Dramatic difference made to riverbank

A PART of the Manning riverbank that was experiencing severe erosion has been restored as a result of a collaborative approach between MidCoast Water, Hunter Local Land Services and local landholders.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted - and members of the community have a chance to see the works next Thursday, May 22 when the site will be open for community inspection.

Located at Bootawa, the site is usually inaccessible so the inspection is a great opportunity to see an example of the work MidCoast Water is undertaking in the catchment to improve the health of the Manning River.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted. Pictured during the stabilisation works.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted. Pictured during the stabilisation works.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted. Pictured before the work began.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted. Pictured before the work began.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted.

The site of the old town water intake at Bootawa has now been stablilised, the bank reshaped and the area replanted.

Other works undertaken this financial year include the stabilisation of 10 creek crossings on Ben Halls Creek in the Upper Barnard catchment where dirt roads were contributing sediment which eventually flowed to the Manning River.

The work at the old offtake was undertaken by local contractors and the project also engaged Taree Indigenous Development and Employment Ltd (TIDE) to undertake weeding and planting once stabilisation had been completed.

The open day, which will start at 10am, will involve an explanation of the philosophy behind the design and sharing lessons learnt about off-stream watering and exclusion of cattle from the river, the planting and weeding.

"This is a chance for our community to have a look at one of our many environmental projects," general manager Robert Loadsman said.

"Generally they are fairly inaccessible and there isn't that chance to take people to have a look - so we are pleased we can open the gates to this project and talk about what we are doing."

"Neighbouring landholders have constructed shade shelters for the cattle which go with the offstream watering system and fencing to keep cattle away from the river and off the new plantings."

Mr Loadsman said that on other properties where MidCoast Water has helped with offstream watering - such as on the Crawford River weir pool where Bulahdelah's water supply is drawn from - they have found that cattle voluntarily spend significantly less time near the river when they have clean water and shade.

The works have been funded by MidCoast Water and Hunter Local Land Services.

For more information on the open day, please contact Kirsty Hughes at MidCoast Water on 6592 4830.

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