Celebrating success: Willow removal

Video: Central Billabong landholders have been undertaking willow removal projects for over 15 years. Prior to these projects, in some areas the creek system had become blocked with willows. In this video, landholders Helene Mortlock, Russell Ford and Richard Sleigh celebrate the wonderful change they've witnessed since the removal of willows. Now, people and fish can navigate the creek system again.

View 'Wind down the Willows' flyer

Willow removal at 'Colombo'

The curtain of willows was removed at ‘Colombo’ in 2022 to reveal an iconic Australian view of sentinel redgums hanging over a meandering creek. Gary Williams from Jerilderie Earthmoving was out on the June long weekend clearing the willows (Salix babylonica) on Andrew Buckingham’s property at Colombo Creek. The water levels remained high, but with Gary’s excavator prowess he was able to scoop willows from deep within the creek.

As the willows had encroached into three-quarters of the creek, their removal directly improved Colombo Creek though better water flow. In the long term an overall healthier creek system is envisaged through rehabilitation of the riparian area with tubestock planting and natural regeneration.

If you are interested in willow removal on your patch of the Yanco Creek System, send an expression of interest to Andrea.

Before (2021): Willow infestation along the Colombo Creek
After (2022): Mechanical removal of willows along the Colombo Creek reveals the majestic redgums.
Planting tubestock to restore riparian vegetation along Colombo Creek.
A plan for revegetation after willow removal is essential for maintaining waterway health.


More success stories from this region

African Boxthorn biocontrol pilot project

You know you've hit on something big when farmers stop what they are doing, in one of the busiest months of the year, to keenly participate in a workshop. Interest in the African Boxthorn biocontrol pilot program demonstrated just how much of a problem Boxthorn is.

Colombo Creek fish habitat restoration project

Over the course of several events in late 2022 and early 2023, significant work has been undertaken to restore fish habitat on the Colombo Creek. Schoolkids helped plant trees, while a separate event was held to reduce carp numbers through electro-fishing.

Wetlands for Wildlife 2023

What's not to love about being outdoors amongst the redgums, planting and restoring wetlands on a sunny day, with kids having fun in the mud and a bbq? Plus, a great result for habitat and vegetation at this property on the Yanco Creek.

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The Refreshing Rivers Program is a collaboration between government, industry, research, and community organisations, led by Local Land Services. This Program has been assisted by the New South Wales Government through its Environmental Trust.

The Refreshing Rivers Program works on Country that always was and always will be Aboriginal land. We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land and waters, and we pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging.

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