Top plant pests are gazetted

Top plant pests are gazetted

Tropical Soda Apple and Cockspur Coral Tree are among more than 30 plants which have been gazetted as noxious weeds across the North Coast.

The NSW government recently gazetted Weed Control Order 30. This order adds new species to the list of noxious weeds and changes the classification of some existing noxious weed species.

North Coast Weeds Advisory Committee (NCWAC) secretary Reece Luxton said the gazettal would allow local weed-control authorities to step up action to control these highly invasive species.

Mr Luxton said the new weed-control order was put together after consultation with local control authorities, stakeholders and the public from around NSW.

“These changes will help to ensure that control authorities and land owners are taking the most important actions to minimise the negative impacts of invasive weeds on the economy, environment and communities,” Mr Luxton said.

“I encourage everyone to spend a few moments becoming familiar with the new lists for their area.  The NCWAC, Look Learn Act, and the NSW Department of Primary Industries’ websites are all great sources of information on these weeds.”

Noxious weeds in NSW are divided into five classes, according to the nature of the threat and the control strategies that can be used against them:

  • Classes 1 and 2 include species which have not yet invaded NSW. Any occurrences of these plants must be reported to the local control authority, and land owners are required to eradicate and keep their land free of them. For class 1 these conditions apply statewide, for class 2 they apply in specified local-government areas (LGAs).
  • Class 3 lists weeds which have established to an extent, but whose area and impact can be reduced. They must be fully and continuously destroyed in certain LGAs, and some are also prohibited from sale or distribution.
  • Class 4 weeds are those which have established, but for which the aim is to minimise the negative impacts. They must be controlled in certain LGAs according to the measures specified in the weed control order.
  • The aim of Class 5 is to prevent any further spread of the listed species  These weeds are notifiable across the State.

New additions to Class 1 include Bridal Veil Creeper, Frogbit/Spongeplant, Tropical Soda Apple and Boneseed.

Across the North Coast region, Class 2 now also includes Asparagus Fern, Bellyache Bush, Cecropia species, Climbing Aasparagus, Grey Sallow, Paper Mulberry, Long-leaf Willow Primrose (except in Nambucca where it is Class 1), Ming Asparagus Fern and Sicklethorn.

Class 3 now includes Mahonia, Montpellier Broom/Cape broom, White Blackberry/Mysore Raspberry and Giant Devil’s Fig for all LGAs on the North Coast.

Cat’s Claw Creeper has been added to Class 3 in Bellingen, Coffs Harbour and Nambucca LGAs, and to Class 4 in Clarence Valley and Far North Coast Weeds areas.

Cockspur Coral Tree has been added to Class 3, except in the LGAs covered by Far North Coast Weeds, where it is a Class 4.

Bitou Bush is now Class 3 in the Tweed LGA, but remains Class 4 in the rest of the region.

New additions to Class 4 in all North Coast LGAs include other Asparagus species, Blackberry, Black Willow (previously Class 3 in Bellingen and Clarence Valley LGAs), Flax-leaf Broom and Giant Reed/Elephant Grass.

Madeira Vine is now a Class 4 weed in the Clarence Valley LGA.

Mother-of-millions has been added to Class 4 across the region, except in Clarence Valley LGA, where it remains a Class 3.

Chinese Celtis and East Indian Hygrophila are now in Class 4 in LGAs covered by Far North Coast Weeds, but remain in Class 3 for other North Coast LGAs.

Information about these and other weeds, and their control methods, can be found under the Weeds tab on this website, or at the NSW Department of Primary Industries’ website, http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/agriculture/pests-weeds/weeds/definition .

The complete list of noxious weeds in all classes in Weed Control Order 30 can be found at http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/410059/weed-control-order.pdf.

Weed of National Significance found in region

Weed of National Significance found in region

pond-apple-fruitA new Class 1 plant, Pond Apple (Annona glabra), has been detected on the Far North Coast of NSW.

It is regarded as one of the worst weeds in Australia due to its invasiveness, potential for spread, economic impact and environmental impact.

Before this discovery, there were no known infestations of Pond Apple in NSW.

The weed has already had devastating effects on the wet tropic bioregion of Far North Queensland where it has invaded more than 2000 hectares of environmentally valuable mangrove forest.

Pond Apple can form dense thickets which can exclude most (or all) native plant species.  Its ability to grow in flooded areas and to tolerate salt water has enabled it to spread through much of northern Queensland’s wet tropics area.  The weed continues to threaten extensive wetland areas, including mangrove communities.

From an economic perspective, Pond Apple also threatens the agricultural and pastoral sectors of Australia by growing in and along creeks, fence lines and farm drains on the north-eastern coast.

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The weed was originally introduced into Australia as grafting stock for the closely related custard apple.  It has previously been discovered growing as far south as Brisbane.

As Pond Apple has not been discovered in the region before, it is important to manage any infestations before it can have an impact on our region.

If you suspect you have found a Pond Apple infestation, please report it using our Report A Weed form or via www.looklearnact.com, contact your local council or call 02 6623 3866.

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