War on weeds in Wellington  

Landholders in the Wellington Shire are being urged to wage war on weeds this spring through a new program being overseen by the Wellington Shire Council through funding by the Federal Government.  

 The project will be delivered by the Maffra and Districts Landcare Network, a body that has a great track record of working with farmers around environmental management. 

 The Wellington Weeds and Pest Animal Control Project will allow eligible landholders access to funds for both on-ground works as well as opportunities to develop new skills in weed and pest management. 

  “This is a great opportunity for landholders to get a helping hand to both manage weeds and pest animals now, and also look at how they might get ahead of weed problems in the future,” said Maffra and Districts Landcare Network chair, Geoff Gooch. 

 “The Federal Government estimates that weeds cost Australian agriculture $1.5 billion in weed control activities and a further $2.5 billion in lost agricultural production. 

 “While those figures are national, we hope to put a significant local dent in the problem here in the Wellington Shire,” added Geoff. “Managing weeds and pest animals such as rabbits and foxes will help farm profitability and the local economy, and it will also help protect native plants and animals”. 

 “The project will consist of three main components. There will be a grants program to support on-ground works on private property.  An educational component looking at weed and pest animal management programs and chemical user training (Australian Chemical User Program) for interested landholders.” 

 Developing integrated pest management plans for properties that move away from the cycle of short-term approaches to managing weeds and moves towards longer term strategies of management will be a focus of the project. 

 “Many landholders can get into a cycle of ‘spray weed, wait two years, then spray weed again,” said Geoff.  “By landholders working together more effective larger scale integrated weed control can be achieved.  

 “What we’d like to promote is ways of managing paddocks and whole farms so that weeds become replaced and controlled by competition from productive pasture speciesrequiring less and less specific intervention by farmers.” 

 Councillor Alan Hall, Mayor of the Wellington Shire says he hopes farmers can take advantage of this project and commended the Federal Government on the initiative. 

 “Agriculture is central to our local economy so anything we can do to assist in lifting productivity on-farm will have flow on effects to many other businesses and sectors within the Wellington Shire. 

 “We’re delighted that the Federal Government has made this funding available and equally delighted to be working with the team at Maffra and Districts Landcare to putthe funds to work.” 

 Applications are now being accepted at Maffra and Districts Landcare website at mdln.com.au or via contacting Nicky 0484 002 296. 

This project is funded by the Communities Combating Pest and Weed Impacts During Drought Program – Biosecurity Management Pests and Weeds – Round 2 – an Australian Government initiative. 

 

Boxthorn - one of the weeds being targeted in the War on Weeds initiative