New Map of Wheel Cactus in Victoria

 

The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group has recently completed a project aimed at increasing awareness and knowledge about Wheel Cactus. One of the valuable outcomes from this project is the construction a new map showing the distribution of Wheel Cactus infestations in Victoria.

The ever enthusiastic, young, local environmentalist Max Schlachter was employed as our project officer, and has collated 345 recorded sites of Wheel Cactus within our state. These sites covered 105 different localities around Victoria, mostly in a band from the northwest to Melbourne, but including some surprising outliers elsewhere. The majority of the sites (69%) were new records, and the rest were existing records taken from current government maps, such as the Victorian Biodiversity Atlas.

Some alarming realisations from this mapping exercise were that within some of these localities, for example ‘Maldon’, there are too many infestations to record, plus there are very likely many infestations that we did not capture. Thankyou Max for your wonderful work, and thanks also to the Norman Wettenhall Foundation for funding the project.

Want to know more about Wheel Cactus and how to deal with it, then please come to our next Community Field Day on Sunday 30th July, starting at 10:30am. We’ll meet just inside the entrance to the Lakeshore Olive farm in Greenhill Bridge Rd., a few kms south of Maldon, off Whitlocks Rd. These events are family friendly, but we ask that all children be accompanied by a parent at all times.

And don’t forget, if you have any old injector guns that are no longer working, please bring them back to us and we’ll swap then for working models. If you can’t make it to our next field day, call or text Jan on 0400 973 528 and she’ll organise a drop-off or pick-up.

New Farm Fence Signs

Cactus Warriors Ian and Lee hanging one of the new fence signs

You should soon spot some new eye-catching signs when driving around the Maldon district. These have been created by the ‘cactus warriors’ thanks to funding from the Norman Wettenhall Foundation. We’re now distributing the signs to local Landcare groups for members to hang on their farm fences at highly visible locations. Hopefully these signs will act as a frequent reminder to landholders of the environmental and economic threat of Wheel Cactus, and to treat all plants they find on their property, especially before they mature and produce fruit and seeds.

If you need any advice or help to deal with Wheel Cactus plants, then please come to our next Community Field Day on Sunday 25th June, starting at 10:30am. We’ll meet at the shelter in the Nuggetty Bushland Reserve on Nuggetty School Rd., which runs between Nuggetty Rd. and Maldon-Shelbourne Rd., just a few kms north of Maldon. These events are family friendly, but we ask that all children be accompanied by a parent at all times.

And don’t forget, if you have any old injector guns that are no longer working, please bring them back to us and we’ll swap then for working models. If you can’t make it to our next field day, call or text Jan on 0400 973 528 and she’ll organise a drop-off or pick-up.

 

Injector kit Recall

Thanks to ongoing funding from Mount Alexander Shire Council, the Tarrangower Cactus Control Group has been able to provide free loans of injector kits to many local landholders over the past 10 years. We believe this has been a strong incentive to control Wheel Cactus on private properties and to be a valuable contributor to our community-based war on this noxious weed.

We know these guns become clogged up and also how fiddly this equipment is to clean, and fear there are lots of injecting kits out there now sitting idle in sheds. Our “injector fairies” love fiddling with the bits and are happy to clean and fix them, so anyone with a non-functioning injector, please bring it back to us and we’ll swap it for a working model. You can bring the old injectors to our next field day or if you can’t make it there, either call or text ‘fairy Jan’ on 0400 973 528 and she’ll organise a drop-off or pick-up.

Our next Community Field Day is on Sunday 28th May, starting at 10:30am. Come and join us for a morning in the fresh air and learn how best to destroy Wheel Cactus. The location this month is at the end of Cook’s Lane, a few kms north of Maldon, just after the turn off to Baringhup. To get there, follow Bridgewater Road out of Maldon; the route will be well signposted. The morning’s activities end with a delicious BBQ lunch and friendly chat. If you have any queries please contact us info@cactuswarriors.org

TCCG Field Day May 2017