Makeover of Browns Creek, Taree

Community driven, Landcare facilitated bush regeneration.

Makeover of Browns Creek, Taree

Community driven, Landcare facilitated bush regeneration.

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The issue

Browns Creek is a partly tidal waterway that meanders through the township of Taree,on the Mid North Coast of NSW. It has a catchment area of 730ha and is highly visible to the community. It supports a wide range of environmental habitats from estuarine seagrass beds to Koala habitat. Seventeen fauna & two flora species listed in the Threatened Species Act have been recorded and numerous studies have been done.

Over many years the creek has been used and abused and vegetation along the creek has degraded, becoming infested with all manner of exotics, vine weeds, small leafed privet & green cestrum.

In 2012 local resident Bill Dennis approached Manning Landcare about Browns Creek which led to a new partnership being formed and action quickly followed. Bill spearheaded a campaign to raise awareness and support from local business, adjoining residents, Council & Midcoast Water.

The solution

"The Friends of Browns Creek" was formed and work began on searching for plans and environmental studies that had been completed to gain a complete picture of the issues regarding vegetation management & aquatic health.  There were numerous studies that had been undertaken however recommended works had never been completed or maintained.

Manning Landcare provided support and liaison, wrote funding grants and sort technical expertise to produce a plan of works for the creek. All adjoining landholders were approached to gain their perspective, issues and possible involvement/support. Greater Taree Council provided support, machinery and man hours to clear pollutant traps, assist with research and funds to further project works.

The impact

Manning Landcare successfully applied for funding through the NSW Environmental Trust. These funds allowed for weeding by trained bush regenerators and for information sessions to raise the profile of the creek and explain to the community what was hoping to be achieved. The funds were further leveraged by working with Centrelink recipients needing to complete hours on community projects.  These volunteers were trained in bush regeneration techniques, WHS and supplied basic equipment. Several of these people still attend regularly.

The Friends of Browns Creek also received a grant funding to build a walkway along the creek. A canoe ramp/launching site was established and has been built with the assistance of the local council.  This project is a wonderful example of how a dedicated group of volunteers can achieve a wide range of positive outcomes for their community and the environment.

Key facts

  • Community driven
  • Bush regeneration
  • Partnerships with funding bodies and local council

Project Partners