Knowing that what we do on our land eventually affects water quality in our area
and downstream, we chose to take a holistic view of our catchment and deal with our habitat as a whole, be it farming practises or lifestyle choices.”
Ossie said it was fortunate that some residents in the lower catchment had come together 15 years ago and as a group had investigated and in many cases implemented, more sustainable farming practises.
This group ran out of puff after four years but two of the group’s successes were a widespread possum control programme that is still going today, and the other was recognising the detrimental effect of pugging by wintering mature cattle on wet soils.
Neil Managh, coordinator of the original group gave his support to Ossie who
then called on the leading farmers in the area, the local school principal, known
environmentalists, friends and acquaintances and got their commitment to the scheme.
“We organised a community wide pamphlet drop calling a public meeting and away we went,” Ossie said.
Is this something DU members should get involved with? Ossie said: “Given that
whatever we do to our landscape sooner or later affects our wetlands and waterways, I think it is worth DU members thinking about what happens upstream from their favourite dam, wetland or waterway.
“The primary benefits are thinking of being more sustainable in what we do for the benefit of the habitat as a whole. This includes the best way to keep our soils in situ, the nutrients on the property and a flourishing diversity of which we are part.”