Karuah River and the Port Stephens estuary is being showcased during Landcare Week

Karuah River and the Port Stephens estuary showcased.

 

A JOINT project that addresses multiple impacts on the Karuah River and the Port Stephens estuary is being showcased during Landcare Week from 3-9 August, with more farmers invited to join the project.

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Through an innovative partnership between local farmers, Midcoast Council, Hunter Local Land Services, Landcare Australia and Karuah Great Lakes Landcare, the Karuah-Borland Landcare Program is beginning the journey to improve the health of the Karuah River. A video has been produced which showcases the Karuah Catchment Grants program, the first part of this three-year project.

“The health of a river is generally the culmination of the surrounding impacts that occur throughout its catchment. Things like unsealed roads, or impacts from clearing or agriculture, allow nutrients and sediment to slowly make their way across the land when it rains or through little creeks and drains down into the main trunk of the river – and in the case of the Branch and Karuah Rivers, into Port Stephens,” said MidCoast Council’s Catchment Management Coordinator, Louise Duff.

“Healthy wetlands and native vegetation are essential for healthy rivers. Wetlands and vegetation corridors along riverbanks operate like the river’s kidneys, filtering out these nutrients and sediment from the land, while also providing habitat for native species and serving as connecting corridors for these species to move through.

Protecting these remaining wetlands and riparian corridors is a key part of restoring the health of the overall river.”

Combining forces, the partnering agencies are contributing over $500,000 to this project which is being matched by eight landholders through their own labour and cash contributions, to protect these vital habitats on their properties.

Altogether, over 270 hectares of wetlands and 50 hectares of riparian vegetation will be secured on The Branch and Karuah Rivers.

Bryan Royce is putting the final touches on a fencing project that will protect some 50-odd hectares of wetlands on his property ‘La Grande Lande’.

Bryan explains that the cattle get into the wetlands and pug the soil, generally making a mess particularly when it’s wet. The new internal fence allows him to manage the cattle and keep them out of the wetlands for most of the year.

Along with the installation of new water points for the cattle, he’s able to get the most out of the good pasture.

“This is a great example of multiple public agencies, non-profit organisations and the community coming together to solve big complex problems,” says Geoff Le Messurier, Senior Land Services Officer with Hunter Local Land Services who worked with the farmers to get these projects across the line.

“The only way to address these issues and develop landscape-scale projects is by working together and sharing resources. For instance, on this project Hunter Local Land Services is committing funding from the NSW State Government’s Marine Estate Management Strategy to reduce impacts from land on our marine estate. The projects associated with these eight neighbouring properties were bigger than our available budget so rather than reducing the scope of our project, we’ve partnered with Midcoast Council and through them Landcare Australia to really make a difference”.

Rowan Ewing is Head of Landcare Services for Landcare Australia, and says that “this is the second major project Landcare Australia has supported in the region to improve wildlife habitat, water quality and agricultural productivity”.

He adds that this is a first step, and there will be more projects getting underway in the Karuah catchment to build on this successful collaboration.

2 thoughts on “Karuah River and the Port Stephens estuary is being showcased during Landcare Week

  1. Increasing unobtrusive temperature checks especially for restaurants should help to control the virus.

  2. In reference to the article attached, there are many other impacts to the Karuah River that the Council and others don’t want to discuss. Yet that does not mean they do not exist. This is left to various Community Groups, ICAG Inc. and individuals, to tell this part of the story (of other impacts to the river systems, down stream to Karuah River, Port Stephens). I will add photos and film at a later date to show people the disgusting and disgraceful acts of people signing away our natural environment. I hold records of photos and film since 2006 and I am tired of companies being given the green light to destroy the environment “without a care-in-the-world”.

    This weekend we started to campaign (visually to the Community) of what WoodburyCivil is intending (if approved) to do to our local area of Limeburners Creek & Allworth properties. They have been running around the Community for months telling property owners, they will be putting a quarry 500+ metres from their boundary fence, or move and widen the road of Deep Creek Road, through their shed or past their front door. This has sent fear into the Community, resulting in properties going up for sale (I believe a scare-tactic used by all the same types of companies).

    Sadly a property owner has done a “dirty deal” and vise versa giving this company the ability to start clearing bushland and old growth forested areas and build roads through this property. Which conveniently cannot be seen from The Bucketts Way NSW Tourist Drive 2 (at present). I have photos of this destruction when I was asked to attend the neighbouring property who has been put into a nightmare.

    The company intends to run the haul road past the neighbours fence line and their house, (that did not do the deal). The Representative of Woodbury Civil, believes (that planting trees will stop the dust, noise, diesel fumes etc). What about also the health problems & visual disturbances and more, associated with a haul road for a mining company/quarry “proposed” at this stage and/or for those that are approved. Midcoast Council has been contacted by various people in the Community of how this company is operating, what we believe ahead of time bulldozing the bushland and bulldozing the Community!

    The company ‘Representative’ advised this week that the road being built, is actually the haul road to the “proposed quarry”. We believe that perhaps it may have been put into Council as a house and driveway? We are asking Council these questions to clarify T.B.A.

    The same company ‘Representative’ also took it upon himself to advise the property owners “its going to happen regardless of what individuals or Community Groups do”.

    This quarry if approved, this will also impact Deep Creek its only a matter of time I believe. This creek has oyster leases and joins the Karuah River. The Oyster of Karuah River/Port Stephen industry brought in Twelve Million Dollars p.a. 2019.

    The company Representative (Tim) also said that the Community would be notified the following week. So this is from Monday 10th August 2020 onwards, in whatever format is unknown. Will keep you posted on their ugly progression. Amanda Albury, Forest Glen Road Limeburners Creek NSW 2324 and ICAG Inc. Secretary, (M) 0403 645 521.

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