Complete a Gorse Survey and WIN

GorseControlled

The Victorian Gorse Taskforce (VGT) uses government investment to establish and support community-led projects, which aim to eradicate gorse where possible across Victoria.

The purpose of this project is to gain an understanding of the types of support that communities need from VGT to manage gorse in their local areas. RM Consulting Group have been engaged by VGT to run the survey, which seeks information about work done on your property to control gorse

The results from this survey will help us identify opportunities where we can provide better support to you or your networks.

The survey should not take any more than 5 to 10 minutes to complete and you can go in the draw to win 1 of 3 Woolworths vouchers. The survey can be accessed via this link:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VGTsurvey

Thank you for participating.

 

UPDATE: Pest Plant Education & Compliance Program

Council’s annual Blackberry Education and Compliance program is now in full swing. Earlier this summer, properties were sent a courtesy letter advising the commencement of the program and the requirement to control this noxious weed. For most land managers, this notice simply serves as a timely reminder to monitor and follow-up areas previously treated. Notices to comply will shortly be sent out to those properties yet to commence control.

This year, many land managers have chosen to sign-up to a voluntary 3-year property management plan offered by our local Whittlesea & Surrounds Blackberry Action Group (W&SBAG) and their project officer on the ground, Chris. You’ll be seeing the farmgate signs going up all over the place no doubt (see photos below). If you haven’t signed up yet and you’re within the target areas of Kinglake West, Humevale and Whittlesea, you can contact Chris by email to schedule a site visit: ugln.projects@ugln.net

 

 

The annual Gorse program finished up recently and was a huge success. Only 35 properties were sent advisory notices, down from 66 properties in 2016. Of these, just 13 were issued notices to comply. The figures show that more and more property owners are recognising the benefits of integrated Gorse control, particularly from both a farm productivity and asset protection perspective. The image below shows very effective Gorse control on Commercial land in Wollert. While this land owner still has a way to go, it’s an impressive start and shows that the program seeks to engage commercial operators (as well as public land managers) to support the work private landowners are undertaking.

For further information, contact Councils Environment Protection Officer on 9217-2147.

Gorse Control

 

 

 

Don’t Miss Out: Get your Tickets today

This Saturday 25 November: Weed Control Networking Day

Hosted by the cities of Hume and Whittlesea and Mitchell Shire Council, the line-up includes presentations from:

  • Victorian Serrated Tussock Working Party
  • Victorian Gorse Taskforce
  • Dabyminga Blackberry Taskforce
  • Tim Bloomfield: Pest Plant and Pest Animal Interactions
  • Pat Connor: Weed Seed Spread and Precautions (including a vehicle hygiene demonstration over lunch)
  • Whittlesea and Surrounds Blackberry Action Group
  • Melbourne Water on Landholder Assistance Programs

The event will be facilitated by Terry Hubbard of the Strath Creek Landcare Group, Upper Goulburn, Victorian and National Landcare Networks and 2017 recipient of the Joan Kirner Landcare Award.

There’ll be a FREE sausage sizzle of gourmet Aroona sausages (100% grass-fed, preservative free beef) cooked by the Wandong Heathcote Junction Community Group.

So don’t miss out! Grab your ticket today using the following link:

www.weedday.eventbrite.com.au

 

It’s Tussock Termination Time!

STplants

The state government is currently running their annual Serrated Tussock compliance program. Approximately 60 properties within the municipality are a part of the program and will shortly receive notices from the regional biosecurity officer. For larger properties with significant infestations, a site inspection followed by control is required to be undertaken by mid-August. For smaller properties, particularly in the residential areas of Whittlesea-township, notices will be sent out in August reminding landowners that it’s time to do their work.

Councils Land Management Team will be assisting the regional biosecurity officer in efforts to engage landowners and to register reports received from community members. Our annual roadside management program for Serrated Tussock will also be undertaken between July and August. If you’d like to report Serrated Tussock you’ve noticed on a property or the roadside, contact Katherine Whittaker on 9217-2147 or Katherine.whittaker@whittlesea.vic.gov.au

 

Farm Chemical Users Course: Register now!

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Want to gain industry standard training in farm chemical use?

The City of Whittlesea is subsidising the cost  for rural residents to update or become accredited farm chemical users. The course and permit usually costs around $250 but is available here, for just $50.

In this two-day course join a network of local rural landowners and learn about:

  • Storage and handling
  • Pest identification
  • Modes of action
  • Label interpretation
  • Issues associated with chemical use
  • Formulation types
  • Weed and pest control application
  • Animal health
  • Transport and disposal
  • Preparation and clean up procedures
  • Recording procedures

By the completion of this course you will have the required Industry Quality Assurance Programs Training, necessary when applying for the Victorian Agriculture Chemical Users Permit (an ACUP is required for users of Schedule 7 and other Restricted Use Chemical Products).

Places are limited, so make sure to register via Eventbrite today!

https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/farm-chemical-users-course-17th-24-june-tickets-34946130818

Terms & Conditions: This course is only available to City of Whittlesea residents. Attendees may be asked to provide proof of residency upon entry.

Full catering provided

For more information please contact Katherine Whittaker on (03) 9217 2147 or email Katherine.Whittaker@whittlesea.vic.gov.au

Roadside Woody Weed Control

Cameron Rise Cootamundra1

Council is currently undertaking roadside woody weed control along environmentally significant roadsides this month. Target roads are:

  • Cameron Rise, Beveridge
  • Holts Rd, Whittlesea
  • Bruces Creek Rd, Whittlesea
  • Wildwood Rd, Whittlesea
  • Glenburnie Rd, Whittlesea
  • Humevale Rd, Humevale
  • Gingles Rd, Humevale
  • Scrubby Creek Rd, Humevale
  • Jacks Creek Rd, Humevale
  • Coombs Rd, Kinglake West

Target weeds include Pine (small trees), Sweet Pittosporum, Non-indigenous Wattles (see image above of Cootamundra Wattle on Cameron Rise), Cotoneaster, Hawthorn, Broom, Prunus.

If you know of any additional roadsides that have woody weed issues, feel free to contact Mark Williams on 9217-2471 or mark.williams@whittlesea.vic.gov.au.

SERRATED TUSSOCK TRAVELLING IN FODDER ACROSS THE STATE

The Victorian Serrated Tussock Working Party (VSTWP) is advising landowners to ensure fodder and hay purchased this summer and autumn is free of noxious weeds and in particular, Serrated Tussock (Nassella trichotoma).

THE VSTWP advises landowners to:

  • purchase stockfeed from reputable outlets and from areas outside of the serrated tussock core infestations around the fringes of northern and western Melbourne
  • feed out hay in designated feed-out areas, where any weed seed germination can be easily monitored
  • undertake machinery / vehicle hygiene practises

See below link to the Media Release from the Victorian Serrated Tussock Working Party (VSTWP).

VSTWP Media Release March 2017

Introducing The Whittlesea Blackberry Action Group

Did you know that we now have our very own local Blackberry Action Group? With the support of the Victorian Blackberry Taskforce, this group will help our community achieve similar successes in Blackberry control to those being had by multiple community Blackberry Action Groups across the state.

Our new Blackberry Action Group will soon be busy putting together an action plan for the target areas in Humevale, Kinglake West and around Toorourrong Reservoir. The project facilitator will then engage property owners in those target areas, working to enlist as many volunteers as possible for the program. At the same time, Council will continue to support Blackberry control on private land through the pest plant education and compliance program. The formation of a Blackberry Action Group has also importantly created opportunities for greater advocacy for Blackberry control on public landholdings in those areas.

If you’d like further information or are interested in joining this exciting new community group, contact Councils Environment Protection Officer on 9217-2147.