Managing Biosecurity Risks On Earthquake Affected Properties

Managing Biosecurity Risks On Earthquake Affected Properties

This is a three-year project led by the NZ Landcare Trust and funded by the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Farming Fund. It runs from 1 September 2017 to 30 June 2020 and aims to control plant biosecurity risks that have been exacerbated by the bare land exposed by the November 2016 earthquake. The project focuses on reducing the plants’ further spread and adapting management options for earthquake-affected properties in the Marlborough, Kaikoura and Hurunui districts.

One of the plants is the extremely invasive and problematic Chilean Needle Grass (CNG), which is a serious threat to the economic viability of a number of primary industries in Marlborough. The Trust is working with the Marlborough Chilean Needle Grass Action Group, whose goal is to adapt effective and economical tools to control CNG infestations for use on earthquake-affected properties including farms, vineyards, lifestyle blocks and public land. The other plant threats being targeted are nassella tussock and wilding pines.

The project supports local groups and will work collaboratively with landowners, industry groups, councils and research bodies. It will survey farmers and vineyard owners about their land and its biosecurity risks, provide them with strategies to reduce the risks, and run pilot trials to establish best-practice management strategies for different weed species. The findings will also be shared publicly via field days and case studies.

Managing Biosecurity Risks On Earthquake Affected Properties

Templates are available as below:

SFF-Funded Biocontrol for Nassella Tussock Project"

Marlborough farmers and councils in EQ the affected areas are also supporting the SFF funded “Biocontrol for nassella tussock project” run by Seona Casonata at Landcare Research and other researchers at AgResearch, and in Australia and Argentina.

They hope to work with farmers to find a biocontrol fungi that will work against nassella tussock. NZ properties are currently being surveyed for biocontrol fungi. And also the project will be looking at possibly bringing in
agents from Australia and Argentina. The researchers have made some good progress in finding agents within New Zealand.

Farmers can assist with this by keeping an eye out for diseased nassella tussocks and then making contact if you find any. Please see the document below called “Looking for pathogens April 2020” to know what to look for.

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