Weed management at Barmah on target

Monday 18 March, 2013
More than 500 ha of weeds, including willow and blackberry, have been treated in Barmah National Park.

More than 500 ha of weeds, including willow and blackberry, have been treated in Barmah National Park.

Goulburn Broken (CMA) Strategic River Health Manager Wayne Tennant said the result was double the target of 250ha set three years ago.

"To exceed the target is particularly pleasing given we have faced plenty of challenges - such as unseasonal flooding that prevented access – since the weed management plan was developed," Mr Tennant said

He said the aim of the weed control project was to protect the ecological health of Barmah, which is listed as an internationally significant Ramsar site.

"Controlling weeds is vitally important to maintaining and protecting the diversity of the Moira Grass Plains and a number of rare and threatened species such as River Swamp Wallaby-grass, Mueller Daisy and Western Waterstarwort," he said.

The project is a partnership between the Goulburn Broken CMA, Parks Victoria and Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation (YYNAC), funded by Federal Government's Caring for Our Country initiative.

Parks Victoria is delivering the on-ground elements of the project through YYNAC's Woka Walla Business Unit, with support from local contractors. Parks Victoria also delivers a broader annual pest plant and animals program in the national park to complement the Caring For Our Country project.

Parks Victoria Ranger Team Leader Roger Young said weed treatment at Barmah National Park was focused on plants that were listed as high-risk weeds for that environment.

"We have treated many areas in and around Barmah National Park for blackberry, willow, briar rose and arrowhead as well as many other woody and herbaceous weed species," Mr Young said.

"Recurrent flooding compounded the work for the team as wetter conditions increased rates of germination, survival, dispersal and growth of pest plants so it's good to see we are exceeding our targets."

GBCMA staff members have established monitoring sites to assess the effectiveness of the works. These findings will form the basis of a final report to the Federal Government.

Crew assessing site conditions prior to commencement of works.  Photo:  Parks Victoria