Conservation



Project 1: Cudgen Creek Riparian Restoration Project:

MACS have a team working with local schools that are actively restoring a significant section of Cudgen Creeks unique riverbank vegetation. This area is also known as riparian vegetation and it is extremely important for river health among its many roles this vegetation provides critical habitat for many native animals such as birds and small mammals. Riparian vegetation also acts as a buffer zone that actively catches and removes toxins and chemicals such as oil and excess nutrients that would otherwise enter and pollute the sensitive estuary that is home to ecologically endangered communities such as sea grass beds and mangroves that are nursery grounds for a diverse range of marine life and food for such magnificent creatures as green turtles.

  • The Cudgen Creek project has involved removing the many threatening exotic weeds by manual removal and chemical spraying performed by qualified bush regenerators. This saw a dramatic reduction in the proportion of exotic weeds compared to natives in the riparian zone. It was evident that there was huge potential for great regeneration of the weeded site as there was a high level of natural regeneration evident (native saplings already growing).
  • This was followed by planting hundreds of locally produced trees in zone 1 and 2 (see site map, figure 1). These trees were planted by Kingscliff high school kids and the MACS team working together over many weeks.
  • After planting the September rains finally came and gave the much needed water needed for establishing the many hundreds of saplings. The spring rains and sun also trigger the extant seed banks of the many exotic weeds to grow. Therefor stage three is the second stage of weeding and spraying of the exotic weeds that threaten the native vegetation regrowth.
  • A further 100 plants are to be planted in zone 3 and 4 (see site map, figure 1) This will be conducted by primary and high school students from Kingscliff along with the MACS Cares crew members.
  • A further 100 plants are to be planted in zone 3 and 4 (see site map, figure 1) This will be conducted by primary and high school students from Kingscliff along with the MACS Cares crew members.

Site Location

Restoration of Cudgen Creeks (Located in Kingscliff) riparian vegetation that integrates education workshops and hands on rehabilitation works. This project has and will continue to utilise community capacity by involving local people including schools and businesses.


Objectives

  • The education of the public to the issues relating to biodiversity, sustainability, river and marine ecosystem health , catchment pollution and how to manage these issues
  • Public education on site workshops aimed at identifying key threatening processes in the local river environment and demonstration of how these issues can be overcome by the community.
  • Rehabilitate significant sections of local rivers including Cudgen Creek to improve river health. This is mainly focussed on riparian vegetation restoration to improve biodiversity, water quality and the prevention of catchment pollutants, carbon and nutrients entering the waterway.