Swans return to Swan Bay after habitat restoration work

Member for Lismore Thomas George awards $393,825 of NSW Government environmental grants to Richmond River County Council, Wilson Creek Huonbrook Landcare, Envite and Big Scrub Rainforest Landcare Group.
Member for Lismore Thomas George awards $393,825 of NSW Government environmental grants to Richmond River County Council, Wilson Creek Huonbrook Landcare, Envite and Big Scrub Rainforest Landcare Group. Marc Stapelberg

SEEING a flotilla of 200 black swans returning to the Swan Bay wetland between Coraki and Woodburn is about as good as it gets for Richmond River County Council's Mike Wood.

"So much of what we do is about politics and paper shuffling, so it's good when you see something like that as a result of work on the ground," he said.

Mr Wood said the Swan Bay area was a paddock with a single swan struggling through the weeds a year ago, but the prime habitat has been restored thanks to some intensive restoration work.

Some politics and paper shuffling has paid off with Richmond River County Council (RRCC) being named as one of four recipients in the Lismore electorate of an Environmental Trust Restoration and Rehabilitation grant.

RRCC will use their $94,765 to rehabilitate 3.5 kilometres of the Richmond River at sites in Lismore, Ballina and Richmond Valley Council areas over three years, as part of their Coastal Zone Management Plan.

Other recipients include; $99,260 for the Big Scrub Rainforest Landcare group to improve wildlife corridors; $99,800 for Wilsons Creek Huonbrook Landcare group to remove coral trees and $100,000 for EnviTE to restore habitat links in Yarringully Nature Reserve and Bungawalbin Creek catchment.

Thomas George said his electorate had received 10% of the $4 million on offer across the state, which was a credit to the professionalism of the organisation that had submitted project applications.

"People have a view that I don't do much for the environment but have a look at what the electorate got. That's partly the quality of the applications and I'd like to compliment each and every one of them," he said.

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