High flows from River Murray into Coorong causes new problems for wetlands after years of low flows

Migratory birds from around the world flock to South Australia's internationally important Coorong region made famous by the movie Storm Boy.  But scientists say the

River Murray flood has been "disastrous" for the region's bird species, prompting urgent calls for better management and intervention of the river system. Nesting sites of

the region's rarest and most vulnerable bird species have been flooded, while an algal bloom is also limiting the food source for migratory shorebirds that flock to the region

near the Murray Mouth to feed over summer. University of Adelaide ecologist David Paton said the impact of the flood could have been prevented. "We're probably sitting

at a third of the numbers we counted last year and that's probably more like one 10th of what it should be," Dr Paton told ABC News. "That's a direct result of the high

water. "Very few of the birds using this Coorong are not declining and this just adds another little nail in their coffin. "There's not enough flow coming down in all

the intervening years before these big floods that then protect it a little bit from over-flooding which is happening this year."Higher flows lead to algal bloom Flooding

from River Murray has inundated more than 3,000 homes and properties in South Australia. It is also raising water levels in the Coorong's RAMSAR-protected wetlands and

lagoons, increasing nutrients in the water and decreasing salinity. "We've now got an algal bloom taking place here," Dr Paton said. "This is pretty disastrous if

you're a migratory shorebird because you have no mudflats in which to forage.