Kempsey Council wins awards for weed management plan

Kempsey Shire Council

A Tropical Soda Apple control program has helped Kempsey Shire Council take home both the Division and Overall awards at the recent Local Government ‘Excellence in the Environment Awards’!

The Tropical Soda Apple Control and Landholder Resilience Program was designed following the devastating 2019 bushfires, aiming to bring the community together and eliminate infestations of Tropical Soda Apple.

Tropical Soda Apple is a priority weed for the Kempsey area, and its range was accelerated by first the fires, which stripped the land of competing vegetation, and then the floods which helped to spread the fruit and seeds.

The program used two main methods to control the spread of the weed: landholder training events, and physical weed removal by local weed control contractors.

The aim of the training events was to bring the community together and provide free training in some relevant best practice farming techniques, including photography, operating a quad bike, operating a side-by-side, off-road 4WD, machinery hygiene, SMART chemical application, and chainsaw training.

Alongside the training component, weed contractors were busy removing the noxious plant from along Five Day Creek and the Macleay River, covering more than 400km over some very challenging terrain.

Special congratulations go to Jack Dickey, Environmental Health Manager, and Greg Egan, Weeds Officer, for their hard work on this project:

Image: Greg Egan (L), Weeds Officer, receiving the Excellence in the Environment Awards

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