strategy, the watch level is when water reaches 1.0m AHD (above sea level) in the main channel of the Belongil Creek. This is measured at Ewingsdale Bridge. From this point on, factors such as weather, predicted rainfall, ocean levels and the height of the sand berm are considered and guide our decision making about whether the estuary entrance is opened.
For more information see our Belongil Creek Floodplain pages.