Molonglo Waterwatch

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About M-CHiP
Monitoring Results

Waterwatch is a national community water quality monitoring network that encourages all Australians to become involved and active in the protection and management of their waterways and catchments.

The Waterwatch network is made up of individuals, community groups and school groups who undertake a variety of biological & habitat assessments and physical & chemical tests to build up a picture of the health of their waterways and catchments.

By monitoring their local waterways over time, community members can determine if the health of the waterway and surrounds are improving, declining or being maintained.

The Molonglo Catchment Group is a strong supporter of the Waterwatch program, to complement the Molonglo Catchment Group's many positive solutions to improve the quality of our waterways.

Current Programs:

M-CHiP – The Molonglo Catchment Health indicators Program

The establishment of this program in each sub-catchment will lead to better monitoring and evaluation of environmental agencies and the community’s on-ground works.

The Program provides simple and practical methods that community groups can use to:

  • measure the health of their local catchment;

  • provide input into sub-catchment management planning and enable groups to practice adaptive management;

  • identify options for remedial action and where to best use grant monies or in-kind services;

  • monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of their on-ground projects;

  • identify early warning signals of environmental problems; and

  • measure over time the trends in the condition of the natural resources in their catchment.

More information is available on the About M-CHiP page.

If you are interested in the Molonglo CHiP please contact the Molonglo Waterwatch Coordinator

Frogwatch is a community frog monitoring program that collects important information about frog species and therefore catchment health and water quality. Frogs are well known for their sensitivity to pollution and habitat degradation, which makes them ideal indicators of the health of our catchments and waterways. The Frogwatch Census involves a simple assessment of our waterways by assuming that healthy habitats provide suitable conditions for diverse and abundant frog populations.


If you are interested in Frogwatch please contact the Molonglo Waterwatch Coordinator.


Platypus Watch

ACT Waterwatch, in partnership with the Australian Platypus Conservancy provides two public programs on platypus monitoring in the ACT Region:

  • Platypus Watch is designed for rural landholders, Waterwatchers, Landcarers or nature enthusiasts who visit their sites on a monthly or irregular basis.

  • Platypus  Count is for those who may wish to become involved in regularly monitoring platypus at a given site on a daily or weekly basis, and is an excellent and easy way for joggers, cyclists and walkers to become involved in the conservation of their favourite places. Sign-ups are not required for this program.

Platypus are often thought of as shy and elusive. “In actual fact,” says Conservancy biologist Dr Melody Serena, “they can occur fairly close to residential areas and are reasonably easy to spot. We are hoping to find people to watch for platypus in their local waterway, especially the Molonglo and Queanbeyan rivers, and record their sightings. By systematically recording platypus sightings over time it should also become possible to monitor how well populations are coping and to plan conservation actions on their behalf.”


Very little is currently known about how this iconic Australian species is actually faring in rivers, creeks and lakes in and around the ACT. To address this issue, ACT Waterwatch and the Australian Platypus Conservancy have joined forces to monitor this fascinating animal and are looking for more volunteers to help.


In 2010, the then ACT Waterwatch Facilitator, Tanya Noakes, said that platypus are generally easiest to see in places where the water surface is fairly flat and calm, so ripples created when the animals swim and dive stand out. It normally only take a few minutes of scanning to determine whether a platypus is active in the area. “Most volunteers can easily combine looking for platypus with their routine walk, jog or cycle ride, so the time commitment is not great,” said Tanya.


If you would like to learn more about Platypus Watch and Platypus Count in the ACT region, future training dates and materials, contact the ACT Waterwatch Coordinator, Woo O'Reilly on 6207 2246 or woo.oreilly at


The Waterwatch network strives to achieve a shared responsibility and collective action for natural resource management through partnerships between community, government and industry.

If you are interested in joining a Waterwatch group or perhaps starting up your own group then please contact the Molonglo Waterwatch Coordinator.

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Last modified: 19/01/2016