Latest news

News items and media releases are stored on this page of our website for six months. Older media releases are available by emailing communications@wgcma.vic.gov.au. Our latest news stories are below.

New grants available through Smart Farms

Landholders and community groups can now apply for up to $200,000 under round 2 of Smart Farms Small Grants.

Do you have an interest in the future of Rainbow Creek?

On Saturday, 8 December a community information session will be held at the Cowwarr Public Hall to talk about the long-term vision for Rainbow Creek.

Celebrating a great stop

Members of the Albert River Landcare Group got together last week to celebrate their work revitalising the Albert River Road Reserve in partnership VicRoads, Yarram Yarram Landcare Network and West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA).

New irrigator reference group

Are you an irrigator in the Lake Wellington catchment? This includes irrigators in the Macalister Irrigation District as well as those around the Latrobe, Thomson, Macalister and Avon rivers.

Citizen science only a snap away

A quick photo on an iPhone could help capture valuable information on the local environment and contribute to a decade-long database of visual monitoring.

Fishway contract awarded

Woods Environmental Services has been awarded the contract to re-connect the Thomson River by creating a fishway at Horseshoe Bend.

New funding for local projects

We have been announced as the successful service provider to deliver the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program Regional Land Partnerships.

Another big year for Victorian CMAs

Victoria’s catchment management authorities (CMAs) have had another strong year, delivering healthier waterways and catchments, jobs and more liveable communities right across the state.

When rivers are healthy, everyone shares the benefits

When it’s dry, the environment needs water too. That’s why environmental flows will be released in the Macalister, Thomson and Latrobe rivers at the start of November.

Spartina control continues

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority is working with Parks Victoria to control Spartina with targeted spraying in Anderson Inlet, Shallow Inlet and Corner Inlet during October and November.

Gippsland on show for International Landcare guests

Two international Landcare delegates have visited Gippsland as part of a program to share ideas and extend the Landcare movement worldwide.

Kathleen named National Young Landcare Leader.

Inverloch’s Kathleen Brack has been named at the National Landcare Awards in Brisbane as the Austcover Young Landcare Leader of the year.

Vigilant willow maintenance

Keeping a close eye on noxious weeds is a key part of managing the health of our waterways.

Nurturing nature with Junior Landcare grants

Six local schools have received $25,110 as part of the Victorian Junior Landcare and Biodiversity Grants announced this week. Primary schools at Airly, Boisdale, Fish Creek, Traralgon and Woodside, as well as an early learning centre in Sale were among the 109 successful applicants announced by the Minister for the Environment, The Hon. Lily D’Ambrosio earlier this month.

Thomson River Fishway Tender underway

The West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) is calling for public tenders to create a fishway on the Thomson River at Horseshoe Bend.

Work on farms protects Corner Inlet

More than 25,000 trees planted at a Toora North property, to help stop erosion in its steep gullies, is having a flow on effect to improving seagrass and fish habitat in Ramsar listed Corner Inlet.

Landcare grants for West Gippsland

Minister for the Environment, Lily D’Ambrosio, announced $165,698 funding for Victorian Landcare Grants in West Gippsland.

New wetlands on the lower Latrobe

A large wetland on the lower Latrobe River has filled and dried for the first time since restoration works were completed in June 2017.

Celebrating NAIDOC week with the CMA

NAIDOC Week is held each July to acknowledge and celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Fishway and heritage get green light at Horseshoe Bend

Heritage Victoria has granted the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) a permit to proceed with the Thomson River Fishway subject to conditions.

Clearing willows from waterways

Willows and waterways may be a perfect combination in childhood stories, but in real life willows pose a serious threat to the health of our waterways.

Covering old ground

Perry Bridge farmers Jen Ribolli and David and Ruth Read are leading the way with their regenerative approach to pasture management. Over the last sixteen years, the family’s beef and sheep farm has pioneered innovative techniques in soil health and perennial pastures with impressive results.

TOGETHER WE CAN IMPROVE WATERWAYS

When fishing groups and catchment management authorities work together, it’s a win-win situation for the rivers, fish and the anglers.

Targeting willows at their source

The far upper reaches of the Franklin and Agnes rivers in South Gippsland are inaccessible to most, but these pristine waterways have been the focus of a new program aimed at tackling willow infestations.

Embracing the chance to improve farming methods

The pressures of running a farm make it hard to take time out to learn about new methods and ideas, but for Foster farmer David Hall, it’s an essential part of his business.

At the Core of farm improvements

With twenty-five years’ experience and an agriculture degree, Ron Paynter knows a thing or two about farming. Even so, he says the day-to-day pressures of running a farm stop him from implementing all the systems and procedures he’d like to.

Watering gates help protect the Heart

New water control gates at the south eastern end of Heart Morass will allow water into and out of the wetland helping to improve the health of the wetland and provide improved habitat for the animals that call it home.

Community embrace ponds

An enthusiastic group of local residents came together this month at the Munro Hall to learn more about the Protecting Our Ponds project.

Grants available for Landcare

The 2018 round of the Victorian Landcare Grants are now open!

Low river flows lead to Powlett closure

Low rainfall in 2018 has resulted in low river flows and natural river closures at estuary mouths across Victoria. The Powlett River is one of those that has recently closed its connection to the ocean.

Macalister farmers get smart about fertilisers

More efficient and effective use of fertilisers by farmers in the Macalister Irrigation Area should see a reduction in the amount of nutrients entering the Gippsland Lakes.

Exploring Sustainable Agriculture

A two-day bus trip across Gippsland in April highlighted the successes and challenges facing agriculture in the region.

Gippsland Intrepid Landcare in Sandy Point

On the last weekend in April, Gippsland Intrepid Landcare held their first ever Landcare retreat down at Sandy Point. Gippsland Intrepid Landcare are a volunteer based organisation and believe that we are all lucky to live within such a precious and beautiful region.

Healthy rivers support healthy communities

Healthy rivers supply water for towns, farms and businesses and contribute to local economies through industries such as agriculture, fishing and tourism.

Creating healthy habitat for fish

For the past decade, Richard Allen has quietly gone to war with an invasive species that threatens some of our most beloved waterways. As a keen fisherman, Richard knows unhealthy waterways have an enormous impact on the fish population. Luckily, his passion for fishing intersects neatly with his role as a Project Coordinator for West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA). Part of his job involves overseeing a weed control program aimed at eradicating Spartina, an invasive weed that can destroy inter-tidal zones and habitat.

Creek works help protect iconic trestle bridge

Recent works at Stockyard Creek will help protect the iconic trestle bridge at a popular access point just downstream from Foster.

Help Protect our Ponds

Help protect our ponds The Perry River and Providence Ponds community are invited to come along on Wednesday, 2 May to the Munro Hall for an update on the Protecting our Ponds project being organised by West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority.

Landcare Victoria Inc and Vic Catchments sign landmark MoU

On Thursday 12th April 2018, Mr Terry Hubbard, the chair of Landcare Victoria Inc., and Dr Peter Veenker, the chair of Vic Catchments, signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the two organisations to strengthen natural resource management in Victoria.

Honouring the past and creating a future at Horseshoe Bend

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) has applied to Heritage Victoria for a heritage permit which will allow it to proceed the Thomson River Fishway to tender.

Ready, set, colour!

This year for Close the Gap Day we have put together a colouring in competition featuring artwork by Bunurong artist Adam Magennis.

Restoring their patch

Mardan - Mirboo North Landcarers, Ian and Helen Hasty are restoring an eroded gully on their farm in Mardan, thanks to a grant from the South Gippsland Landcare Network and help from their local landcare group.

Partnering for healthy and productive catchments

With 1,400 dairy farms spread across the Gippsland region it makes sense for the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority to partner with the organisation that works with the region’s dairy farmers – GippsDairy/Dairy Australia.

Talk to the Hands Stories of Landcare - Episode 5

The 5th episode of "Talk to the Hands", is now live and it tells the story of the restoration of The Heart Morass.

Generating water for the environment and production

Water is an essential ingredient for producing food, to sustain local economies and for our rivers and streams to maintain the ecosystems that we value.

Landcare projects delivered

The five Landcare Networks in our region, have successfully delivered 26 individual Landcare projects between them as part of the 2016/17 Victorian Landcare grants.

Have your say on sustainable irrigation

Farmers and irrigators can have their say on the Lake Wellington Land and Water Management Plan which aims to make sure the catchment continues to be an attractive irrigation region and its valuable environmental and cultural features are protected. WGCMA Chief Executive Officer, Martin Fuller, said the aim of the plan is to involve irrigators in programs that save water, increase productivity and retains nutrients and soil on farms.

Actions and achievements of Victoria’s CMAs on show in new report

Victoria’s CMAs have showcased the role they play in protecting and enhancing the state’s land, water and biodiversity through the release of their 2016-17 Actions and Achievements Report. The Victorian Catchment Management Authorities’ Actions and Achievement Report 2016-17 was released by the Hon Lisa Neville MP and outlines contributions the 10 CMAs have made to Victoria’s environment, economy and liveability.

Enviro champions announced

Sale’s Gary Howard, Inverloch’s Angus Hume and Bass Coast Shire Council’s Strategic Planning Team have been named this year’s winners of the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority’s (WGCMA) Lyrebird Awards.

High achievers in natural resource management

Winners of the West Gippsland Lyrebird Awards, which honour and promote outstanding achievements in natural resource management, will be announced in Inverloch on Friday, 8 December.

Funding for dairy farmers

Dairy farmers in the Stratford, Sale, Heyfield and Maffra areas could receive up to $15,000 of funding per project to help keep nutrient and sediments on their farms.

$100k in funding for Landcare groups

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) has provided $100,000 in funding split between 24 Landcare groups.

Spartina control continues

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority is working with Parks Victoria to control Spartina with targeted spraying in Anderson Inlet, Shallow Inlet and Corner Inlet in November.

20 years on the Macalister

Over the last 20 years thousands of tonnes of nutrients and sediments have been saved from entering the Macalister River and ultimately the Gippsland Lakes thanks to a partnership between farmers, landowners, Landcare, the community and the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority.

Farming off the grid

Using renewable energy to power a new grazing enterprise will be one of the main topics for discussion at a Healthy Soils Sustainable Farms field day at Cape Liptrap on Tuesday, 14 November.

High up in the Headwaters

A project to tackle willow control in the headwaters of the Avon and Macalister rivers is creating big benefits downstream.

Protecting our precious inlet with Parks Victoria

Corner Inlet and Nooramunga consist of shallow marine waters, intertidal mudflats and around forty islands. The inlet is home to the only extensive seagrass (Posidonia australis) meadow in southern Australia and the waterbody is vital for fish breeding and migratory birds, the area is listed as a Ramsar site* and a marine and coastal park.

Protecting the Catchment and Protecting the Catch

Corner Inlet and Norramunga includes a complex network of intertidal mangroves, saltmarsh, mud banks, seagrass beds, islands and deeper channels. Multiple rivers flow through a highly productive catchment to converge at the inlet which is home to many rare species of plants and animals and supports healthy economies.

Traditional Owners Work on Country to protect Corner Inlet

Traditional owners are playing a vital role in preserving cultural heritage, providing direction and getting work done in the Corner Inlet catchment area.

Flexible funding boon for MID irrigators

Macalister Irrigation District (MID) irrigators now have the flexibility to apply for funding for on-farm irrigation upgrades when they are ready and prepared to do the works.

Annual report highlights solid NRM effort

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority's 2016/17 Annual Report was recently tabled in Parliament outlining a range of achievements and challenges faced over the year.

Tree planting revitalises seagrass and fish populations

A project to plant more than 20,000 native trees at Silcocks Hill, outside Toora, has seen an improvement in the health of seagrass beds and fish populations in the Corner Inlet Marine and Coastal Park. Since the planting of the trees, which began in 2012, run off from the degraded agricultural land has decreased, contributing to a reduction in sediment and nutrient loads into the Ramsar-listed Corner Inlet, and revitalising seagrass and fish populations.

Celebrating 20 Years of Catchment Management

This year, West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA), celebrates its 20th Anniversary and is looking forward to working with the community and partners to make a difference for many years to come.

Broadening Horizons at Corner Inlet

Parks Victoria, West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority, Birdlife Australia and Victorian Fisheries Authority joined forces this week to deliver the Broadening Horizons project for Year 8 students at Foster Secondary College.

Talk to the Hands Stories of Landcare - Episode 2

The 2nd episode of 'Talk to the Hands' tells the story of how a beautiful wetland was created by a local community for the benefit of the sporting oval.

Talk to the Hands Stories of Landcare - Episode 1

This first episode of 'Talk to the Hands' tells a wonderful story of the Black Spur Wetlands, situated between Koonwarra and Meeniyan.

My first Intrepid Landcare experience

Gippsland Intrepid Landcare is aiming to bring a new generation of young people to Landcare by creating fun, innovative and adventurous Landcare events.

Korumburra Landcare Group

The Korumburra Landcare group formed in 1994 and covers the upper Powlett catchment, which starts in Main Street, Korumburra.

GrazFert

GrazFert is a new program run by Agriculture Victoria​, that helps beef and sheep producers understand their soil and nutrient requirements and make better decisions about fertiliser inputs on farm.

Outstanding contributor to Landcare

Anthony Lalor and his wife Cathy are dairyfarmers in Willow Grove. Anthony started in Landcare when the Tanjil Valley Landcare Group formed 20 years ago.

Wonderful contribution to Landcare

Leon and Cathy Trembath were recognised for their wonderful contribution to Landcare at our recent green carpet awards.

Powlett River mouth opened

After a three month closure, the Powlett River Mouth was artificially opened on Friday 7 July. This was in response to conditions which enabled a safe and sustained opening.

Transforming the landscape

When Katie and Ben found their property at Toora North, they knew it was exactly what they wanted for their family - 35 acres of lush, green forest featuring a picture-perfect 1920s wood cabin.

Life could be a Dream

Dream Island, off the coast of McLoughlins Beach in South Gippsland, is a dream for local nesting shorebirds and migratory waders.

Perry River and Providence Ponds Forum

More than 40 people packed the Munro Hall in May to discuss issues facing the Perry River and Providence Ponds as part of the Perry River Our Catchments Our Communities Project.

Water releases for the environment in winter

Water for the environment will be released down the Thomson and Macalister rivers over winter to help trigger the downstream migration and spawning of Australian bass and tupong.

Extra water for plants and fish in the Thomson River

Plants and wildlife that rely on the Thomson River for food and shelter will receive a boost thanks to an additional eight gigalitres (GL) (on average) being granted for the benefit of the Thomson River ecosystem.

Improving beef and sheep production in the Jack and Albert rivers

On the 29th of May, farmers in the Jack and Albert rivers have the opportunity to hear from an agricultural expert and a local farmer on how improving fertiliser programs has saved one farm around $30,000 this year.

An intrepid success

Environmentally-minded young people from across Gippsland congregated at Wilsons Prom last weekend as part of Victoria’s first Intrepid Landcare Retreat.

Powlett River mouth closure provides habitat

Low river flows have allowed a sandbar to build up at the mouth of the Powlett River closing the river to the ocean. West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority CEO, Martin Fuller, said the closure provides important habitat for plants and animals

Landcare - benefits the whole community

Martin Slate, an organic beef producer at Fumina South has been involved with Landcare for about 27 years, starting when he became one of the founding members of the Tanjil Valley Landcare Group.

A lifetime of caring for the land

Some people just know what they are meant to do, right from the word go. Ian Cornthwaite started his first plant nursery when he was nine years old and by the age of 14, he was selling plants to passers-by and had a nursery sign on the roadside shed.

Kilmany, Pearsondale, Nambrok Landcare Group

The Thomson and Latrobe rivers are generally well known in central Gippsland. However, the 50-kilometre channel network, made up of the ‘Central Gippsland Drain Numbers Two and Three, which connects the two waterways, are less known.

Landcare legends shine on Green Carpet

Twenty-five local Landcare individuals and groups were recognised on Sunday, 30 April for their outstanding contribution to the environment as part of West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority’s (WGCMA) Green Carpet Awards.

Their future is our future

Every summer, Corner Inlet in South Gippsland is a hive of activity - and it’s not just tourists that flock to the area to visit the adjacent Wilsons Promontory. Thousands of migratory waterbirds, including snipe, sandpipers, and tern, travel to the Ramsar listed inlet and its barrier sand islands as part of their annual nesting, feeding, and breeding lifecycle.

Local scouts learn about natural resource management

Twenty Scouts from the East Gippsland and Wellington districts attended a weekend camp at the Clive Disher Scouts Park, about 15 minutes south east of Stratford on 22 and 23 April.

What makes the Perry River special

West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) is looking for local knowledge about the Perry River and surrounding area to help inform a four year natural resource management project.

Cultural heritage training boosts awareness and confidence

Evaluation of cultural heritage training with the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation (BLCAC) has shown an increase in both awareness of and confidence working with the BLCAC.

Attention to detail drives success

Eleven years ago successful restaurateurs Jean-Paul Prunetti and Johanna Bails bought a property in Fish Creek to grow, harvest and serve the highest quality produce at their Melbourne restaurant France-Soir

Making a difference at Flooding Creek

On 30 April, the Flooding Creek Landcare Group will be recognised as part of the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority’s Green Carpet Landcare Awards.

Staying relevant for the community

On 30 April, the Three Creeks Landcare Group will be recognised as part of the West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority’s Green Carpet Landcare Awards.

First aid focus on mental health

Looking after the mental health of staff is just as important as looking after their physical health at West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA).

An Intrepid Retreat for young people in Gippsland

Are you under 35 and passionate about the local environment? Intrepid Landcare, in partnership with West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA), is bringing one of their signature Intrepid Landcare Leadership Retreats to Victoria.

Close the Gap event highlights traditional land use

On Wednesday, 16 March more than 35 people involved with natural resource management met with members of the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation (BLCAC) at Powlett River to better understand traditional land use.

Register now to get Fert$mart savings

Fert$mart, offered in partnership by GippsDairy and West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority, upskills farmers to make better decisions about fertiliser use on their properties.

Sign up to save money and boost productivity

Time is running out for dairy farmers in the Macalister Irrigation District to register their interest in the Fert$mart program – an opportunity that could see them slash their fertiliser bill.

Connecting and protecting

Landholders between Cape Paterson and Cape Liptrap are creating an environmental corridor for wildlife by improving and increasing native vegetation on their properties.

Progress shown in new report

A new report showing the overall progress of Catchment Management Authorities (CMA) has recently been released.

Wetlands - vital part of our ecosystem

World Wetlands Day, celebrated every year on February 2, promotes awareness globally about the importance of wetlands for humanity and the planet, and marks the date of the adoption of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands in 1971.

Pocket the Fert$mart savings

Farmers who want to cut their fertiliser budgets are being urged to sign up for Fert$mart courses being offered in the Macalister Irrigation District (MID) and Jack and Albert rivers catchment areas.

Local flood knowledge sought

Nothing beats local knowledge – that’s why community input is being sought for development of a new floodplain management strategy. West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority (WGCMA) is keen to hear from people with knowledge of the history of flooding across the region – from Tamboritha in the north, to Wilson’s Promontory in the south; and from San Remo in the west, to Lake Wellington in the east.

River blackfish find new homes

A fascinating trial conducted to find out if translocated river blackfish will stay in rehabilitated sections of river – effectively making a new ‘home range’ has been conducted in the Tarwin River.

Indigenous agriculture before European settlement

More than 120 Gippslanders are better informed about Indigenous agriculture thanks to a WGCMA Healthy Soils Sustainable Farms event.

Spring fresh - do we or don't we?

During winter and spring the Latrobe Catchment has experienced above average rainfall. This has meant the Latrobe, Thomson and Macalister rivers have all received a series of natural high flow freshes and bankfull events.

Flashback - Catch a Carp

Next year we will be celebrating 20 years of CMAs across Victoria. This is the first in a series of flashbacks - this one is from 2003 when we ran a 'Catch a Carp' event

Opening of Wreck Creek triggers fish migration

Wreck Creek in Inverloch has opened naturally to the ocean after high rainfall and freshwater flows increased the height of the water in the creek and broke through the build-up of sand at its mouth.

Protecting threatened species

The Growling Grass Frog, Powerful Owl, Lace Monitor, Swift Parrot and Tiger Quoll are among many Gippsland species set to benefit from works aimed at protecting habitat.

Landcare projects expressions of interest

Expressions of interest are now being sought for Landcare projects within the West Gippsland Region. All individuals, landholders and groups in West Gippsland interested in undertaking and receiving support for a Landcare project are encouraged to submit an expression of interest (EOI), as part of the 2016 Regional EOI Program before 30 September 2016.

Grayling make a splash in the Latrobe River

Environmental Water for Thomson's Native Fish

Environmental water from the Thomson Reservoir is timed this spring to provide conditions for the migration of important native and threatened fish species including Australian grayling. The spring fresh (environmental flow) will contribute to a controlled increase in streamflow in the Thomson River, with the peak spanning a four day period beginning Friday 30 October to Monday 2 November 2015.