Case study: Keeping cattle out of riparian zones

Canal Creek graziers have taken steps to protect and improve their creek systems.

Constructing a fence around the riparian zones on our property allowed us to improve pasture and ground cover in our paddocks with creeks. Cattle can now be strategically rotated while reducing creek bank erosion. – Justin Tait

Background

Justin and Bronwyn Tait run 130 Droughtmaster breeders and replacement heifers on their property Palmtree.

The 1650 hectare property is dominated by coastal eucalypt forest woodlands, loamy alluvial and river-gum flats.

Since purchasing the property, the Taits have been working to improve the condition of their grazing land.

As part of their goal for long-term sustainability, the Taits signed up to the GRASS program. The program offered a financial incentive to complete work that was already on their 'to do' list.

Project purpose

Improving land condition, maintaining ground cover and reducing erosion helps to improve the quality of water in local waterways.

The Taits' cattle liked the river-gum flats along their creek system, where they had been selectively grazed, especially in the wet season.

Working with Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) extension officers, the Taits completed an action plan for land management. This included fencing for riparian areas and distributing watering points away from the creek system.

When

  • 2021

Location

  • Canal Creek, near Rockhampton

Who

Project outcomes

  • Water tanks, troughs and fencing were installed to keep cattle out of the riparian zone.
  • Ground cover can rehabilitate along streambanks and gullies, reducing the risk of erosion.
  • Cattle graze more sustainably across other land areas.
  • Sediment erosion is minimised.

GRASS program

The GRASS program supports graziers across the Burdekin, Fitzroy and Burnett Mary regions. It focuses on improving land in poor condition and helps graziers create a land management action plan. To find out more about the GRASS program, phone DAF on 13 25 23.