Get cows out of our rivers protest gets down and dirty

If this protest on the banks of the Yarra last Friday is anything to go by livestock farmers in Victoria are coming under a bit of pressure albeit as a result of pressure on the government to act.

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This is the blurb from the Cut the Crap website

Get livestock out of our rivers. It’s time to moove!

We’ve got some pretty spectacular rivers in Victoria. They provide us with the water we drink, and are the lifeblood of our ecosystems and communities. We can’t live without them. Nor can the thousands of native species that call our rivers home. Incredibly ecologically rich places, river banks provide important corridors for native animals, as they migrate and adapt to the changing climate.

So it would be udder madness to let cows and other livestock trample the banks and poo in the rivers, right?! Yet our riverbanks, including more than half the river frontage owned by the public, is open slather for livestock.

Every day 4,500 tonnes worth of cow poo lands in Victoria’s creeks and rivers. Not only does livestock access to rivers destroy habitat, cause erosion and muddy the water, but pooey river water ends up in drinking water catchments!

The solution is simple – fence off riverbanks, provide an alternative watering place for stock and let the riverbanks return to their natural state. It’s a win for the environment, and as it reduces risk of disease and injury to cows, this state-government funded program would be a win for farmers.

It’s time to moove cow out of our rivers.

Now as you can see from this video I share their ethos and have been very active in this space for quite some time

I am not alone. More than 70% of Australian dairy farmers acknowledge waterways are precious and are committed to keeping them healthy and clean.

So what would it take for the other 30% to jump on board? The stats say 9 out of 10 farmers learn from other farmers. The answer is simple. Its time to get out there and share our stories with each other as well as the community, form partnerships and tap into community good funding when its available and lobby the government when it isn’t . After all our farming families rely on healthy waterways just as much as anyone else – perhaps more

Author: Lynne Strong

I am a 6th generation farmer who loves surrounding myself with optimistic, courageous people who believe in inclusion, diversity and equality and embrace the power of collaboration. I am the founder of Picture You in Agriculture. Our team design and deliver programs that inspire pride in Australian agriculture and support young people to thrive in business and life