Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What googly has been looking at this week past

I have been googlying plenty of things this week. This is normal. Here are a few of things I recall.

Our friend in Japan is taking a holiday down south to Nagano. Heard of it? I had, but I could not recall why. It was where the 1998 Winter Olympics were held.

There was the great emu war post World War I in Western Australia, pointed out to me by Timespanner. It sounds like it was a bit Dad's Army. As implausible to me it sounds, there was also the great cat cull in the Diamantina, south west Queensland. Seems to be true.

Of course a lot googlying took place to write the Shinkansen post. In fact it would be rare that I write a post without googlying something to get a fact wrong.

But what I found extremely interesting was our Yarra River. Unlike Sydney with its boring open water, Melbourne has a river flowing right next to the CBD. As I travel over Princes Bridge in a tram, if it has been raining, I look down to check the level of the river, and then pull myself up with the reminder that it is tidal as the river passes Melbourne, I think.

Googly gave me the answer, tidal up to Dights Falls in Abbotsford. Do you know we have a Yarra Riverkeeper?

From memory, there used to a small waterfall at the bottom of Elizabeth Street before the river was widened for the turning basin, so the river was only tidal up to Elizabeth Street.

Of course our Yarra River sadly does not sparkle blue but more often than not looks brown. We are told that it is a natural state, caused by sedimentary run off. Really?

The Yarra banks and its catchments were all forest. All run off would have been filtered through forest mulch, grasses and water plants. It would normally be pure crystal clear water flowing down the Yarra. The sedimentary run off must be from land we have farmed or developed. Of course we have to farm and develop, but it could now be done without such detriment to the river.

The last time the Yarra flooded near the City was 2005. This photo from Picasa is by Frank. I would guess high water flow coincided with a high tide.


  1. Yarra Riverkeeper...anything like the bloke what ferries the dead across the river Styx?

  2. My, doesn't the city look delightfully Venetian in that photo! I'd not be averse to seeing that again, y'know provided my own house stayed high and dry!

  3. I used to have a heap of pics from when the river flooded the city, not sure where they ended up, it sure was exciting.

  4. Er, no Jayne.

    Mutant, there is a cafe now at the base of the footbridge. It would be underwater. Agree, nothing wrong with a bit of a flood. Perfectly natural.

    Good Victor, as I would struggle to win any argument.

    They would be good to see Fen. Dig 'em out.