UQ researcher Kusinara Wijayabandara seeks community help in tackling the invasive fireweed
UQ researcher Kusinara Wijayabandara seeks community help in tackling the invasive fireweed
17 January 2020

Fireweed is one of eastern Australia’s worst invasive species, and scientists are asking landholders for on-the-ground information about where it is growing and how they deal with it.

This information from members of the public could help combat the introduced, pest species, said PhD candidate Kusinara Wijayabandara, from UQ’s School of Agriculture and Food Sciences.

“This dreaded plant -- Senecio madagascariensis Poir – is bad news for landholders,” she said.

“Fireweed contains toxins known as pyrrolizidine alkaloids, which leads to liver toxicity when eaten by certain grazing animals, including cattle and horses.

“Its physical effects are awful for the animals and it’s a financial burden for farmers.”

Ms Wijayabandara said fireweed reduced livestock production and cost an estimated $2.5 million a year.

Fireweed contains toxins that leads to liver toxicity when eaten by cattle and horses.Fireweed was introduced from Madagascar a century ago to New South Wales’ Hunter Valley, and has since then spread north along the coast.

“Infestations have been found in Queensland near Caboolture, Cooroy, Belli Park, Maleny, Yandina, Pelican Waters and Gympie,” Ms Wijayabandara said.

“It has been reported as far north as Rockhampton and the Atherton Tablelands.”

To help combat the invasive pest, Ms Wijayabandara is collaborating with UQ’s Professor Steve Adkins and Dr Shane Campbell and the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries’ principal weed scientist, Joe Vitelli.

“We are building on past research, looking at current management practices and hoping to develop more effective, integrated fireweed management strategies,” Ms Wijayabandara said.

“I’m studying fireweed’s requirements for seed germination and determining the longevity of seed in the soil.

“We will also set up experiments to examine the efficacy of selected herbicides against the plants and their seeds.

“Landholders with fireweed on their properties are providing us with an incredible amount of information, but we still need more data.

“I’m asking Australians – particularly in south-east Queensland and northern NSW, who have this weed on their land to contact us please.

“They will be helping to fight fireweed and to protect animals and farmers.”

The survey takes about 15 minutes to complete.

Ms Wijayabandara said information collected through the survey would provide a better understanding of fireweed’s distribution and impacts, and would give insight on control options landholders are currently using.

The Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries is providing operational support for the project.

Contact: Kusinara Wijayabandara, [email protected], +61 421 509 051.

Media: Dominic Jarvis, [email protected], +61 413 334 924.


ag软件挂机打公式自动投注 pk10牛牛 股票指数期货是什么意思 云南时时彩 什么股票配资软件好用 赢翻网配资 91快牛配资 浙江十一选五 股票配资平台 日海智能股票股吧 股米网 搜搜配资 北单 喜乐彩 唐山股票配资 台州股票配资 福建36选7