A large scale honeysuckle control program has re-commenced along the Yea River in the Upland Slopes region of the Goulburn Broken catchment.
Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA) River Health Officer Kirsten Roszak said the work was part of the Hooray for the Yea project.
The Hooray for the Yea project, funded by the Victorian Government and delivered by the Goulburn Broken CMA, aims to improve the river’s health and support native fish populations, particularly of threatened species such as the Macquarie Perch, through on-ground works and continuing community involvement.
“From the results of a community survey undertaken last year as part of the project, we learned there was overwhelming concern about the presence of weeds along the Yea River, in particular, honeysuckle,” Ms Roszak said.
“As a result, the Goulburn Broken CMA commenced a honeysuckle control program last summer along the river through the township where it is abundant.” She said. “We have worked closely with all landholders living near the river to let them know about the planned work and everyone has been great in helping us with access and providing us with details about the honeysuckle control works.”
Contractors cut vines where the honeysuckle has climbed trees, and spray the growth along the ground. The impact of this work is very clear as the honeysuckle dies back, allowing the previously smothered native vegetation to once again flourish.
“If we can control the honeysuckle and allow the native vegetation to grow back it will improve the condition of the riparian zone, which will lead to a more resilient system.” Ms Roszak said. “Threatened species such as the Macquarie perch will benefit from an improved riparian zone, which will provide important habitat for native fauna species in years to come.”
“Landholders have been very supportive of the honeysuckle control works, which we really appreciate.” She said. “This is an excellent example of the Goulburn Broken CMA and the community working together to develop resilience in the catchment’s biodiversity, land, water and people.
“The Yea River will become a much more beautiful area for the community and visitors to enjoy.”
It is expected the honeysuckle control works will be completed early in the new year.
Ms Roszak reminded landholders with river frontage that funding support was also available to protect and enhance the river banks by carrying out revegetation and fencing works.
To find out more about the Hooray for the Yea and other Goulburn Broken CMA programs please visit www.gbcma.vic.gov.au or phone 03 5736 0100.