Fencing out flood damage

FLOOD-affected landholders now have a new string of strategies in readiness for future flood events, following a series of workshops held by NRM North last week.

At Cluan last Wednesday and at Rosevale on Saturday, presenters offered information that could help minimise flood damage on a property, with the focus on how to better understand riverine processes, design flood-resilient fences and how to undertake effective streamside revegetation.

Julian Martin from Water Technology led the discussion on broadscale riverine processes, flood resilience, rehabilitation and stream management.

Stephen Griffiths Griffiths Fencing Solutions demonstrated the benefits of “drop down” fencing to prevent fences from being destroyed in a flood.

Herbert Staubmann from Habitat Plants and Denis Giasli from Land Management North offered advice about effective revegetation practises and managing streamside vegetation.

Tim Reed from Wenlock Enterprises discussed fencing design on floodplains, with the final workshop held on his Rosevale property.

As someone who has accessed Tamar Action grants to improve stock management around waterways, prevent riverbank erosion and pathogen runoff, situations that are magnified in times of flooding, Mr Reed was able to offer guidance on how best to spend any grant money with maximum effect.

His background as a fencing contractor proved particularly valuable in going through step by step how to design and build a floodproof fence.

“Of course you can’t control Mother Nature, but you can work with it.

“No-one wants to see their fencing destroyed or have inadequate fencing to move stock to where they need to be during a flood or to prevent stock from getting stuck in mud or rising water,” Mr Reed said.

“Flooding causes havoc with infrastructure, pump sheds, laneways, causes erosion of topsoil, cuts of access to parts of properties and worst of all affects animal health, whether its fluke, snake bite or drownings.

“Correct fencing with appropriate materials is crucial to mitigating all of this – not to mention saving time and money in the aftermath.”

NRM North program manager Jesse Webster said the workshops were a valuable collaboration offering an

opportunity for landholders to learn and connect.

“The workshops tie in well with NRM North’s Tamar Action Grant program, which is designed to improve waterway health through stock exclusion methods, and the Small Farm Living program that

helps smallholders improve environmental values through the sharing of knowledge,” Mr Webster said.

The project was supported with funding provided by the Federal and State governments through the Launceston City Deal.