The Mount Abundance Landcare group is located about 20km south of Muckadilla, 50km west of Roma in western Queensland. Part of the Queensland Murray Darling Basin, the group is supported by the Maranoa Regional Landcare Association and the Queensland Murray Darling Committee (QMDC) (http://www.qmdc.org.au).
The group has been in operation for around a decade, and have looked at issues such as weed management, erosion and grazing land management. In 2004 they started developing a sub-catchment plan (SCP) - a comprehensive plan for the management of their natural resources. The SCP involves addressing group-decided priority NRM issues, and compling action plans through working with QMDC, DPI and DNRW technical staff.
Their plan was approved in 2005, and included on-ground works, as well education and capacity building projects. On-ground projects have now been completed and are achieving results in areas such as riparian, remnant vegetation, and grazing land management.
On "Moonya" and "Tannaby", James and Natalie Stinson have completed two projects. These concentrated on fencing to land type, which will allow them to cater their grazing management to the particular characteristics of the different landtypes found on the property. This project also involved installing additional stock watering points, to further even out the grazing pressure.
One of the projects also included a ripping component. The properties have some hard ridge areas, which create large volumes of concentrated run-off in rain events. This run-off has resulted in gully erosion and scalded footslopes, which in turn result in further erosion.
A cutterbar has been used in these footslope areas to increase the infiltration of rainfall.
The result of these projects has been an increase in groundcover across the property and a decrease in erosion of top soil. This will also lead on to increases in water quality in the sub-catchment. And, because many other members of the group have implemented similar projects, these positive results will be repeated and magnified across the sub-catchment.
The Mt Abundance Landcare group plans to renew their sub-catchment plan during 2008, using a innovative programme, the Australian Landcare Management System. Aligned with the international standard for environmental management systems, this will allow the group to not only consider their priorities as a group for their sub-catchment, but also to stay on top of the game in terms of natural resource management.