Residents from Townsville and its surrounds have shown a keen interest in weed identification and eradication, attending workshops held across the region.

More than 30 residents attended workshops held in Majors Creek and on Magnetic Island, hosted by NQ Dry Tropics as part of the Healthy Habitats Project through support from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

Local weed experts shared knowledge on how to identify problem weeds and control techniques that can be applied to help prevent spreading.  Residents were also encouraged to bring their weeds to the workshop for identification.

NQ Dry Tropics Project Officer JJ Walker said the workshops were an effective way to engage with the local community so attendees could share information.

“It’s a good way to engage with residents to see what’s giving them trouble in their backyards and paddocks, and to be able to share information on how to best manage weeds,” Ms Walker said.

“Weeds can reduce recreational amenity, affect sites of biodiversity significance, and have an enormous impact on agriculture and the environment.

“Correct identification is an important first step to make sure that new weeds can be eradicated before they become established.  

“It’s also important to ensure that control methods used are effective and appropriate.

“Information on what the species looks like, its distribution, habitat, reproduction and dispersal, growth, impacts, control methods, origin, and status on national weed lists is important information to be able to make informed decisions,” she said.

Participants also took part in a Weed ID quiz where they they tested their knowledge on plant identification in order to win pre-mixed herbicide as a prize.

Magnetic Island residents learn the answers to their Weed ID quiz.

“This project boosted community capacity which is great, and NQ Dry Tropics looks forward to holding similar events in the future,” Ms Walker said.

Main photo: Magnetic Island residents Isobel Coleman, Su Mijic, Heidi Daniel, Jim Thompson, Meredyth Woodward, Renata Mitterlechner, Audrey Ledbroo, Charlie McColl and George Hurst examining backyard weeds with NQ Dry Tropics Project Officer Jaymie Rains.