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Pest Plants and Animals

Pest plants (weeds) and animals can pose a serious threat to primary production and biodiversity in Victoria. Many species have the potential to reduce agricultural productivity, displace native species, threaten social values and contribute significantly to land and water degradation. It is the responsibility of all landowners to control noxious weeds and declared feral animals. Weeds are estimated to cost Australian agriculture around $4 billion annually due to yield losses and product contamination.

Weed Identification and control

The correct identification of weed species is critical when selecting the best control methods for successful long-term eradication. There is a proven need to combine, or integrate, a number of control methods to get successful long term results.

Under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994 (CaLP Act) certain plants are declared as noxious weeds in Victoria. These plants cause environmental or economic harm or have the potential to cause such harm. They can also present risks to human health. The Act prohibits the movement and sale of noxious weeds of all categories anywhere in the State, and covers weed seeds occurring as contaminants in seed lots, plant products or on vehicles, machinery or animals. All land owners have legal obligations regarding the management of declared noxious weeds and pest animals on their land.

The Department of Primary Industries ( has a list of invasive weed species and appropriate weed control measures for your land. The University of New England have also produced a manual for Weed Detection and Control on Small Farms ( that may also be of interest.

Environmental weeds can have serious impacts by threatening indigenous biodiversity wherever they occur. Some native plants can even become environmental weeds when allowed to escape from gardens into an area where they would not naturally occur. Environmental weeds can degrade the habitat values for indigenous plants and animals, and contribute to species decline or even extinction.

Environmental weeds can outcompete locally occurring indigenous plants because they have no natural predators or pests present to control their growth or spread through the environment. They tend to spread rapidly into new areas and/or across large distances by a range of different vectors such as birds carrying seeds, vehicles and equipment carrying seeds and vegetative material, or through the transport of dirt from one site to another.

Brochures of a selection of the more common noxious and environmental weeds developed by Glenelg Shire, Southwest Environment Alliance (SEA) and Landcare for the Shire are below.

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