CAN carp at Lake Burrumbeet be controlled? That is the question scientists from the Arthur Rylah Institute are trying to discover as they embark on an ambitious study over the health of the precious waterway.
The ARI team is working with traditional Wadawurrung owners as Lake Burrumbeet Reserve undergoes a gradual upgrade transformation across the next 10 years.
The program has been created by the Lake Burrumbeet Future Project, where a community vision was developed to enable people to enjoy the lake and its surrounding areas, while being mindful that the rights and legacy of traditional owners were being protected.
One of the major issues facing the overall health of the lake is the amount of carp believed to be living in it.
ARI scientist Dr Matthew Jones said the investigation, which will run until March will try and understand the way the carp live in the lake.
"This investigation provides a great opportunity to document how carp use the lake and to see if they can be controlled," Dr Jones said.
"The project consists of two components, the first is an ecology assessment which is looking at the fish fauna that is present in the lake.
"We've been out this week setting some nets to see what is out there and then we'll come back again in March to complete the surveys and write up a report on what we found regarding native fish and the population of carp.
"The second part of the project is to develop management options that are best for the quality of the lake."
Department of Environment, Land, Water and planning Regional manager of forest and fire planning Jon Rofe said Victoria's Great Outdoors Program was aimed at improving recreation and visitor sites to give residents the opportunity to enjoy what the state has to offer.
"For this particular site here at Lake Burrumbeet we have about $1.5 million allocated over a four year period and of that, we've looked to spend about $500,000 this financial year," he said.
"And that is for the level of services we have here. We'll be constructing new toilet blocks, improving the road, improving fencing of native vegetation but we're also taking a cultural heritage plan to identify the critical areas that need protecting."
Mr Rofe said one of the biggest issues facing the lake in the immediate summer months was the prevalence of unattended campfires.
"We really ask people that if you're going to have, when you leave, please make sure the fire is out," Mr Rofe said.
"Be sensitive to the values of where you are camping and have respect for other views of those around you and respect for our great outdoors." For more go to engage.vic.gov.au/lake-burrumbeet-futures