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Young leaders changing behaviour for the better

News article |

Around 60 young leaders from the region met at Bool Lagoon last month for this year’s final instalment of the South East NRM Board’s Young Environmental Leaders Program (YELP).

A protected native species on coastal dunes, yet a threatening pest just a kilometre away, Sallow wattle (Acacia longifolia) is on the radar as one to watch in the South East.

While not an officially declared pest, Natural Resources South East is encouraging control work to stop further spread.

Natural Resources Management Officer (NRMO) Alan Robins said local forest management company Timberlands Pacific is taking on the initiative to control this potential threat.

“We’ve identified Sallow wattle spreading along roadsides from Penola to Casterton,” Alan said.

“This area of concern has seen infestations spread into pine plantations, which can impede harvesting and maintenance operations.

“With this in mind, we consulted with Timberlands Forester Kim Thomas to organise their summer fire crew to undertake control along a 4km section near the roadside.”

Sallow wattle can be identified by its smooth bark, thin and narrow leaves, and flowers from winter to spring with yellow spike-like clusters. Early control is performed by cutting trunks and stems low to the ground using chainsaws, or hand tools.

The Timberlands crew completed control work earlier this year with great results, and were able to remove pine wildings at the same time.

These control measures have allowed other non-invasive native species to regenerate in areas where Sallow wattle could have become dominant and outcompeting others.

“We encourage industry to get involved in pest control for the benefit of their business, and for the improvement of our natural resources,” Alan said.

“The future plan is to do further work to combat Sallow wattle along the northern side of Casterton Road adjoining Timberlands plantations in 2019.”

For more information and advice on pest plants and how to control them, contact your local NRMO.

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