Cel­e­brat­ing Bil­l­abong-Yanco re­gion

Southern Riverina news - - RURAL OUTLOOK -

A range of ac­tiv­i­ties aimed at cel­e­brat­ing the iconic Bil­l­abongYanco re­gion will be­gin this month.

Eleven com­mu­nity groups and two coun­cils will share in $107,000 of Aus­tralian Govern­ment Na­tional Land­care Pro­gramme fund­ing and al­most $29,000 from Catch­ment Ac­tion NSW, sup­ported by Mur­ray Lo­cal Land Ser­vices.

The fund­ing will be used for works that cel­e­brate the re­gion’s cul­tural her­itage, and al­low vis­i­tors to ex­pe­ri­ence its nat­u­ral ar­eas and ap­pre­ci­ate lo­cal pro­duce.

The Bil­l­abong-Yanco re­gion fol­lows the Bil­l­abong Creek and its ma­jor trib­u­taries from Walla Walla to Moulamein.

It takes in im­por­tant agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion ar­eas, wet­lands and sig­nif­i­cant fish pop­u­la­tions.

Mur­ray Lo­cal Land Ser­vices’ En­vi­ron­ment Unit team leader Tr­ish Bowen said the grants would al­low lo­cal peo­ple to take ac­tion to ad­dress lo­cal pri­or­i­ties.

‘‘As well as achiev­ing ben­e­fits to nat­u­ral and cul­tural as­sets, these grants are build­ing con­nec­tions be­tween lo­cal peo­ple and the beau- ti­ful, pro­duc­tive land­scapes which they live,” she said. The funded ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude:

The es­tab­lish­ment of in­ter­pre­tive signs and other com­mu­ni­ca­tion re­sources de­scrib­ing lo­cal nat­u­ral and cul­tural icons;

Up­grad­ing trails and ac­cess points to en­able lo­cals and vis­i­tors to ex­pe­ri­ence key nat­u­ral as­sets;

En­hanc­ing na­tive veg­e­ta­tion in key ar­eas; and

A range of field days and study tours to share knowl­edge about in nat­u­ral re­source man­age­ment and cul­tural her­itage.

One of the grants will see land­hold­ers tour­ing lo­cal creeks to learn to iden­tify na­tive and in­tro­duced veg­e­ta­tion, to as­sist with na­tive veg­e­ta­tion man­age­ment and weed con­trol.

An­other will cap­ture photo es­says on ‘Peo­ple and Places of the Creek’, which high­light the nat­u­ral as­sets of the area and com­mu­nity con­nec­tions to these.

‘‘The grants are sup­port­ing some new ideas that have only been con­sid­ered be­cause lo­cal peo­ple have been in­volved in the Bil­l­abong-Yanco Project right from the start,’’ Mur­ray Lo­cal Land Ser­vices board mem­ber Ken Crossley said.

‘‘These ideas are com­ple­ment­ing other works in the area funded by Mur­ray Lo­cal Land Ser­vices, such as up­grad­ing a weir to im­prove wet­land wa­ter man­age­ment, shar­ing in­for­ma­tion on kan­ga­roo man­age­ment op­tions and a study on bio­di­ver­sity in na­tive pas­tures.’’

The ac­tiv­i­ties are due to be­gin this month, with an es­ti­mated com­ple­tion date of Novem­ber 2017.

Stacey Jones, Craig Gallpen and Kyosuke Ku­dayama from Gallpen Dairy at Blighty have a ‘Milk for our Mates’.

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