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Impact of control strategies on bellyache bush (Jatropha gossypiifolia L.) mortality, seedling recruitment, population dynamics, pasture yield and cost analysis

Bebawi, F.F., Vitelli, J.S., Campbell, S.D. and Mayer, R.J. (2011) Impact of control strategies on bellyache bush (Jatropha gossypiifolia L.) mortality, seedling recruitment, population dynamics, pasture yield and cost analysis. The Rangeland Journal, 33 (3). pp. 277-286.

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Article Link(s): http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/RJ10038

Organisation URL: http://deedi.qld.gov.au/
Publisher URL: http://www.austrangesoc.com.au/site/
Publisher URL: http://www.publish.csiro.au/home.htm


Bellyache bush (Jatropha gossypiifolia L.) is an invasive weed that has the potential to greatly reduce biodiversity and pasture productivity in northern Australia’s rangelands. This paper reports an approach to develop best practice options for controlling medium to dense infestations of bellyache bush using combinations of control methods. The efficacy of five single treatments including foliar spraying, slashing, stick raking, burning and do nothing (control) were compared against 15 combinations of these treatments over 4 successive years. Treatments were evaluated using several attributes, including plant mortality, changes in population demographics, seedling recruitment, pasture yield and cost of treatment.

Foliar spraying once each year for 4 years proved the most cost-effective control strategy, with no bellyache bush plants recorded at the end of the study. Single applications of slashing, stick raking and to a lesser extent burning, when followed up with foliar spraying also led to significantly reduced densities of bellyache bush and changed the population from a growing one to a declining one. Total experimental cost estimates over 4 successive years for treatments where burning, stick raking, foliar spraying, and slashing were followed with foliar spraying were AU$408, AU$584, AU$802 and AU$789 ha–1, respectively. Maximum pasture yield of 5.4 t ha–1 occurred with repeated foliar spraying. This study recommends that treatment combinations using either foliar spraying alone or as a follow up with slashing, stick raking or burning are best practice options following consideration of the level of control, changes in pasture yield and cost effectiveness.

Item Type:Article
Corporate Creators:Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI), Biosecurity Queensland
Business groups:Biosecurity Queensland
Additional Information:© Australian Rangeland Society.
Keywords:Bellyache bush; Jatropha gossypiifolia; burning; foliar spraying; slashing; stick raking; treatment combinations.
Subjects:Science > Invasive Species > Plants > Integrated weed control
Science > Invasive Species > Plants > Effect of herbicides
Plant pests and diseases > Weeds, parasitic plants etc
Deposited On:15 Nov 2011 23:09
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:48

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