The National Management Group (NMG) for Four Tropical Weeds met on 1 June 2011 to consider a response plan for the 2011-2014 National Four Tropical Weeds Eradication Program. The group also considered progress under the National Siam Weed Eradication Program.
Four Tropical Weeds
The National Four Tropical Weeds Eradication Program targets six species of four known weeds: Koster’s curse (Clidemia hirta), Limnocharis or Yellow bur-head (Limnocharis flava), Miconia (Miconia calvescens), Miconia nervosa, Miconia racemosa and Mikania vine (Mikania micrantha).
Following the discovery of the weeds in Queensland in 2003, a nationally cost-shared eradication program was implemented, led by the Queensland Government. Eradication of the weeds has been deemed nationally significant due to their potential to impact on business, ecosystem services and environmental amenities, which include impacts on the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area.
At the meeting, the NMG noted the advice of the Consultative Committee on Exotic Plant Incursions that eradication for all six species remained technically feasible and that there had been significant progress to date. The NMG agreed the program should continue and endorsed funding until 2014, subject to jurisdictional budget processes and annual review by the Consultative Committee.
The eradication of Siam weed has also been deemed nationally significant due to its potential to impact on business and the environment. A nationally cost-shared eradication program, led by the Queensland Government, has been in place since the discovery of the weed in 1994.
The NMG noted the program faced significant challenges and agreed that an independent review of the program should be undertaken to inform decisions on the technical feasibility of eradication and future management of the weed. The review will be conducted in August-September 2011.
The NMG is comprised of the chief executive officers of the national and state/territory departments of agriculture and primary industries across Australia, representatives of the Commonwealth Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities and Plant Health Australia. The NMG is chaired by the Secretary of the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.