An eradication campaign to remove the noxious weed Mimosa pigra from Lake Proserpine is beginning to show results with a report showing more than 3600 plants have been removed this year.
The latest results were welcomed by Queensland Mimosa Pigra Stakeholder Group members, which met recently to discuss the success and future direction of their eradication campaign.
The stakeholder group includes representatives from SunWater, Department of Natural Resources and Mines, Whitsunday Shire Council, Agforce, Canegrowers, Mackay/Whitsunday National Resources Management Group, Whitsunday River Integrated Catchment Authority and local landholders.
SunWater Business Manager Tom Wallwork said the results showed that working together to stop the invasive waterweed was a success and he looked forward to further plant eradication.
“Mimosa pigra has proven to be a very invasive weed, but I’m pleased the stakeholder group’s determined efforts have been successful in combating its spread and hope this is a sign we are starting to turn back the tide on this introduced pest,” Mr Wallwork said.
While happy with the success of the grass roots level actions, Mr Wallwork said spraying plants, destroying seedpods and setting up public exclusion zones within the lake was only part of the overall eradication plan.
“When the stakeholder group was first established its was agreed that total eradication would require not only manual removal but also longer term public education about how this weed spreads,” he said.
“During the past two years we have erected signs and wash down bays at strategic points along the lake’s foreshores and endeavoured to educate users about how they can play an active role in helping fight this weed.”
“While we are pleased some have taken this on board, we are still very concerned there are some people who persist in grounding and launching boats at unauthorised locations where they may pick up seeds and spread them further.”
“Signage at boat ramps clearly explain what people can and can’t do and also where they can fish and launch boats. I encourage everyone to bear this in mind when making use of the facilities and lake areas that have been made available to them,” he said.
Continued non-compliance with the conditions of entry to Peter Faust Dam will leave the Queensland Mimosa Pigra Stakeholder Group with no option other than to investigate the potential prosecution those members of the public who refuse to comply with the conditions of entry. – QMPSGReads: 1101