RIVER REVIVER: Environment strategies officer for Lismore Vanessa Tallon among the newly-planted native trees along Wilsons River.
RIVER REVIVER: Environment strategies officer for Lismore Vanessa Tallon among the newly-planted native trees along Wilsons River. Samantha Elley

Trees to help fishers

WITH four daughters who love fishing, Michael Grippo of Lismore has toyed with the idea of starting a kids' fishing club.

"My 11-year-old daughter recently had a fishing party for her birthday," Mr Grippo said.

"Her friends fish so I thought about starting a kids' club; I'd just need sponsorship."

With a couple of lines in the Wilsons River in Lismore on a gloriously sunny winter day, Mr Grippo was taking advantage of the work Lismore City Council has done to stop bank erosion and hence encourage fish popu- lations.

With the help of a $13,000 grant from the NSW Government's Habitat Action Grant program, 125 metres of the Wilsons River banks near the Riverside Park boat ramp have been rehabilitated.

"The bank was eroding due to a lack of vegetation and root systems," environment strategies officer Vanessa Tallon said.

"There were only some annual weeds and grasses."

The council undertook some excavation work by reshaping the bank, placing old bridge timbers near the wharf and using large boulders to plug up the areas where soil had been scoured out from the ramp.

"The main thing for all three areas was tree and grass planting to help stabilise the bank," Ms Tallon said.

A total of 420 trees and 400 grasses have been planted along the riverbank, including natives such as lilly pilly, casuarina and silky oaks.

More than $500,000 in grants are available for individuals or groups that are committed to rehabilitating fish habitat, thanks to NSW Department of Primary Industries.

For information about the Habitat Action Grant program visit dpi.nsw.gov.au/hag or phone 02 6881 1277.



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