Pest Plants & Animals

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Ararat Rural City Council, together with the Department of Primary Industries, Catchment Management Authorities, Landcare Groups and individual land owners, is developing a Pest Plant and Animal Program that will tackle priority weeds and pest animals on roadsides.

The responsibility for roadside weeds and pest animals has not been completely resolved and in the interim State Government has provided some limited funding.  Landowners are required to undertake control works on their own properties and can assist by working with neighbours.

Pest plants - weeds

What is a weed?

Weeds are plants that invade and thrive in environments in which they do not naturally occur.

'Environmental Weeds' threaten natural ecosystems, can invade native plant communities and compete with them for space, nutrients and sunlight, resulting in reduction of plant diversity and loss of habitat for native animals.

They're often seemingly attractive, innocuous, common garden plants - they can be native to Australia or exotic.

Council's Weed Identification Booklet can help you better identify these Environmental Weeds and explains the various methods of control (copies of the booklet are also available from Council offices).

Declared Noxious Weeds

By law, landholders are required to control or eradicate noxious weeds, as proclaimed under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994.

For more information see the Department of Primary Industries' Invasive Plants Glossary.

Ongoing weed control

Weed control should form part of ongoing property management plan.
For more information contact Department of Primary Industries or Council on 5355 0200.

Rabbits

Rabbits are one of Victoria’s most destructive and problematic pest animals.
They cause environmental damage by:

  • destroying indigenous vegetation;
  • competing with native animals for food and habitat; and
  • causing erosion, soil loss, and creek and river bank destabilisation.

Rabbits inflict significant economic cost on the agricultural and horticultural sector and reduce amenity value of parks and gardens by feeding on plants and digging up turf.  They are also a common problem in the home vegetable garden.

Effective rabbit control requires a variety of measures, not just one or two. There is no quick fix solution and landholders need to be persistent.

Legal Responsibility

All landowners are legally required to take measures to control rabbits.  State legislation (Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994) requires landowners to control declared Pest Plants and Animals, including rabbits, on their land.  Control is defined as taking action to minimise their impact and to prevent their spread.  Council is working with individual property owner and Landcare Groups to meet its obligations as well.