The deliberate removal of timber rails from fencing protecting a $80k restoration project on the Te Onetea Stream has left project partners and the adjoining landowner staggered by this thoughtless act.
The pictured railing is part of a $20,000.00 investment by the Waikato District Council to support restoration efforts lead by Waikato RiverCare to exclude stock from the stream and to plant native trees along 1,570m of the Te Onetea Stream.
Unaware that the fence railing had been removed, the adjoining landowner placed 120 cows in the lake side paddock for a couple of days grazing.
the paddock contained good grass cover keeping most stock happy with only a handful of animals finding the open access into the planting. Stock damage to the planting covers a 1.2km section of the planting but it could have been significantly worse had more stock accessed the planting zone. It's really only good luck that saved the planting from significant damage.
Waikato RiverCare's operations manager Kevin Hutchinson is hopeful planned in-fill planting in 2021 will cover any gaps created by this stock incursion.
If you have any information that could be helpful in identifying the individuals involved in removing the fence railing please email email@example.com. Be assured any information provide will be held in confidence by Waikato RiverCare Inc.