Biodiversity & Cultural Heritage Field Day

Local farmers come together to discover the benefits of increasing and protecting biodiversity on farm

Biodiversity & Cultural Heritage Field Day

Local farmers come together to discover the benefits of increasing and protecting biodiversity on farm

Collaborations -

LP020-007

The issue

Increasing biodiversity on farm is now an important part of managing the agricultural landscape. Educating landholders on the outcomes that can be achieved by increasing biodiversity on farm, the measures that they can take to enhance and increase the areas of vegetation and wetlands on their properties can see environmental enhancement included in management decisions and secure the longevity of a farm business.

Engaging landholders to encourage them to implement practice change and broaden their focus on what to consider when making farm management decisions is challenging and involves timing of activities, the duration of the activities and the delivery of clear information presented in a manner they can relate to.

The solution

In March, in conjunction with the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust, a Biodiversity and Cultural Heritage Day was organised at the property “Old Coree” near Jerilderie. “Old Coree” is managed by Rice Research Australia Pty Ltd.

To start the day attendees sat in the gardens surrounding the homestead to learn about the history of the property and the agricultural research undertaken and the holistic management of the property. A field tour then led the group to the wetland area of the property to learn about the wetlands watering program. The Murray Darling Wetlands Watering Group then talked about how the environmental water was provided to the wetland and the response from the flooding. The species surveys from the monitoring and the health of the vegetation clearly showed increasing biodiversity and improvement in the health of the wetland.

One of the revegetation sites that was visited showed the group the breadth of biodiversity at the site. Staff from BCT shared information on the type of private land conservation agreements that were available to landholders and the process involved. Murray LLS staff were on hand with locally harvested seeds and a direct seeding machine. Information sheets also showed the services that they offer landholders to get their projects up and growing. The day finished with a tour of the cultural heritage sites along the Billabong Creek highlighting the importance of these sites to the community.

The impact

The day was a wonderful success with all attendees thoroughly enjoying the day. Many of the participants have done some revegetation or fencing on their farms. Feedback indicated that they would be looking to implement projects on their farms to increase the areas of vegetation and to protect existing vegetation. Some participants indicated they would be investigating further the stewardship agreements with BCT.

Key facts

  • The content of the day relates to the “Community” pillar of the Rice Industry Sustainability Framework.
  • Attendees with no knowledge of ephemeral wetland watering before the event will consider if wetland watering could be used on their own farms.
  • Collaboration with different groups leads to high education outcomes for attendees.

Project Partners