Bill Gunn Dam

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Bill Gunn Dam
Bill Gunn Dam is located in Queensland
Bill Gunn Dam
Location of the Bill Gunn Dam
in Queensland
Country Australia
Location South East Queensland
Coordinates 27°37′40″S 152°22′37″E / 27.62778°S 152.37694°E / -27.62778; 152.37694Coordinates: 27°37′40″S 152°22′37″E / 27.62778°S 152.37694°E / -27.62778; 152.37694
Purpose Irrigation
Status Operational
Opening date 1987
Operator(s) SEQ Water
Dam and spillways
Type of dam Embankment dam
Impounds Off-stream
Height 18 m (59 ft)
Length 1,160 m (3,810 ft)
Dam volume 722×10^3 m3 (25.5×10^6 cu ft)
Spillway type Uncontrolled
Spillway capacity 5 m3/s (180 cu ft/s)
Creates Lake Dyer
Total capacity 6,940 ML (1,530×10^6 imp gal; 1,830×10^6 US gal)[1]
Catchment area 3 km2 (1.2 sq mi)
Surface area 100 ha (250 acres)
Max. length 1,100 m (3,600 ft)
Max. width 600 m (2,000 ft)
Max. water depth 10.7 m (35 ft)
Normal elevation 110 m (360 ft) AHD

The Bill Gunn Dam is an earth-fill embankment dam with an un-gated spillway located off-stream in the South East region of Queensland, Australia. The main purpose of the dam is for irrigation of the Lockyer Valley.[2][3] The resultant reservoir is called Lake Dyer.

Location and features[edit]

Located 1.5 kilometres (0.93 mi) west of the town of Laidley, the dam was developed to increase the capacity of the existing Lake Dyer, a natural lake adjacent to Laidley Creek, a tributary of Lockyer Creek. The dam was named after the Australian politician Bill Gunn and is managed by SEQ Water.[2]

The 1,170 m (3,840 ft) long earthfill structure has a maximum height of 12 m (39 ft) and an overflow spillway which diverts excess water into Laidley Creek. The dam has a storage capacity of 6,950 megalitres (1,530×10^6 imp gal; 1,840×10^6 US gal) and a maximum surface area of 108 hectares (270 acres).

Water from the dam is used for irrigation, in the densely cropped Lockyer Valley.[2] Bill Gunn Dam suffers from high drawdowns and summer evaporation which together with phosphate fertilizer creates significant blue green algae problems.[2] In November 2005, during drought conditions in the area, the dam's water level declined to just 1%.[4]


A boating permit is not required, however a maximum of eight boats are allowed at on the lake at once.[2] A single concrete boat ramp and some facilities for visitors, including campers, are available at a lakeside caravan park which is managed by the local council.

The dam is stocked with silver perch and golden perch, while bony bream, spangled perch and eel-tailed catfish breed naturally.[2] A Stocked Impoundment Permit is required to fish in the dam.[5] The poor water quality means that fish caught in the dam may, at times of an algae outbreak, be a health hazard if eaten.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bill Gunn Dam". Water supply: Dams and weirs. Seqwater. 2014. Retrieved 26 June 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Harrison, Rod; James, Ernie; Sully, Chris; Classon, Bill; Eckermann, Joy (2008). Queensland Dams. Bayswater, Victoria: Australian Fishing Network. p. 94. ISBN 978-1-86513-134-4. 
  3. ^ "Register of Large Dams in Australia" (Excel (requires download)). Dams information. Australian National Committee on Large Dams. 2010. Retrieved 23 June 2014. 
  4. ^ Rebecca Dull (2005-11-29). "Falls make small impact on dam levels". Ipswich Queensland Times. APN News & Media. Retrieved 2008-04-28. 
  5. ^ Fishing in Queensland dams? You may need a permit.

External links[edit]