Agriculture Victoria landholder survey on weeds and pest animals now open
Posted on 2 June, 2020 by Ivan
There would be few, if any, landholders across Victoria that have not experienced the tiresome battle with the diverse range of invasive plants and animals. In the Mount Alexander region, many of us are aware of the vast areas of Gorse, Blackberry, Cape and English Broom, Thistles, Wheel Cactus, Bridal Creeper and other weeds, as well as invasive animals such as rabbits, foxes, and increasingly, deer.
Details of a new survey from Agriculture Victoria are outlined below. The survey will give the Victoria government important data to make strategic planning decisions and allocate funding.
Agriculture Victoria is seeking support from private landholders, including farmers, to help combat pests and weeds which cost Victoria more than $1 billion a year in management and control programs. Landholders are invited to take part in a state-wide survey to better understand the social and behavioural factors that influence pest and weed management.
Agriculture Victoria is the lead agency in the delivery of programs to combat established invasive species which is underpinned by the $4.3 million Weeds and Rabbits Project funded by the Commonwealth government. ‘We’ve been working closely with our key stakeholders and community members to better understand the barriers people face with implementing weed and rabbit management practices,’ said Agriculture Victoria Acting Program Manager Heidi Kleinert said. Ms Kleinert said community participation was crucial to understanding this space.
‘Rabbits and weeds are a problem for all landholders, including farmers and public land managers, and we need to tackle this together,’ she said.
‘We are asking land managers to share with us how they manage weeds and rabbits on their property. The survey results will tell us what is working well at the moment, but also where improvements can be made.’
North East landholder and community representative Neil Devanny said a major issue for farmers in meeting their obligations to control pest animals and plants came down to setting and managing priorities.
‘We all need to harvest our crops, shear our sheep, market our livestock and so this work must happen. It is easy to drive past a rabbit burrow or weed and say I will do that tomorrow,’ he said. ‘An effective pest program needs to remind and prompt landholders to take action, especially on a collective basis.’
‘Land manager input will assist in developing collective ownership of the programs to benefit the community as a whole and support the good work that is already being done.’
The survey opened Monday 25 May and closes Wednesday 24 June 2020.
To complete the survey – click here
For more information contact Nicole Cairns (phone 0436 675 030)
The data community provide will be made anonymous and you will be able to read key findings on the Weeds and Rabbits Project website when available.