Marine Estate Management Strategy making a difference on the South Coast

June 2020

Andrew Britton, Small landholder engagement officer

Greg Tedders, Land Services Officer, South Coast

The Crooked River catchment near Gerringong is an important estuary system supporting a variety of agricultural enterprises including dairy, beef and viticulture. The catchment and estuary is also an area of significant natural beauty, a popular recreational destination and an important biodiversity corridor linking the Illawarra escarpment with Seven Mile Beach National Park.

The Crooked River Estuary has become a success story in the New South Wales Marine Estate Management Strategy. One of the aims of this strategy is to improve water quality by protecting creek and estuary foreshores. Over the past three years, Local Land Services has supported landholders to protect over 80% of the Crooked River estuary foreshore.

Fencing to protect the waters edge from grazing stock allows the regenerating natural vegetation to filter run-off from surrounding paddocks, improving water quality and biodiversity within the catchment. Improved water quality and the re-establishment of native vegetation communities such as Swamp Oak Forest, Saltmarsh and Mangroves will lead to a healthier and more resilient estuary system.

Crooked river stockCrooked River replanting

Five landholders on the Crooked River estuary have now erected 9.2 kilometres of fencing, protecting 14.25 hectares of estuary wetland and floodplain forest and established over 10,000 trees. Protecting and enhancing these vegetation communities attracts wildlife and pollinators, improves fish breeding habitat and provides shade and shelter for stock.

A short video case study has been produced covering some of the work that has been done across the catchment - watch here.

For more information about the Marine Estate Strategy and other local riparian projects contact your Local Land Services office.

This project has been funded by the NSW Marine Estate Management Strategy: Improving water quality and reducing litter (Riverbank vegetation rehabilitation) program. For more details visit

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