Over 40 local recreational anglers braved wet and windy conditions last Saturday to help revegetate the Barwon River. Thousands of native trees, shrubs and grasses were planted on the banks of the lower Barwon River near Marshall, south of Geelong, to return a one kilometre stretch of the river to its original woodland habitat.
Planting native vegetation along waterways enhances fish habitat by providing shade, reducing extremes in water temperature, filtering nutrients and sediments from catchment run-off and reducing erosion.
Geelong and District Angling Club’s Steve Coleman said he was proud to be involved in the event to restore habitat along the Barwon River, which has been a favourite fishing spot for many years.
“Planting native trees is a great way to improve fish habitat in the river as it protects the bank from erosion and the woody debris provides shelter for fish, to protect them from predators,” he said.
Corangamite Catchment Management Authority’s Tony Byrne said that providing a healthy habitat is the key to healthy fisheries. “Through partnerships with angling groups and other government agencies, the Corangamite CMA is working to restore riparian land, improve instream habitat, enable fish passage, and engage with communities to spread the message that caring for our catchments benefits everyone,” he said.
The Corangamite Catchment Management Authority partnered with VR Fish, the Geelong and District Angling Association, Australian National Sportfishing Association Victoria, and the Geelong Gun and Rod Association to host the angler riparian planting day, with support from the Victorian government’s Angler Riparian Partnerships Program.