Head Start for Nambucca Sustainable Agriculture

Head start for future of sustainable agriculture in Nambucca Valley: Landcare teams with primary industry students

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Head Start for Nambucca Sustainable Agriculture

Head start for future of sustainable agriculture in Nambucca Valley: Landcare teams with primary industry students

The issue

Primary industry students at Bowraville Central School are completing an extensive program in sustainable agriculture towards certification. Integral to their learning and development is visiting local farms and meeting with farmers, however their access and network has to date been limited.

The solution

Nambucca Valley Landcare partnered with the primary industries coordinator to connect students with local farmers, and provide integrated information on the relationship between sustainable agriculture and a healthy catchment.

For the first session, Nambucca Valley Landcare Coordinators used the Coast and Estuary Resource Kit to launch a conversation on agriculture and river health. Following a spirited discussion, the class visited Charlie Ford, a local Oyster grower, to tour his family oyster farm. The students prepared a list of questions for Charlie focused on sustainability and productivity of the industry.

Charlie described process of growing Oysters from spat to plate, the impact of poor land management on water quality, and the challenges and opportunities for Oyster growing in the region.

The impact

The information session and excursion were well-received by students and faculty. The extensive knowledge of Nambucca Valley’s Senior Landcare Coordinator was an excellent resource for students keen to learn practical implications of natural resource management and sustainable agriculture in the valley.

Further field days with the students have now been planned, including to river restoration sites, to demonstrate the benefits of work to date, and the challenges that remain ahead. The aim of this program is to inspire the next generation of local land mangers to consider whole-of-catchment health in their productive ventures.

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Key facts

  • Integrated information provided to primary industry students on natural resource management in the Valley.
  • Oyster grower field day demonstrated the interconnectedness of land management and river health.
  • Students benefited from the extensive experience and wide network of Nambucca Valley Landcare staff.

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