Coastal dune restoration

Protecting the coast: Sand dunes covered in vegetation. Photo: Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources

Protecting the coast: Sand dunes covered in vegetation. Photo: Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources

Cath Bell has reviewed the success of a five year coastal project, called Implementing Limestone Coast and Coorong Action Plan, which ended in June this year.

“Through the life of the project, we (Natural Resources South East) have worked with South East councils including DC Robe to address various threats to coastal habitats, one of which was revegetating a total of 200 hectares of coastal areas and habitats, with sand dune areas being targeted in various locations according to need,” she said.

“All revegetation work used local plant species found naturally in those habitats, and weeds were often removed from those areas when practical.

“Coastal dune environments are fragile and susceptible to erosion when vegetation is disturbed or removed.  

“Unmanaged access across dunes can lead to their destabilisation which is an issue for houses built behind the dunes.”

In the Robe area there has been planting along the upgraded coastal walking trail, from the Obelisk Lookout to West Beach. 

Robe Coastcare volunteers helped to plant over 5000 plants in an effort to improve the aesthetics and stability of these fragile habitats.

The trail is a fantastic community asset and we need to ensure the integrity of this area is maintained,” Cath said.

“Another area in Robe that has been rehabilitated through this project is the dune that runs between Fox’s Beach and the Esplanade.

“This dune was being seriously eroded by a multitude of ad hoc access trails occurring down to the beach.

“A fence was erected and foot traffic directed to common access areas and at least 1000 plants went in over the five year project with assistance from volunteers (Robe Coastcare and International Student Volunteers).

“There are also a small active groups of concerned residents opposite Town Beach who have been trying hard to restabilise the foredune with some success by revegetation, signage and matting.

“Our project had other larger key sites for rehabilitation in other council areas such as Blackford Drain, Lake Bonney and Kungari coastal dune crown land (north of Kingston Burial Grounds).”

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