Beefing up Fish Habitat on Farms

A beef producer on the Macleay River demonstrates how best to address river bank erosion and fish habitat loss at his Sherwood property.

Taking Action -

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Beefing up Fish Habitat on Farms

A beef producer on the Macleay River demonstrates how best to address river bank erosion and fish habitat loss at his Sherwood property.

The issue

Beef producer, Barry Lee was loosing valuable river frontage to bank slumping and erosion as prior clearing and cattle grazing had suppressed native vegetation regeneration. The 200m river bank site fronts a long and deep pool on the Macleay River known for good reasons by local fishers as the  'Golden Hole'. This reach of river also falls into a NPWS mapped significant wildlife corridor for the catchment. The challenge was to firstly address the short term issues of erosion and sedimentation and secondly address long terms issues including gaps in the riparian wildlife corridor and the on-going supply of timber snags for fish habitat.

The solution

Barry approached Macleay Landcare for support and together developed a Management Plan for the site. Barry's Plan aligned with the recommendations made by a recent NSW Fisheries report for this reach of river as it was reinstating timber for fish habitat, revegetating stream banks and excluding stock. Macleay Landcare successfully applied to the NSW Recreational Fishing Trust for a Habitat Action Grant. The Kempsey Bypass Alliance supplied the snags for free, the Soil Conservation Service provided a construction plan and on site guidance.  The site was fenced by Barry and revegetated with 2,500 standard and long stem tubestock.

The impact

This project illustrates the capacity of Macleay Landcare to effectively support landholders, take advantage of opportunities, form partnerships and address local issues. The project achieved its objectives of providing in-stream fish habitat, addressing erosion and reinstating a diverse and connected riparian zone of vegetation.

Learnings

This is a showcase site demonstrating best practice riparian zone management. Since this project MLN has approached neighbouring landholders to participate in similar activities.

Images

 

Key facts

  • Timber snags were placed to deflect flood flows and provide fish habitat
  • Native Long stem tubestock seedlings survive flood and drought conditions

Project Partners