PROTECTING PLANTS: Envirolink co-ordinator Rhonda Truscott and Landcare president Alby Wooler are ready for Weedbusters week.
PROTECTING PLANTS: Envirolink co-ordinator Rhonda Truscott and Landcare president Alby Wooler are ready for Weedbusters week. Trish Bowman

A week to weed out bad guys from garden, waterways and bush

IT'S the time of year when plants and animals spring into growth, so look out for new weeds which may invade your property, waterways and bushland.

Weedbusters Week is held from September 1-7 as an annual awareness program to increase understanding of the impact of weeds which degrade agricultural land and natural environments.

Weeds take over pastures and native plants so habitat for native animals is lost or reduced; they may be toxic to animals and other plants; they choke creeks and waterways; cover and strangle trees and may increase the fire hazard.

The Capricorn Coast Landcare Group and Livingstone Shire Council will provide residents with the opportunity during Weedbusters Week to find out about problem plants and methods to manage them.

The best prevention is early detection so get to know the weeds in your area and on your property.

Next week you can bring in photos or a bagged sample of a plant for identification to the Weedbusters display in Keppel Bay Plaza from Monday to Friday, 9am-4pm, and receive a free native plant.

The display has been supported by Capricorn Coast Landcare and the council for many years and this showcase in Keppel Bay Plaza will allow people to see some of the worst weeds in the shire and animals that have the potential to be major new pests such as the fish species tilapia and the Indian myna bird.

Threatened Species Day on September 7 is a chance to focus on the native plants and animals that are becoming endangered through the impacts of changing land use and feral invaders.

The first week in September is also National Landcare Week celebrating the Australian volunteer network that supports people to better manage the land, water and biodiversity we all rely on.

Drop into Keppel Bay Plaza to check out the display and you could win a prize. "Woody the Weed" mascot will visit the plaza to spread the word about weed invasion.

Key pointers to help stop the spread of weeds are: maintain healthy vegetation cover, replace weed species with natives, start control early before generations of weed seed is set, always follow-up your control work, and use seasonal conditions and plant growth cycles to get the best return on your efforts.

Contact Livingstone Shire Council's land protection team on 4939 9965 or Capricorn Coast Landcare Envirolink Centre on 4939 1002 for further information.