Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Dollars And Sense In Streamside Planting

Dollars And Sense In Streamside Planting

Click for big version

Caption: Kaponga farmer Tom Gibson with well-established riparian planting on the banks of the Kaupokonui Stream.

Kaponga farmer Tom Gibson knows all about the value of stock. And about the value of streamside fences and plants.

A keen enthusiast for riparian (streamside) fencing and planting, he reckons it’s well worth the investment.

“I’d have to say, the cost of planting is a lot less than the cost of the stock I was losing,” he says. And that was even before the current large dairy payouts, which have pushed cow prices up to $2,500-$3,000 a head – enough to pay a contractor to put in around 800m of tax-deductible riparian fencing.

Mr Gibson has been implementing a riparian management plan on his 100 ha property for five years. And he’s had the benefit of hard lessons from earlier forays into streamside work, seeing stock demolish new plantings after flood-damaged fences weren’t repaired quickly enough.

Now it’s smooth sailing, however, with a contractor taking care of the hard graft and Mr Gibson happy to see the end of stock being lost by drowning or by being bogged.

“At calving time the cows would head for the streams, and often come down with milk fever. If you weren’t there when they got up again, they’d get into the stream and drown,” he says.

Liver fluke is another lurking peril for animals drinking from streams, while agricultural research has also shown that cows drinking from reticulated troughs tend to walk less, eat more and do better than cows drinking from streams.

For these reasons and more, Mr Gibson says riparian fencing and planting has made farm and stock management much easier – providing shelter, for example, making stock movement safer, and making break feeding simpler because the temporary line can be strung across the paddock to a fence alongside a stream.

He also appreciates the protection and enhancement of water quality – the reason that riparian fencing and planting is among the targets under the Dairying and Clean Streams Accord Regional Action Plan agreed to by Federated Farmers, Fonterra and the Taranaki Regional Council.

Properly established riparian buffers filter sediment and pollution, and reduce the speed of run-off, which moderates stream flows and reduces flooding.

Riparian buffers also provide food and shelter for wildlife and corridors for plants and birds. Streamside vegetation also reduces water temperatures and supplies food for aquatic insects that in turn provide food for fish.

“Land in Taranaki is among the most valuable in the world,” says Mr Gibson. “And it’s the same with the waterways. We need to keep them as clean and pristine as possible.”

He also sees riparian management as complementing his other environmental investments in such things as effluent systems and pumps. “We’ve gone to a lot of expense over the years and we need to protect that.”

Farmers interested in obtaining riparian management plans, or wanting advice on implementing existing plans, can call the Taranaki Regional Council and ask to speak to a Land Management Officer.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>


Half A Billion Accounts: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>

Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>


Half Full: Fonterra Raises Forecast Payout As Global Supply Shrinks

Fonterra Cooperative Group, the dairy processor which will announce annual earnings tomorrow, hiked its forecast payout to farmers by 50 cents per kilogram of milk solids as global supply continues to decline, helping prop up dairy prices. More>>



Meat Trade: Silver Fern Farms Gets Green Light For Shanghai Maling Deal

The government has given the green light for China's Shanghai Maling Aquarius to acquire half of Silver Fern Farms, New Zealand's biggest meat company, with ministers satisfied it will deliver "substantial and identifiable benefit". More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news