Funding available to restore waterway frontage burnt in St Patrick’s Day fires

Betty Russell in front of Yellow-bellied glider habitat on her Scotts Creek property, which has been rehabilitated after the 2018 St Patrick’s Day fires with funding from the Victorian government.

A new round of funding is available for landholders to replant and protect waterway vegetation burnt in the 2018 St Patrick’s Day fires. The Corangamite Catchment Management Authority (CMA) has partnered with Heytesbury District Landcare Network (HDLN) to assist landholders with fencing, weed control and revegetation of riparian areas.

One of the landholders assisted in the first round of funding is Betty Russell of Scotts Creek, who replanted a 6-hectare area of Yellow-belled glider habitat on her property that was burnt in the St Patrick’s Day fires. The site was first planted by Betty and her late husband Bert in the 1980s with help from the local Landcare group.

“When Bert and I started this was a bare paddock,” Betty said. “He just kept planting more and more trees – he never did anything by halves.”

The rehabilitated site has been planted with native grasses, tussocks and trees. “After all the past work that’s been put in, I’m so happy to see it looking healthy again,” Betty said. “The funding is a great help, as things have been a bit tough.”

“Landholders affected by the St Patrick’s Day fires can apply for funding to assist with on-grounds works in fire-affected riparian areas, including new fencing, repairing damaged fencing, weed control, and planting of native trees and groundcover” said Gene CMA.

Landholders with fire-affected riparian areas can contact Gene Gardiner at the Corangamite CMA on 0419 105 179, or Paul Hartrick at the Heytesbury District Landcare Network on 0432 012 808. The Barwon South West Fires Project is supported by the Victorian Government.