Steve Jarvis ‘Heathfield’ has been working with South East Local Land Services on a long term plan to improve the productivity, environmental value and ‘liveability’ of his property for a number of years.
“I think everyone would like a pleasant place to live and work. Farms are a little different to most work places but one of my motivations over the years has been to create a nicer place to be,” Steve said.
In collaboration with South East Local Land Services, Steve has established wildlife corridors by planting clusters and paddock trees to provide habitat and diversity of vegetation to entice native wildlife and also to provide shelter for stock in their self -replacing merino operation.
“South East Local Land Services has provided funding to our business to plant single native paddock trees as well as trees in small clusters. Although the area fenced off to trees has increased, our stock numbers haven’t decreased, our stock know and use the shelter, whether it be the off shears sheep or lambing ewes,” Steve said.
The Tablelands Land Management grants are funded by Catchment Action NSW and the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.
Land managers who want to implement sustainable grazing practices, provide shelter for their stock and improve the environmental values on their property are encouraged to get in touch to see if they are eligible to receive funding.
“Viewing our landscape tells us the vast proportion of our old trees are nearing the end of their life and yet some of our iconic species such as the superb parrot will not survive without the hollows these trees provide. Equally as important, can you imagine being an animal in a paddock on a 40 degree day without shade? We need paddock trees!”
“Local Land Services have also provided funding to subdivide paddocks, this allows us to manage our ground cover better as grazing management encourages better pastures. We’re also gaining huge benefits from being able to lamb ewes in smaller mobs, gaining better lambing percentages,” Steve said.
Sari Glover, Yass/Boorowa area local manager says that land managers come to the program with a variety of motivations, “the outcomes that need to be met to receive a grant are quite clear, but we find that each land manager will come to us for a slightly different reason. We are seeing that there is a clear concern for productivity, but also a desire to leave the land in a better condition than when they found it. Programs like the grants we have on offer at the moment are a great way to demonstrate that these two aims can be achieved in unison”.
For Steve Jarvis, it has been worth the time and effort, “I truly believe we need to farm in tune with nature and not continually fight it. The collaboration has helped our business to consider our farm as a whole”.
To find out more about the 2017/2018 round of Tablelands Land Management grants, visit southeast.lls.nsw.gov.au or contact your nearest Local Land Services office.