The Australian Government’s Healthy Rivers program is delivering big wins throughout the Murray-Darling Basin with the Mehi River near Moree one of the main beneficiaries, thanks to the work of dedicated OzFish members.
OzFish Unlimited, Australia’s recreational fishing charity, has undertaken extensive restoration work at the picturesque waterway in northern NSW as part of the $20 million Federal Government program which has funded 159 projects to improve waterways in the Basin.
The extensive project which rejuvenated a 10km stretch of the Mehi River revolved around three travelling stock reserves in need of urgent attention.
After community consultation, OzFish was able to apply for funding and make a huge difference to the Mehi, in and out of the water.
OzFish’s Moree River Repair Bus Team Leader Jay Barnett and OzFish’s Gomeroi/Kamilaroi Cultural Officer headed up the project which involved removing more than four square kilometres of woody weeds and 1,500 litres of litter, including several bulky items.
Working alongside Traditional Owners to determine the restoration sites and with the assistance of Moree Urban Landcare and the Northern Slopes Landcare groups, more than 80 volunteers rolled up their sleeves as OzFish hosted community events to help plant 4,000 native seedlings.
It was one of 10 projects that OzFish has been involved in over the past few years from the funding provided by the Healthy Rivers Program to help restore the Murray-Darling Basin.
“It was a very ambitious project, but we thought we’d go big and create a statement for Moree,” said Mr Barnett.
“We’ve been able to show the Moree township what OzFish can achieve and now we’ve got more and more people wanting to work with us, which is awesome. It’s been one of our most successful projects.”
The restoration project is expected to yield significant benefits for native fish productivity, thanks to the rejuvenated riparian zone that will offer added nourishment by way of insect fall.
The additional 10 tonnes of rocky in-stream habitat will keep native fish safe and happy in the water.
This project was made possible by the OzFish-Landcare NSW partnership with funding support from the NSW Recreational Fishing Trusts, the Australian Government through the CRC Program, the Australian Government’s Murray–Darling Healthy Rivers Program and BCF – Boating, Camping, Fishing.
Dropbox of images and vision of the project (please credit OzFish Unlimited in all usage): https://www.dropbox.com/sh/n1sxmb0o6mfigrg/AABmw8HbzB7ZOKmDyum4bp4ma?dl=0
If you would like to know more about the project or get involved become a member of OzFish at www.ozfish.org.au or phone 1800 431 308.
OzFish Unlimited is a national environmental conservation charity established to improve the health of our rivers, lakes and estuaries. It is a member-based organisation dedicated to make our fishing grounds healthy, vibrant and more productive. Their active work includes; habitat restoration such as resnagging, riverbank planting, clean-ups, fishways, shellfish reefs and educational and community capacity building programs.
If you would like further information about the project or to interview Jay Barnett, please contact OzFish Unlimited Communications Manager Paul Suttor
0421 491 229 | email@example.com