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Feedback required on national silverleaf nightshade plan

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GRDC Weed Alert - Feedback required on draft five-year national strategic plan for Silverleaf Nightshade.
Read on for further information:
One of Australia's most serious perennial weeds - which significantly reduces crop and pasture production - is the focus of a five-year plan just released for public comment. 
The hardy perennial now infests more than 350,000ha of crops and pastures in SA, NSW and Victoria.
Earlier this year silverleaf nightshade was added to the Weeds of National Significance (WoNS) in recognition of its status as a serious threat across mainland temperate cropping areas.
Biosecurity SA’s Dr John Heap, who was recently appointed National Coordinator for silverleaf nightshade, has drafted a management plan in consultation with a range of people across Australia and is now seeking public feedback on the plan.
"Most new infestations of silverleaf nightshade are started from seed eaten by sheep, but it can be spread by other means, including dragged root fragments," Dr Heap said.
"Our best chance is to prevent it from spreading to clean areas and to seek and destroy small outlier infestations. Currently there are no known economic methods to destroy the perennial plant once it's established in large patches, so it's vitally important we avoid this situation."
Dr Heap said comments on the draft five-year national strategic plan for silverleaf nightshade would be accepted until 2 November.
"This is a great chance to have your say and contribute to the final plan." he said. "It's important to have a coordinated, national approach to management of silverleaf nightshade so that we make the most efficient use of valuable resources."
The plan examines various aspects, including understanding current and potential distribution, reducing spread, finding and treating new outbreaks and managing large established infestations.
Both plan and a feedback form are at: www.weeds.org.au/WoNS/silverleafnightshade
Send your feedback by Friday 2nd November 2012.
Once all public comments have been considered, a revised plan will be submitted to the Federal Government for approval.
For further information about the plan and submission methods please contact Michaela Heinson, PIRSA on (08) 8303 9521, or email: michaela.heinson@sa.gov.au

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