Territory Stories

Darwin Harbour in good health



Darwin Harbour in good health


Westra Van Holthe, Willem

Political affiliation

Country Liberals


Media Releases for 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016; Media Releases; ParliamentNT






Made available by via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT)




Oceans; Marine life

Publisher name

Northern Territory Government

File type



Issued as a Media Release

Copyright owner

Northern Territory Government

Parent handle


Citation address


Related items

https://hdl.handle.net/10070/528211; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/528213

Page content

5 4. Sites and sampling method Darwin Harbour water quality data were collected from water samples and analysed in the laboratory, and by field measurements for the period of July 2013 to September 2014. Broad scale, ambient water quality monitoring was undertaken by the Aquatic Health Unit of the Department of Land Resource Management, whilst more spatially targeted monitoring was undertaken by the PowerWater Corporation as part of its wastewater discharge license. Water quality monitoring in the vicinity of the upper reaches of the Blackmore River was undertaken by the Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries for the aquaculture industry. The sites monitored by these organisations in 2014 were similar to those monitored in 2013. Data collection is biased towards the dry season, due to the often unsafe and difficult sea conditions present during the wet season. At each site, surface water (approximately 0.25 m depth) was measured for pH, dissolved oxygen (%saturation), salinity and temperature using a multi-parameter probe. Turbidity was measured with a turbidity meter. Total Suspended Solids (TSS) was derived from the relationship between Turbidity and TSS established in 2013 (Mauraud, 2013). More detail on this relationship is in Appendix 1. Water samples were collected from the surface in plastic bottles then stored on ice in the field for the laboratory analysis of nutrients (nitrogen oxides (nitrate and nitrite), ammonia, total nitrogen, total phosphorus and filterable reactive phosphorus) and chlorophyll a. The number of sampled sites and number of samples is summarised in Table 4, and site location shown in Figure 2. Table 4 - Sites and sample number for each reporting zone. Methods Indicators Elizabeth Upper Myrmidon Creek Blackmore Upper West Arm East Arm Middle Harbour Outer Harbour Shoal Bay Buffalo Creek Number of sites 17 9 36 14 13 9 20 10 5 Number of samples 32 98 70 90 90 18 153 20 67