Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Young farmer proactive in combating pest plant



December 22, 2011

MEDIA STATEMENT

Young farmer proactive in combating pest plant

A local North Canterbury farmer has had to make changes to his farming practices to manage an invasion of the pest plant Chilean Needle Grass.

Carl Forrester has been farming since he was 16 years old and has spent the past three years running 500 hectares of leased land on Leader Road East. The 24-year-old sheep and beef farmer contacted Environment Canterbury Biosecurity after finding a grass he suspected was Chilean Needle Grass on his property.

“I noticed a patch of grass I hadn’t seen before. I grabbed a handful of it and noticed that the seeds looked similar to ones I had seen in a pamphlet about pest plants.

“I immediately contacted Environment Canterbury, who came out and confirmed it was Chilean Needle Grass,” said Mr Forrester.

Environment Canterbury Principal Biosecurity Advisor Laurence Smith found that Chilean Needle Grass was reasonably well established over around one third of the property. After recent summer growth it was easily visible.

“The extent of the infestation is such that it must have been growing on the property for some time,” he said.

On the advice of Environment Canterbury, Mr Forrester immediately de-stocked all areas where Chilean Needle Grass was found. Large patches of Chilean Needle Grass on the de-stocked land have also been sprayed with glyphosate to prepare for burning.

Burning of the grass will take place soon, so the seed (which will not have been killed by spraying) will be destroyed. A resource consent to burn vegetation on hill and high country is currently being obtained from Environment Canterbury, and liaison with the Rural Fire Authority is being undertaken to ensure that the burn is safe and controlled.

There is also an intention to spray the entire affected area with the herbicide Taskforce, once approval for aerial spraying is obtained. Marlborough District Council, with support from Environment Canterbury has applied to the Environmental Protection Agency for aerial registration of Taskforce.

Mr Forrester encourages other farmers to be similarly proactive if they find potentially invasive plants on their property.

“My advice to farmers is to get along to a field day, have a look at what the grass looks like, and keep an eye out on your own property.

“The sooner you get onto it the better. The support offered by local farmers and landowners has been great and the help and advice from Environment Canterbury’s Biosecurity team has been awesome,” he said.

Laurence Smith encourages people to give Environment Canterbury’s Biosecurity Team a call if they suspect Chilean Needle Grass is on their property.

“It is important to contact Environment Canterbury immediately if you think there is a problem. It is vital you do not move stock or machinery that could be affected as this can easily spread the seeds to other parts of the farm.

“The best thing is to get onto it quickly and use the resources available. We are here to help and provide support to ensure the plant pest can be effectively managed and contained,” he said.

Chilean Needle Grass is a tufted perennial plan which grows to one metre tall in the absence of grazing. Its leaves are bright green and harsh to touch, and it is unpalatable to stock. The flowers have a purple tinge and ripen into hard, sharp seeds with twisting tails. The seed tails can penetrate farm animals’ skin, which is damaging to their hide. This also helps the grass to disperse itself and reseed into the soil.

Chilean Needle Grass is a major problem for dry hill country farmers in Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay It was first found in Canterbury at Spotswood, a North Canterbury property, in 2008.

Two more sites in Omihi and Lemington Valley in the Hurunui District have been identified in the past week and the extent of the incursion in these properties is still being determined by Environment Canterbury Biosecurity.

If you suspect Chilean Needle Grass is on your property please contact Environment Canterbury on 03 314 8014.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Politics Of Using The Word “Fascist”

“Fascist” is one of those labels with the ability to capsize any debate. Call your opponents “fascists” – or “agitators” or “terrorists” or “scum” and you’ve taken the option of mutual respect and compromise off the table. Interesting then to see the ( paywalled) Washington Post seriously debating with itself yesterday over whether… Hmm, is it now finally time to bring out the f-word in connection with the presidency of Donald J. Trump, and with his enablers in the Republican Party..? More>>

 


RNZ: Covid-19 rules and restrictions on businesses to be lifted under alert level 1


Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says there will still be strict controls on the border, but all current rules and restrictions on businesses and services will be "essentially lifted" under alert level 1.
She said the lower alert level would also put an end to restrictions for hospitality businesses, and gatherings - including funerals and tangihanga - of any size could take place..... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Twitter Wars, And The Muller Muddles

Whatever the failings of our own politicians, spare a kind thought for the majority of Americans who did not vote for Donald Trump. Sure, it was depressing this week to watch Todd Muller clinging for dear life to his talking points on Q&A, ... More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: Statement On The Death Of George Floyd

“Today and every day we stand in solidarity with George Floyd’s family, friends and community who feel pain and fear about his untimely death at the hands of Minneapolis police”, said Green Party Co-leader and Māori Development spokesperson Marama ... More>>

ALSO:


Government: Freshwater Package Backed By Comprehensive Economic Analysis

Decisions on the Action for Healthy Waterways package are supported by comprehensive environmental and economic impact analysis by leading New Zealand research institutes, universities, and private sector firms. More>>

ALSO:

National: "Todd Muller Announces Shape Of Next Government"

National Party Leader Todd Muller has announced the line-up of the next Government. “New Zealand is facing perhaps the toughest time that almost anyone alive can remember. “We are borrowing tens of billions of dollars to get us through this crisis. There ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Day Of Reckoning

Congratulations. You are one of the 55 members of the National caucus being called together tomorrow to choose who will lead you to either (a) catastrophic or (b) honourable defeat on September 19, thereby saving some (but not all) of the jobs currently on the line. Good luck. Your decision process starts NOW... More>>

ALSO:


Budget 2020: Jobs Budget To Get Economy Moving Again

Investments to both save and create jobs in Budget 2020 mean unemployment can be back to pre COVID-19 levels within two years and could see the economy growing again as early as next year. More>>

ALSO:

Government: Five New Super Hercules To Join Air Force Fleet

The Coalition Government has confirmed five Lockheed Martin C-130J-30 Super Hercules transport aircraft will be purchased to replace the existing fleet, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. More>>

ALSO:

Government: Queen's Birthday Honours List 2020

The New Zealand Order of Merit The Queen has been pleased, on the occasion of the celebration of Her Majesty's Birthday, to make the following appointments to The New Zealand Order of Merit: DNZM To be Dames Companion of the said Order: Distinguished ... More>>

Government: Support For Arts And Music Sector Recovery

A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: New Zealand Joins Global Search For COVID-19 Vaccine

Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods, and Health Minister David Clark today announced a COVID-19 vaccine strategy, which will enable New Zealand scientists to contribute to global research efforts ... More>>

ALSO:

The Dig: Steady State Economics: We’ve Got Some (systems) Thinking To Do

In this time of impending economic and ecological crises, we urgently need to aim for a sustainable or ‘steady state’ economy. In order to get there, we will need to adopt a ‘systems-thinking’ outlook taking into account the interconnections of our complex world.

In short, we’ve got some systems thinking to do... More>>

ALSO:

Election 2020: Parties Get Into gear

The Green Party is pleased to reveal its candidate list for the upcoming election. With a mix of familiar faces and fresh new talent, this exceptional group of candidates are ready to lead the Greens back into Government. Using the most democratic list ... More>>

ALSO:

Insight Into Regenerative Agriculture In New Zealand

There is a fast growing movement in New Zealand that has been happening out in paddocks, fields, gardens and hill country across the nation. It is a movement that holds the promise to reshape our productive land use industries towards systems that work with the natural environment to regenerate the land. The movement is that of regenerative agriculture. More>>

ALSO:

Covid-19: Tracer App Released To Support Contact Tracing

The Ministry of Health has today formally released the NZ COVID Tracer app to support contact tracing in New Zealand. Kiwis who download the app will create a digital diary of the places they visit by scanning QR codes displayed at the entrances to ... More>>

ALSO:


Govt: Deep Concern At Hong Kong National Security Legislation
Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong.... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels