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Funding for 30 Fish Habitat Projects Announced

27 January 2014

AUSTRALIA - New South Wales Minister for Primary Industries, Katrina Hodgkinson, and Member for Londonderry, Bart Bassett, have announced the allocation of A$570,000 in grants to recreational angling clubs, community groups, landholders and local councils for 30 fish habitat projects.

Ms Hodgkinson and Mr Bassett made the announcement on the banks of the Hawkesbury River in Richmond, where the University of Western Sydney will use a grant of A$21,863 to develop the Fish @ the Hawkesbury Riverfarm project.

Ms Hodgkinson said the 30 habitat rehabilitation projects cover many popular coastal and inland fishing spots in NSW, with nearly A$1.1 million committed as in-kind support from the successful applicants.

“This is great news for 30 areas across NSW which will see major improvements to local creeks, riverbanks, wetlands and better access for fish, which will improve fish habitats and ultimately produce more fish,” Ms Hodgkinson said.

“The program was highly competitive with 71 applications submitted and there was strong support by local recreational anglers for the applications.

“Successful projects which have received funding are located near cities and towns including Bathurst, Berry, Bilambil, Blayney, Bodalla, Bredbo, Cambewarra, Coffs Harbour, Dora Creek, Dubbo, East Ryde, Fernleigh, Forbes, Guyra, Harrington, Inverell, Lansdowne, Lismore, Lindfield, Monkerai, Nambucca Heads, Port Macquarie, South West Rocks, Ramsgate, Richmond, Taree, Taylors Arm and Upper Horton.

“These grants are funded through the Recreational Fishing Trusts and are a terrific example of how monies raised through sale of the NSW Recreational Fishing Fee are being spent on improving recreational fishing in NSW and supporting the improvement of fish populations.”

In total, the 30 projects will:

• improve 672 hectares of wetland habitat,
• control 155 hectares of invasive riverbank weeds,
• implement 1.34 kilometres of bank erosion control,
• revegetate 14.15 kilometres of riparian zone,
• provide 51 kilometres of enhanced access for fish,
• erect 17.10 kilometres of stock management fencing; and
• install 40 snags/instream woody habitat.

Mr Bassett said the Fish @ the Hawkesbury Riverfarm project will take place at Riverfarm, which is a historic holding of prime agricultural land gazetted in 1799.

“This innovative project aims to create more fish by restoring important riparian zones, which protect the river from land-based activities and provide food, shade and shelter for native fish and other aquatic life in the system,” Mr Bassett said.

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