The project seeks to improve the quality of water that moves through the Raglan Creek sub-catchment into the Macquarie River and enhance biodiversity. Council was successful with an application for grant funding from the Local Land Services, who have also provided technical advice on the project.
The Raglan Creek sub-catchment is the largest sub-catchment in the city of Bathurst and incorporates the highly visible landscape of the eastern gateway to the city. The top of Raglan Creek begins just east of Raglan, flowing down to the Macquarie River, entering it 2km south east of Eglinton. It incorporates rural, residential, recreational and commercial land. The creek system is subject to a number of pressures which contribute to poor water quality, including:
- Woody weeds that have established on banks and in the creek bed restrict ground-cover growth and native species diversity.
- Erodable granite creek banks, in some areas, contain no ground cover and are subject to scouring and slumping.
- Stormwater run-off from roads and other non-porous surfaces transports urban pollutants to the creek.
- In upper areas of the sub-catchment grazing stock have access to the creek, which increases erosion.
The project to date has treated 5kms of Raglan Creek at six separate locations. On-ground activities have included weed removal, bank stabilisation and in-stream and stream bank revegetation with native species. Works include:
- A total of 3.1 kilometres of stock-proof fencing has been constructed at 2 sites.
- Woody weeds have been controlled along 2.5 kilometres of streams by an Aboriginal volunteer team and volunteers co-ordinated by Conservation Volunteers Australia. Large trees have been poisoned by stem injection and subsequently removed by an experienced contractor.
- 3000 native plantings have been established along the 5kms.
- Approximately 500m of creek bank, in areas of active bank and bed erosion have been stabilised by the application of erosion control fabric and loose rock. These areas were subsequently planted with suitable native shrub and semi-aquatic species by an Aboriginal volunteer team and volunteers co-ordinated by Conservation Volunteers Australia.
- On site signs have been installed by Council staff to inform the community of water quality/creek biodiversity issues relating to waterway management.
Educational components of the project have included a high level of involvement by indigenous and non-indigenous workers, community volunteers and the development, by professional local teachers, of curriculum–specific teaching modules for school students from Kindergarten to Year 6.