Regular assessments of Wallaga Lake indicate it is in pretty good shape.
However much more data is being collected to improve our understanding of the lake's health, in particular, the impact of the bushfires.
Earlier this month a Wallaga Lake community group called Heights Care organised for Bega Valley Shire Council to speak to residents from Akolele, Beauty Point, Fairhaven and Wallaga Lake Heights, about the lake's health.
Bill Southwood, a member of Heights Care, said "it was a terrific turnout of people who are very interested in the lake's health." He estimated 20 to 30 people attended.
Rachel Duczynski, council's coastal management officer, impressed residents with her knowledge of the lake, although it was acknowledged more data was needed.
Assessments of the sea grass and abundance and diversity of fish, for example, have not been conducted recently.
BVSC has engaged water quality experts Elgin Associates, to undertake a detailed assessment of the lake. The work is now in its second year.
Nick Yee, director and principal environmental scientist at Elgin Associates, said they had installed loggers at a number of sites around the lake to capture data, such as water height, rainfall, temperature and salinity.
Council was particularly keen to understand the impact of the 2019/20 bushfires on the lake's health as measured by the levels of carbon and nutrients.
Biosecurity teams are doing inspections, examining things like weed control, revegetation and bank stabilisation of the shire's waterways.
Mr Yee said the fact that estuaries like Wallaga Lake remained open indicated the bushfire impact was less than expected.
Fishermen throwing lines into the deepest areas of Wallaga Lake are unlikely to catch much he said.
Oxygen levels there are very low, making it a stressful environment for fish. They will have more success in shallower waters near the bridge where Mr Yee said the lake's natural mixing processes - tidal flushing, flood flows after heavy rainfall and wind on the lake's surface - were very effective.
Council is due to publish its draft Catchment Management Plan towards the end of the year.
"We are looking forward to seeing and commenting on the plan," Mr Southwood said.
At next year's Heights Care information session on Wallaga Lake, Mr Southwood hoped some Indigenous residents will share their knowledge of how they managed the lake in the past, and explain its cultural significance.
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