Local projects selected for Rural Landholder Initiative
ELEVEN local projects have been chosen by Lismore City Council for the Rural Landholder Initiative, with each project receiving $5000 for works including stock fencing, weed control and tree planting.
As well as restoring habitat and improving the environment on their properties, the landholders will become 'champions' to spread the word about good land management practices.
In 2016, free demonstration days will be held at each property where other landholders from around the region will be invited to see the works first-hand and learn techniques to use on their own farms, Council's Rural Landholder Initiative Extension Officer Kate Steel said.
"We have a great group of people who are passionate about their properties and very much aware that good land management not only has good environmental outcomes, but can boost productivity on working farms," Ms Steel said.
"We have an excellent mix of local people from the area involved, from beef and dairy farmers to sugar cane croppers, macadamia orchardists and rural lifestyle holders.
"Some of the champions will be improving and stabilising riverbanks to limit erosion and improve water quality, and some will be removing weeds and replanting native species for habitat restoration.
"These people may be receiving money from Council, but they are giving much more themselves in labour and in-kind contributions.
"We are really excited to see these projects begin and to show other landholders how healthy ecosystems can create more productive landscapes."
Developed in partnership with Southern Cross University, the Rural Landholder Initiative is a cornerstone of Council's Biodiversity Management Strategy, designed to conserve biodiversity hotspots on private land through education and incentives.
The project has been funded by a $100,000 grant from the NSW Environmental Trust, with Council chipping in $50,000 for the 11 landholder projects.
Local landholders chosen to participate in the Rural Landholder Initiative are:
- Tony and Lindy Margan, Monaltrie beef cattle farmers
- Bruno Bertolo and Stephen Genrich, Whian Whian macadamia orchardists
- Josh and Teresa Wilson, Bexhill dairy farmers
- Keith Graham, Boatharbour cattle farmer
- Ken Williams and Adrian George, Georgica rural lifestyle landholders
- Luke and Damian Gooley, Coraki sugar cane croppers
- Phillip Terry and Rod Bruen, South Gundurimba soy bean and cattle farmers
- Ernie and Janice Taylor, Tregeagle macadamia orchardists
- Charles and Jenny Handley, Lindendale macadamia orchardists and cattle farmers
- Vanessa and Stan Pelly, Robin Garner and Jeni Allenby: Blue Knob rural lifestyle landholders
- Sandra Heuston, Terry Gliddon, Bernadene Sward, Mary and Gary O'Brien: Rosebank rural lifestyle landholders
The Rural Landholder Initiative projects will begin in February and are expected to be complete by September.