Cats claw Tingid Bug breeding greenhouse
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Bio-control programs
  • Last updated:
  • 04 Jan 2022

Biological control is the use of a plants natural enemies to prevent its spread. These agents can include plant pathogens and seed or leaf predators. A thorough approval process has been established in Australia which involves host specific testing. The bio-control agents are assessed to meet requirements of the Quarantine Act 1908 and the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act).

Current bio-control programs being used in the Sunshine Coast 


The Sunshine coast Bio-control program for Cat’s claw creeper is working to protect the Sunshine coast environment and biodiversity from Cat’s claw creeper by helping to control the spread in natural areas

Target species

Cats claw creeper vine (Dolichandra unguis-cati)

Schedule

Ongoing

Location

Council managed land, riparian areas and natural areas on private properties in strategic locations in Nambour, Woombye, North Arm, Maroochy River, Kenilworth and Flaxton 

Protection methods

Sunshine Coast Council officers have been releasing Cats Claw creeper vine bio-control across the region and are monitoring the progress of these sites and different environmental influences. A leaf-mining Jewel Beetle (Hylaeogena jureceki) and a Tingid bug (Carvalhotingis visenda) have been released to control Cats claw creeper vine. Both feed on the leaves of the vine. The bio-control agents slow the spread of Cats claw creeper vine but do not completely eliminate so follow up with other control methods needs to be undertaken. 

 

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The Sunshine Coast Lantana Bio-control program is working to protect Sunshine coast environment and agriculture from Lantana by helping to control its spread

Target Species

Lantana (Lantana camara)

Schedule

Ongoing

Location

Council managed land, riparian areas and natural areas on private properties in strategic locations in Landsborough, Reeseville, Maroochydore, Caloundra and Mapleton 

Protection Methods

Sunshine Coast Council officers have released Lantana bio-control in a couple of areas and are monitoring the progress of these sites and different environmental influences. 
A gall mite (Aceria lantanae), one of a number of different bio-control agents available for lantana has been released. The mite causes abnormal growth in lantana flowers which reduces the amount of seeds produced. 

The Sunshine coast Bio-control program for Madeira vine is working to protect the Sunshine coast environment and biodiversity by helping to control the spread of Madeira vine in natural areas 

Target species

Madeira vine (Andredera cordifolia)

Schedule

Ongoing

Location

Mooloolah valley, Mapleton, Kenilworth, Peachester, Mary River (various locations), Obi Obi river, North Arm, Maroochy River, Nambour 

Protection methods

Sunshine Coast Council officers have been releasing Madeira vine bio-control across the region and are monitoring the progress of these sites and different environmental influences. The bio-control agent for Madeira vine is a beetle (Plectonycha correntina) which eats holes through Madeira Vine leaves. The bio-control slows the spread of Madeira vine but does not completely get rid of the vine so follow up with other control methods needs to be undertaken. 

 

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The Sunshine coast Bio-control program for Salvinia is working to protect the Sunshine coast environment, water storage and recreational areas from Salvinia by helping to control its spread.

Target species

Salvinia (Salvinia molesta

Schedule

2010-Ongoing

Location

Council managed land, riparian areas and natural areas on private properties in strategic locations in Nambour, Woombye, North Arm, Maroochy River, Kenilworth, Flaxton, Mooloolah valley, Doonan, Witta, Belli park, Chevallum, Yandina, Palmwoods, Mudjimba, Caloundra, Maleny, Glenview 

Protection Methods

Sunshine Coast Council officers have been releasing Salvinia bio-control across the region. Council has monitored the progress of these sites and different environmental influences. The bio-control agent for Salvinia is a weevil which eats the leaves and slows down its spread. In ideal conditions it can almost eliminate all the Salvinia. Usually a small amount will remain which will need to be manually removed or sprayed. 

 

 

Salvinia weevil damage