WITH above average rainfall expected to continue into the New Year, Gippsland landholders are being urged to take advantage of every opportunity they have to undertake control works on declared invasive weeds.
Agriculture Victoria’s established invasive engagement officer, Jenny Bell, is encouraging landowners to undertake control works on declared invasive weeds such as ragwort, blackberry and thistle species.
“High rainfall years can see a large growth of noxious weeds and with continuing wet conditions, weeds are expected to flourish,” said Ms Bell.
“Undertaking early control measures when there is a break in wet conditions will make a difference to the growth and spread of invasive weeds.
“In the long-term, early spraying with follow-up action is a more efficient and cost-effective approach to meeting landholder responsibilities under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994.”
All landholders have a responsibility to take reasonable steps to prevent the growth and spread of regionally controlled weeds on their property, to safeguard agricultural production and the environment across Gippsland.
Agriculture Victoria’s leading biosecurity officer, Alex Pattinson, said local biosecurity officers were getting the jump on noxious weeds.
“The team has been working with over 40 landowners across Bass Coast, Baw Baw and South Gippsland shires to assess noxious weed infestations, particularly ragwort,” she said.
“These visits provide an opportunity for biosecurity officers to assess infestation levels on properties and discuss control measures with landholders for the duration of the spring and summer season.
“Despite seasonal difficulties, landholders still need to actively carry out control work this season, with several prescribed measures available for these species over a range of terrain and weather conditions.”
Further information about weed identification and control measures can be found on the Agriculture Victoria website www.agriculture.vic.gov.au or by calling the Customer Service Centre on 136 186.