Wednesday, 29 September 2021 09:55

Catchment projects need to be farmer-led

Written by  Jessica Marshall
The Rangitikei Catchment Collective is an umbrella for 17 sub-catchment groups, says coordinator Louise Totman. The Rangitikei Catchment Collective is an umbrella for 17 sub-catchment groups, says coordinator Louise Totman.

Catchment projects need to be farmerled, according to Louise Totman, who coordinates the Rangitikei Rivers Catchment Collective.

Totman says the decision to join the collective needs to be a farmer-led initiative on behalf of the sub-catchment group.

The Rangitikei collective is an umbrella for 17 sub-catchment groups, covering 700,000ha across the Rangitikei, Turakina, and Whangaehu river catchments. Recently it received $910,000 in Government funding.

“We don’t do a big push to get these groups up and running,” she told Dairy News.

“Obviously, we’ve had a few that have been going for two to three years. So, we’ve only started off with a small number and it’s probably only through word of mouth that other groups have jumped on board.

“We support and we encourage them but we don’t run their group. So, it needs to have that enthusiasm of a leader or two leaders that are going to get that ball rolling and keep it rolling,” she says.

“You can’t get everybody,” she says. “You can’t make them but hopefully they’ll catch wind of the opportunities that the members are having within that group and they might realise that they’re missing out on something.”

Totman says the collective work on several projects but the biggest one is monthly water testing.

So far, she says the collective has spent approximately $60,000 on the water testing alone.

“We’re undertaking that every month and every month we’re doing about 64 different sites across that area.”

Totman says the funding will go towards creating workshops at field days and getting experts in to talk to catchment group members.

“We’re sort of building up towards the next two and a half years of spending that money that we’ve been allocated.

“So, up until now, it’s all just been sub-catchment projects but probably not on a catchment scale,” she says.

Totman says that all of the farmers within the sub-catchment groups have a goal of ensuring that no cattle find their way into waterways.

“Up here we’re really lucky that we do have the SLUI [Sustainable Land Use Initiative] plans, they are all funded by Horizons if you’re on the right country for it.

“It’s that most at risk erodible hill country, but we’re really lucky that most of the farmers in these sub-catchment groups… have already got these plans.”

More like this

Farmer investment pays off

Investment by landowners to keep stock and sediment out of the Rangitikei River and its tributaries has been given the big tick from a population of Dwarf Galaxiids, which require healthy streams to survive.

One-stop catchment shop!

A new toolkit to help the development of capability and education for catchment leaders and coordinators has been unveiled.

Report shows progress for Thriving Southland

A new report released last month, titled Thriving Southland ‘the difference that makes a difference’ highlights the progress the three-year Thriving Southland Change and Innovation Project has achieved so far.

Catchment group making group progress on improving water

Over the last two and a half years, Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) has worked on a project to improve the freshwater health catchment groups from across the country, with help from the Ministry for Environment's (MfE) Freshwater Improvement Fund. One of these groups is the Thomson's Creek Catchment Group in Central Otago.

A decade of diversity

The Hurunui Waiau Uwha Zone Committee (HWUZC), North Canterbury recently visited a landmark restoration project established ten years ago to learn about biodiversity improvements gained through fencing and weed control.

Featured

Ploughing Champs success

Sean Leslie and Casey Tilson from Middlemarch, with horses Beau and Dough, took out the Rural News Horse Plough award at the Power Farming NZ Ploughing Championships at Horotiu, near Hamilton, on April 13-14.

Farmers oppose work visa changes

Farmers are crying foul over changes announced by the Government this week to the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) scheme.

National

Share farmers with big plans

With only about eight weeks to go before their cows are dried off, the 2024 Manawatu Dairy Industry Awards Share…

Team effort brings results

For the team at Westmorland Estate Limited in Waikato, it has been another year of everyone working together to achieve…

Machinery & Products

New name, new ideas

KGM New Zealand, is part of the London headquartered Inchcape Group, who increased its NZ presence in August 2023 with…

All-terrain fert spreading mode

Effluent specialists the Samson Group have developed a new double unloading system to help optimise uphill and downhill organic fertiliser…

Can-Am showcases range

Based on industry data collected by the Motor Industry Association, Can-Am is the number one side-by-side manufacturer in New Zealand.

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Avian flu in cows

A lethal form of avian influenza has been confirmed in US dairy cattle in Texas and Kansas, the US Department…

China trade

OPINION: Last week's revelation that data relating to New Zealand MPs was stolen amid Chinese state-sponsored cyber espionage targeting two…

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter