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New drive to tackle roadside weeds

Over 300 kilometres of road verges in the Snowy River catchment have been treated for serrated tussock and African lovegrass in the past six months through the joint efforts of South East Local Land Services and Cooma-Monaro, Bombala and Snowy River Shire Councils.

The project has seen a doubling of investment in weed control for priority roads across the three Shires during this period.

South East Local Land Services project manager, Leon Miners said the spread of these invasive grassy weeds are key threats to native vegetation and grasslands in the region.

"Serrated tussock and African lovegrass affect pastures and the quality of grazing lands and can lead to productivity and profitability losses for rural enterprises," Mr Miners said.

"Roads are a major area for the spread of these weeds and controlling outbreaks along road verges can be a resourcing challenge for local councils."

Bombala Shire Council's Noxious Weeds Officer, Colin Groves said the ability to follow up on weed control works is essential to keep effective control in play.

"The collaborative effort made by all agencies achieves far better results because the programs are run at the same time," Mr Groves said.

Cooma-Monaro Shire Council's Noxious Weeds Manager, Brett Jones said the additional investment made available through this project was very timely, given optimal seasonal conditions for weed growth over this period.

"The funding enabled Council to conduct a second grassy weed control program for the season in a high priority area," Mr Jones said.

"It couldn't have been better timed given the conditions."

Snowy River Shire Council Vegetation Management Officer, Richard Hocking said the more resources there are to tackle widespread weeds, especially along roadsides the better.

South East Local Land Services also treated ten key Travelling Stock Reserves (TSRs) for these grassy weeds and other woody weeds such as blackberry and St John's wort.

Mr Miners said this achieved an additional 300 hectares of weed control across the catchment and will support surrounding land managers by reducing weed spread to these Crown reserves.

"Many TSRs retain high biodiversity values due to limited grazing over the years," Mr Miners said.

"Strategic weed control in these areas will help to protect biodiversity and habitat for endangered species such as the legless lizard."

The project works were jointly funded by the Cooma-Monaro, Bombala and Snowy River Shire Councils with support from South East Local Land Services through Australian Government funding.

For more information please contact Leon Miners, South East Local Land Services, Cooma on (02) 6452 1455.

ENDS

Media contact:

Debra Thompson
Senior Land Services Officer (Communications)
02 4224 9707
Debra.Thompson@lls.nsw.gov.au