Invasive Buffel grass targeted on eastern Eyre Peninsula
Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula is working with local land managers to control the declared weed species Buffel grass (Cenchrus ciliaris) in priority areas on northern Eyre Peninsula, particularly in and around Whyalla, Cowell and Cleve districts.
Natural Resources Management Officer Corey Yeates said this year the focus has been on survey and treatment, education and combining resources to maximise environmental outcomes to tackle the highly invasive species that has a pattern of invading and spreading from road verges.
“Reporting new Buffel grass outbreaks and treating these infestations at correct times is fundamental if we are to get the upper hand on this species.” Corey said.
“Working together is important - we want to work closely with land managers on Eyre Peninsula so everyone understands how to identify Buffel grass and what actions are needed to prevent further spread.
“This year we’ve made a concerted effort to provide more than 100 Buffel grass control information packs to local property owners and involve eastern Eyre Peninsula landholders in identification workshops.”
Aboriginal Partnerships Natural Resources Management Officer Fred Pickett, who assists in a targeted control program which monitors known priority sites and surveys for new infestations across the peninsula, said early summer rains have caused huge growth in Buffel grass this year.
“We’ve intensively surveyed 80 kilometres of land along and surrounding the Lincoln Highway north of Whyalla,” Fred said.
“We’ve now treated more than fifty infestations and more than 350 buffel grass plants, from the survey. “In, Port Neill, Arno Bay, Elbow Hill, Cleve areas and the outskirts of Cowell we treated buffel grass with fluprophenate spray and granules in February and continued through March, with more than 5,000 plants now controlled.
“We are vigilant in accessing the effectiveness of our control methods and maintain an adaptive management approach. For example we’re now integrating Pine Oil as a new biocontrol treatment method on our most challenging regrowth sites, with the aim of making Buffel grass seeds nonviable in coming years.”
Eyre Peninsula is classed as a Buffel grass Eradication Zone.
Buffel grass is a declared weed species and people are legally obliged to control and remove any infestations on their properties under the Natural Resources Management Act.
To receive a Buffel grass information pack or for further information call (08) 8628 2077 or visit www.landscape.sa.gov.au/ep/plants-and-animals/pest-plants-and-animals/pest-plants
This work is part funded by the National Landcare Programme.