Landcare SJ Project Update March 2019
SUCCESSFUL State NRM Small Community Stewardship Grant ‘Getting rid of water hyacinth at Keralup Farm, Serpentine River’
By Kristy Gregory, Project Management Officer Landcare SJ
This project will continue the efforts to eradicate the highly invasive weed water hyacinth from the Serpentine River, by focusing on the Keralup Farm which includes Lake Amarillo. This is the southern end of a water hyacinth infestation that is effectively being controlled to the north by the Water Corporation, and part of a previous project funded by the State NRM Program's 2015 Community Action Grants. Keralup Farm is managed by the Department of Communities and has been a very challenging site to tackle the infestation due to the diffuse wetland environment and highly invasive nature of water hyacinth. Further weed control is being carried out by the Department, and this project will assist with on-ground follow-up methods previously not undertaken, to improve the effectiveness of the spraying efforts.
Beautiful Lake Amarillo, one of the natural assets in need of protection from water hyacinth (the bulrush is the native species of Typha)
A recent site visit was carried out at Keralup Farm involving representatives from Landcare SJ, the Peel-Harvey Catchment Council, Envirapest, Department of Communities, and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation. During the visit, a northern outlier of water hyacinth was identified and will be included in the next round of control, to prevent its movement downstream and risk reinfesting areas that are presently being worked on.
Also discussed were the methods currently being implemented by Envirapest, including installation of physical barriers to chorale the weed to better control it. Project partnerships were also discussed, involving value-adding to activities. For example, the use of work forces to carry out ground surveillance and manual removal to prevent single occurrences of water hyacinth that can quickly result in re-infestations.
This project will also facilitate an aerial surveillance exercise to continue the monitoring begun in the previous project; and twice more bring the stakeholders together for the purpose of discussion and collaboration.