Funding Source: Australian Government – Smart Farms, Small Grants, Round 1 Program
Timeline: October 2018 – October 2020
Funding received: $95 000 (GST exc.)
The basic objective of the project is to help farms plan for climate change, by running a series of Farm Gate workshops and providing incentives to establish essential shade and shelter for stock.
Shade is essential for livestock health and productivity. It is important to take a look around your paddocks and assess what your stock needs are. Do you need shelter from cold winter winds? Or is summer shade more of a primary need on your property?
Our project has two components:
1. Farm Gate workshops – To provide information around the forecast impacts of climate change in North East Victoria and present a series of tools and management practices that can be implemented at the farm scale to assist farms in coping with these extremes in climate (rain, frost, heat). These workshops will use practical examples to improve knowledge and build capacity for change and adoption.
Proposed workshops include:
- Climate change – what does this mean for our farming communities and how can you adapt your farming practices? Held 25th October 2018
- The value of shade and shelter – Productivity gains, design guidelines and environmental benefits. Held 19th November 2018
- Farm Dams – Protecting and conserving your on-farm water supplies and long term strategies for coping in dry times. Held 11th February 2019
- Farm biodiversity – Identifying and protecting your assets. Held 24th March 2019.
2. On ground works – A property plan that considers the location of biodiversity assets, water supplies and need for shade and shelter will be developed for each property. Fencing and revegetation incentives will be offered to the landholder to establish new shelter belts or emergency shade blocks. Locations for these belts will be prioritised based on consideration of landscape connectivity, inclusion of biodiversity assets such as large old scattered paddock trees, and achieving multiple site objectives such as reducing erosion and soil disturbance.
We have actively worked on our onground works program over two years for this project. The final works program comprised:
- Twenty nine shade and shelter sites were completed in 2019 and two sites finalised in winter 2020.
- In total 31 new shade and shelter sites were established across the catchment over a total area of 17.7ha.
- 10.5km of fencing was erected, with 11.9ha of revegetation established using both direct seeding and planted tubestock.
- 5800 tubestock were planted, comprising of 1600 trees and 4200 shrubs.
- 7 laminated property plans were also developed for those landholders who had never used these as a planning tool previously.
Photos for a selection of our project sites are shown below. Please hover over the photo to read the caption for each site.
The Group has been successful in receiving funding under Round 2 and Round 3 of the Smart Farms, Small Grants program. This funding will allow us to continue rolling out a program of developing shade and shelter sites across our catchment. Please check our current projects for more information.
This project is supported by the Greta Valley Landcare Group through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.