Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Keeping koalas and cattle well fed

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A healthy herd and healthy habitat are possible.

The Casino Food Co-op worked with Coffee Camp landowners Gary and Clare Brown in water catchment health and in establishing a koala habitat.

Co-op chief executive Simon Stahl said the project recognised the important relationship between landscape management and food production.

Joe Leven and Simon Stahl
Down to earth: Casino Co-Op’s Joe Leven and Simon Stahl. Photo: contributed.

As start-up beef farmers Clare and Gary said their vision was to run a productive cattle herd and support valuable on-farm ecosystem functions.

“This means grazing a healthy herd in an environment which offers biodiversity and clean running water into the catchment,” they said.

Bangalow Koalas and World Wildlife Fund donated 1800 koala habitat trees in a separate project on the river frontage.

“It’s a win all-round, the cattle have clean safe drinking water, the creek banks get a facelift after years of erosion and weed infestation and the koalas get a new home,” Mr Stahl said. “Central to our working relationship has been the recognition of the important relationship between food production and landscape management,” the Browns said.
“We have found a lot of support through introductions to other groups such as OzFish and Lismore City Council who supported us to construct a gravity-fed water system from a dam high in our catchment to troughs in strategic locations so cattle can have clean safe drinking water.

“We are very proud farmers to be able to say we have a healthy herd and a healthy habitat, this is very satisfying for our family.”

Linda Sparrow from Bangalow Koalas said their goal was to plant 100,000 trees across the Richmond Valley, Lismore and Kyogle shires in the next three years.

Richmond River Independent 28 April 2021

This article appeared in the Richmond River Independent, 28 April 2021.

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