Plans to spray weeds as part of an aerial weeds control programme in the Snowy Mountains region has been postponed due to concerns about the use of herbicide during frost by environmentalists.
The herbicide, that contains both glyphosate and flupropanate, was to be applied to areas where infestations of the weed Serrated Tussock are spreading.
The New South Wales Environmental Protection Authority raised concerns over the council’s use of the chemical during frost as it does not follow the label requirements. The Snowy Mountains is subjected to frost for the vast part of the year and so the council is seeking the advice from the New South Wales Minister for Primary Industries, Mr Niall Blair in an attempt to reinstate the programme.
Controlling Serrated Tussock can be difficult, especially when large infestations are left to spread without intervention. The Snowy River Shire Councillor Mr Cahill indicated that the spread of the weed is mainly due to the amount of hobby farms in the region where outbreaks have remained untreated and undetected leading to dense infestations.
Serrated Tussock is a long living perennial grass that is capable of producing 100,000 seeds per annum and is a weed of national significance in Australia. It poses a threat to biodiversity and productivity of pastures due to its invasive nature. With its high fibre and low protein content, Serrated Tussock has little nutritional value to livestock and due to the high level of seeds it can produce each year can overtake vast areas of agricultural land, seriously affecting productivity.
Controlling Serrated Tussock can be a difficult and costly exercise and involves an integrated weed management plan to effectively contain it. Serrated Tussock can be chipped out with a hoe or sprayed – spot spraying is often preferable as it is generally faster and easier.
The use of 12 volt spot sprayers or engine driven spot sprayers are often utilized as an effective way of controlling Serrated Tussock as they have the ability to spray large areas of infestation. It is essential that these infestations are bought under control to safeguard against the level of infestation that is currently been identified in the Snowy Mountains region.
For more information on the best equipment to control outbreaks of Serrated Tussock, call 1800 011 000 to speak to a knowledgeable member of the Rapid Spray team or click here to view the full range of sprayers for effective weed management.