Haystack Landcare group erosion control

Haystack Landcare group broadscale erosion control

Key achievements

  • The joining of erosion schemes and connecting property-to-property waterways.
  • Increasing landholder’s education and awareness of soil erosion.
  • Improved creek systems due to stabilisation of soil erosion and prevention of guttering.
  • Linkages to drop off points from the top of the catchment to the bottom.

The challenge

The Haystack Landcare group was formed in North West NSW to remedy severe widespread soil erosion caused by high intensity rainfall in late 1994, particularly in the Bellata area.

The Soil Conservation Service (SCS) was contracted to plan, design, layout and implement a comprehensive system of soil and water conservation earthwork.

Work undertaken

Our specialist team undertook a wide range of works on this project, including the development of sub-catchment plans for shared waterway and banking systems.

We worked directly with over 25 landholders to treat more than 20,000 hectares of prime agricultural land.

The SCS team designed across sub-catchments and individual property systems, surveyed soil and water conservation earthworks of the system and constructed the majority of the earthworks with SCS machinery.

It also continues to monitor and maintain the system.

Landholders were subsidised for 50 per cent of the value of the works that had shared benefit.

These included waterways, top catchment banks, and large diversion banks.


The system was developed and implemented within a six-year time frame.

It has been a successful project which has limited the amount of soil loss from this extremely valuable soil resource area.

Given the variety of land use practices and rainfall events, maintenance is required on a system of this scale.

The SCS implements much of this ongoing maintenance on a fee-for-service basis.