Stream or river banks are riparian areas, and the plants that grow there are called riparian vegetation.
It’s a pretty important part of our catchment because it:
- Holds the soil together with its roots to protect the streambank from erosion
- Improves water quality by acting as a natural filter for contaminated run-off water
- Provides shade to cool the water
- Slows down speeding water during heavy rains and floods so the soil isn’t washed away
- Is an important link between the water and land for animals
- Provides food, shelter and shade for insects and all types of animals like lizards, frogs and birds (and even platypus, yabbies, turtles and water dragons in our catchment)
- Connects upper and lower catchment plant and animal populations through its ‘green corridor’
Many of our catchment’s riparian zones are in poor shape and at risk of further erosion. The biggest threats are:
- weed invasion, feral animals, fire, overgrazing, erosion, urban development, clearing and human activity
What can you do?
- Wash your vehicle on the grass and not on the driveway or road. The polluted water will seep into the ground and stay out of the stormwater[link to ‘Stormwater’] drain
- Slow down along the waterways to reduce your boat wash
- Keep pets and stock away
- Use the boat ramp
- Reduce the amount of fertiliser used on the garden
- Use your green bins to dispose of grass clippings
- Join a Landcare group to protect and restore your local bushland.