Preventing weed spread to protect the Limestone Coast
The Limestone Coast Landscape Board (LC Landscape Board) are encouraging contractors to thoroughly clean their vehicles and machinery to help prevent the spread of weeds and soil borne pathogens across the region.
Across the Limestone Coast, weeds can have a significant impact to primary production, the natural environment and our townships and gardens. Across Australia, the agricultural cost of weeds is estimated to be $4.8 billion per year, or $13 million a day.
Senior Landscape Officer, Nicole McGuiness of the Limestone Coast Landscape Board said that once established, weeds can be costly and difficult to control.
“Prevention is always better than cure and if we can stop weeds spread and protect areas of the Limestone Coast from new incursions, we are not only protecting the landscape we are also assisting primary producers protect their bottom line.”
“We’re particularly concerned that weeds such as false caper, African lovegrass, Bathurst burr and variegated thistle could be spread to new areas of the Limestone Coast as a result of equipment and machinery not being cleaned properly before being moved to the next site, or best practice weed hygiene procedure not being followed,” she said.
The LC Landscape Board have developed a ‘Best practice weed hygiene’ online training tool to support those working on roadsides, in earthmoving and on properties of the impact of declared weeds to the region.
The training tool assists individuals in understanding of best practice weed hygiene and their legal responsibilities and obligations when it comes to the movement of declared weeds.
“We will be asking businesses and industry groups in the region, such as councils, machinery operators and contractors, to include the training tool in their staff training and inductions,” said Ms. McGuiness.
To support the roll out of the online tool to businesses, the LC Landscape Board are reminding the community of the importance of cleaning vehicles and equipment and invite them to also utilise the best practice training tool which takes less than 30 minutes to complete. For more information about identifying or managing weeds, contact your local Landscape Officer.