Dawesville bypassing complete, endangered birds protected

News for the Department of Transport


A flexible work program, expert advice and careful monitoring contributed to the successful completion of annual sand bypassing at Dawesville following the detection of a colony of an endangered Australian bird species nesting at Pyramids Beach.

Department of Transport (DoT) Executive Director Maritime Steve Jenkins said a colony of Australian Fairy Terns, a species protected under State and Commonwealth legislation, was found nesting on Pyramids Beach in January prior to works commencing.

“In response, DoT took advice from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions and the Western Australian Fairy Tern Conservation Network on how to manage the bypassing campaign without disturbing the nesting colony,” Mr Jenkins said.

“The colony was one of the largest observed in the State in more than 10 years and contained the oldest known Fairy Tern in the world.

“Drones were used to monitor the nests and works were timed to achieve the best possible outcome for the birds with no impact on the colony during the 11 week bypassing campaign that saw around 100,000 cubic metres of sand from Pyramids Beach pumped north of the entrance to the Dawesville Cut via pipes on the seabed.”

The $900,000 bypassing project has ensured the entrance channel remains navigable and beaches located north of Dawesville receive the volume of sand they require to limit erosion in winter.

Mr Jenkins said with the successful completion at Dawesville, the focus of DoT’s coastal maintenance work would now move to the Mandurah Ocean Entrance for a similar sand bypassing and replenishment campaign to ensure safe navigation and a wider Town Beach for summer.

“Funded by the State Government and City of Mandurah at a cost of $1.2 million, the work will see about 150,000 cubic metres of sand relocated prior to completion in November,” Mr Jenkins said.

Beach users are asked to observe the warnings in place and keep well clear of the works which will occur during daylight hours from Monday to Friday.

For more information about DoT’s dredging and sand bypassing program visit our website.

Media contact: media@transport.wa.gov.au

Page last updated: Fri Oct 1 2021 11:38:59 AM