Sporobolus is a genus of grasses that are emerging threats for the Cape York Region. There are four declared Rat´s tail grasses that crews are currently controlling and monitoring, all four grasses are very similar in appearance, if you need help with identification drop us in a sample.To access documentation on collecting and preserving plant specimens got to our Useful links Tab and Click on ‘Collecting and preserving plant specimens’
American rat’s tail grass (Sporobolus jacquemontii)
American rat’s tail grass is very similar in appearance to giant rat’s tail grass and even the experts have difficulty differentiating the two. Both are clumping grasses that can invade pastures and replace more productive types of grass. American rat’s tail grass is a declared class 2 pest plant under Queensland legislation.
Giant Parramatta grass (Sporobolus fertilis)
Giant Parramatta grass looks very similar to another weedy sporobolus grass, giant rat’s tail grass. Sporobolus grasses are aggressive, can reduce pasture productivity and cause significant degradation of natural areas. Giant Parramatta grass is a Class 2 declared pest plant under Queensland legislation.
Giant rat’s tail grass (Sporobolus pyramidalis and S. natalensis)
Giant rat’s tail grass and other weedy sporobolus grasses are aggressive grasses that can reduce pasture productivity and cause significant degradation of natural areas. Giant rat’s tail grass was originally introduced around the early 1960s in contaminated pasture seed. Giant rat’s tail grass is a Class 2 declared pest plant under Queensland legislation.
Parramatta grass (Sporobolus africanus)
Native to South Africa, Parramatta grass is similar in appearance to giant rat’s tail grass and experts have difficulty differentiating the two. Both are clumping grasses that can invade pastures and replace more productive types of grass. Parramatta grass is a declared Class 2 pest plant under Queensland legislation.
Read more in the next article.
Rubber vine (Cryptostegia grandiflora)
Rubber vine is spreading on land beyond the containment line within CYP and our program is designed to survey and control infestations north and south of this line. An initial aerial survey of the area from the Kendal River Catchment right across the Cape including the Lakefield National Park access road up to the Port Stewart access road was conducted. This survey has given the group the ability to target strategic infestations north of the containment line. Crews in partnership with landholders have undertaken control works on strategic outcrops of rubber vine north of the containment line.
(Hymenachne amplexicaulis) Hymenachne has a limited distribution within CYP, located mostly within the Cook Shire with an isolated outbreak found within the NPA. CYWAFAP have been controlling this weed in conjunction with Far North Queensland Regional Organisation of Councils and the funding has been provided through the Defeating the Weed Menace Program. There are several issues in the control of this weed within the region, mostly related to safety due to estuarine crocodiles being present in the waterways. Control methods used included hand pulling and chemical applications from small vessels and an Argo all-terrain vehicle.
Ophiomyia camarae is a herringbone leaf-mining fly that contributes to reducing the spread of lantana. The fly favours lantana growing in sheltered areas where humidity levels are high. Damaged Lantana plants can become defoliated, causing plants to become stunted and produce fewer flowers and seeds. Over the past 6 years CYWAFAP have worked with the Tropical Weeds Research team in Charters Towers on releasing and monitoring the bio control at several different sites around cooktown.
Parkinsonia survey and control
(Parkinsonia aculeata) Parkinsonia on Cape York Peninsula is currently confined to the west coast. The infestations are relatively small and contained, but the potential exists for Parkinsonia to spread throughout the entire marine plains area on the west coast of Cape York. Historically, work has been undertaken on the Pormpuraaw floodplains treating mature seed bearing trees. Follow-up treatment on seedlings is undertaken by the rangers group at Pormpuraaw to ensure that these areas are not allowed to develop mature trees, treatment is again being undertaken to remove new seedlings. This year Parkinsonia has been controlled on the last large scale infestation on Aurukun south lands. A survey undertaken using both aerial and ground survey methods and mapping was carried out using moving map technology through PDA’s. Once surveyed and mapped, training and control work was undertaken.
Cape York Sustainable Futures Inc.
Cape York Sustainable Futures Inc. (CYSF) previously Cape York Peninsula Development Association Inc (CYPDA Inc) was formed in 1987 to provide an independent forum to promote the development of Cape York Peninsula, an area covering 137,000 sq. kms. in one of Australia’s most remote regions. Our group is apolitical, cross-sectional and considered a pioneer of community driven representation.
It provides an open forum for debate and is the only organisation in the Peninsula to which everyone can belong and where everyone can have their say, with members coming from a cross section of the community including Indigenous people, pastoralists, small business owners, tourism operators, agricultural, community organisations, conservationists and local government.
CYSF advocates for enhanced quality of life through the most appropriate means for Peninsula residents and lobbies governments to enable legislative change in order to achieve this goal for the Cape York community.
We focus on building a cohesive empowered community with a vibrant diverse economy, strong social infrastructure that will help create a wealthy community and one where effective management of the environment provides for now and the future generations.
Pond Apple Survey and Control
Pond apple has spread throughout the east coast of CYP and on to some of the islands located within Torres Strait. The group has undertaken several programs for the management of this weed within our defined area. A survey encompassing the entire east coast of the Cape was completed in June 2008. This survey was undertaken with an R44 helicopter and covered approximately 900 kilometres of coast line. This survey has given the group the ability to target strategic infestations along the coastline.
Roadside spraying program
Road side priority weeds
CYWAFAP implements an effective roadside spraying program, the roadside spraying program is great chance for our pest officers to look for new emerging weeds. A high number of pest plants are transferred through vehicle movements, please make sure you encourage everyone to use the wash down at Lakeland and or other designated wash down areas. Gamba grass, Sicklepod/