Future proofing our rivers
South East Local Land Services, with support from the NSW Government’s Marine Estate Management Strategy, has recently completed revegetation works on more than 17 km of the Tuross River.
Landholders in the Bodalla area had expressed concerns about the state of the waterways on their properties, leading to a collaboration with Local Land Services to reinstate vegetation and improve water quality throughout the Tuross River catchment.
Bodalla dairy farmer Vanessa Todd became concerned for the future of the waterway after the Black Summer Bushfires.
Ms Todd said “I’ve been very worried about the effect the radical weather changes are having on the riverbanks as I’m seeing trees well over 100 years of age falling into the river.”
“We’ve seen droughts and floods stressing these trees. This is devastating to see as there isn’t any new regrowth and my riverbanks are becoming eroded and falling in” Ms Todd said.
After contacting Local Land Services for advice on revegetating the riverbanks, Ms Todd was supported to plant over 4,000 native species on her property. Senior Land Services Officer Sonia Bazzacco worked closely with Vanessa to implement the project in partnership with the Batemans Bay Local Aboriginal Land Council.
“The project was much needed as the riverbanks in the area had a very thick layer of weeds that prevented native species from growing. Native grasses and trees play an important role in holding our riverbanks together, in turn reducing the impacts of erosion” Ms Bazzacco said.
“The Tuross River has been significantly impacted by droughts and fires, seeing a massive increase in sediment into the water ways which impacts oyster farming and aquatic habitat. Improving vegetation in these areas improves water quality by holding banks together and buffering runoff from surrounding areas” Ms Bazzacco said.
Ms Todd feels optimistic about the future of the river, saying “Local Land Services were able to take the pressure off me to address this issue by supporting this project.” This activity has contributed to ‘climate proofing’ the river for future extreme weather events, whilst also improving water quality in the Tuross River.
If you would like to improve your waterways contact South East Local Land Services on firstname.lastname@example.org or 1300 795 299.
The Riverbank vegetation improvements project is funded by the NSW Marine Estate Management Strategy: Initiative 1- Improving water quality and reducing litter. For more information on the Strategy visit www.marine.nsw.gov.au
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