QUESTIONS have been raised about how the Peel's platypus will be protected when the state government dams up parts of the river.
In November, Water NSW will install temporary block banks, which are expected to leave parts of the river dry.
In the recent budget estimates, Greens politician Cate Faehrmann asked Water Minister Melinda Pavey if her department was aware the Peel had a healthy population of platypus, and if there was a plan to "prevent the devastation" of local numbers.
MORE WATER PRESSURE STORIES
The minister is yet to respond to the questions, however Tamworth ecologist Phil Spark said platypus were quite common in the Peel from Chaffey Dam to Dungowan village.
"I have no doubt they'd be right through the river down to Somerton, possibly further," Mr Sparks said.
"Where ever there is a gravel bed, that's platypus habitat."
Mr Spark has been monitoring platypus in the Barnard River, which has run dry bar a few watering holes.
"They're amazingly tough," he said.
"The big issue is the Peel doesn't have the holes it historically had.
"Because it's a regulated flow, it's more of a channel now. So those deeper watering holes that persisted in the past when it ran dry may not exist anymore."
Mr Spark said the invasive carp could pose a problem to Peel platypus, should they be forced to share watering holes.
"The presences of carp will effect the water quality, given the degree of sediment they stir up," he said.
"That makes it all the more important that they monitor the local population."