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Weed species richness, density and relative abundance on farms in the subtropical grain region of Australia

Rew, L.J and Medd, R.W. and Van de Ven, R. and Gavin, J.J. and Robinson, G.R. and Tuitee, M. and Barnes, J. and Walker, S. (2005) Weed species richness, density and relative abundance on farms in the subtropical grain region of Australia. Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 45 (6). pp. 711-723.

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Article Link(s): http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/EA03273

Publisher URL: http://www.publish.csiro.au/

Abstract

Weed management is one of the most important economic and agronomic issues facing farmers in Australia's grain regions. Weed species occurrence and abundance was monitored between 1997 and 2000 on 46 paddocks (sites) across 18 commercial farms located in the Northern Grain Region. The sites generally fell within 4 disjunct regions, from south to north: Liverpool Plains, Moree, Goondiwindi and Kingaroy. While high species richness was found (139 species or species groups), only 8 species occurred in all 4 regions and many (56 species) only occurred at 1 site or region. No species were observed at every site but 7 species (Sonchus spp., Avena spp., Conyza spp., Echinochloa spp., Convolvulus erubescens, Phalaris spp. and Lactuca serriola) were recorded on more than 70% of sites. The average number of species observed within crops after treatment and before harvest was less than 13. Species richness tended to be higher in winter pulse crops, cotton and in fallows, but overall was similar at the different sampling seasons (summer v. winter). Separate species assemblages associated with the Goondiwindi and Kingaroy regions were identified by correspondence analysis but these appeared to form no logical functional group. The species richness and density was generally low, demonstrating that farmers are managing weed populations effectively in both summer and winter cropping phases. Despite the apparent adoption of conservation tillage, an increase in opportunity cropping and the diversity of crops grown (13) there was no obvious effect of management practices on weed species richness or relative abundance. Avena spp. and Sonchus spp. were 2 of the most dominant weeds, particularly in central and southern latitudes of the region; Amaranthus spp. and Raphanus raphanistrum were the most abundant species in the northern part of the region. The ubiquity of these and other species shows that continued vigilance is required to suppress weeds as a management issue.

Item Type:Article
Corporate Creators:Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI), Agri-Science, Crop and Food Science, Plant Science
Business groups:Agri-Science, Crop and Food Science
Additional Information:Reproduced with permission from © CSIRO Publishing. Access to published version may be available via Publisher’s website.
Keywords:Relative abundance; species richness; weed; Australasia; Australia; Eastern Hemisphere; world; Amaranthus; Avena; Convolvulus; Convolvulus erubescens; Conyza; Echinochloa; Gossypium hirsutum; Lactuca serriola; Phalaris; Raphanus raphanistrum; Raphanus sativus; Sonchus.
Subjects:Plant culture > Field crops > Grain. Cereals
Plant pests and diseases > Weeds, parasitic plants etc
Deposited On:05 Mar 2009 05:19
Last Modified:26 Oct 2011 00:14

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