Unique fish habitat projects will be carried out in Lismore with a grant from DPI.
Unique fish habitat projects will be carried out in Lismore with a grant from DPI. Cas Garvey

How the DPI plans to improve recreational fish populations

THE NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has awarded $594,000 in grants to recreational angling clubs, community groups, landholders and local councils for 26 unique fish habitat projects, under the popular Habitat Action Grants Program.

NSW DPI Fisheries, Program Leader - Murray Darling, Cameron Lay said the grants will see major improvements to local creeks, riverbanks, wetlands and provide better access for fish, which will improve fish habitats and ultimately produce more fish.

"The range of successful projects cover many iconic coastal and inland fishing spots in NSW with over $840,000 committed as in-kind support from the successful applicants,” Mr Lay said.

"It's fantastic that well over a million dollars will go into enhancing and rehabilitating fish habitats because ultimately, it's not only the fish who will benefit - valuable agricultural grazing land will be protected and water quality in our rivers will be improved.

"This program, which grants up to $40,000 per successful application, provides a great opportunity to improve local creeks, rivers, estuaries or surrounding areas to promote healthy waterways and to make more fish, naturally.

"This will have flow-on benefits to local communities and tourism through improved recreational fishing opportunities.”

The program this year was highly competitive with 55 new applications submitted, with strong support from local recreational anglers for all the applications.

Successful projects will be carried out right across NSW in areas including: Forbes, Bredbo, Narrambla, Tamworth, Cooma, Borambola, Tenterfield, Jamberoo, Narooma, Merimbula, Tathra, Berkeley, Coutts Crossing, Bowraville, Lismore, Dorroughby, Channon, Dumaresq Island, Bellbrook, Kempsey, Bankstown and Muswellbrook.

The projects include:

  • Installation of 35 woody habitats (snags)
  • Installation of over 12 kilometres of riparian fencing to manage stock access,
  • Revegetatation of over 10 kilometres of riparian zone, planting at least 18,000 trees, shrubs and sedges,
  • Controlling 35 hectares of introduced riparian weeds,
  • Bank erosion control measures, and
  • Wetland habitat management measures.

"Funding for these grants was provided through the Recreational Fishing Trusts, where all money raised by the NSW Recreational Fishing Fee are placed into the Recreational Fishing Trusts and spent on improving recreational fishing in NSW,” Mr Lay said.

"The Recreational Fishing Trust - Habitat Action Grant Program is a great example of how anglers' money is being invested back into recreational fishing, supporting the improvement of recreational fish populations.”

A full list of successful projects can be found at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/hag.



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