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SCIENCE AND EDUCATION

National herbicide resistance survey in weeds to begin

Herbicide-resistant weeds are being cast into the spotlight, thanks to a Charles Sturt University-led national survey.

Backed by the Grains Research and Development Corporation, the survey is encouraging farmers from Australian grain production regions to have their say.

This is the first time the entire Australian grain-growing region will be surveyed for herbicide resistance in the one growing season using the same methodology.

The survey will provide important information about the prevalence of herbicide resistance that will guide growers and the weed control industry on strategies for weed management.

Charles Sturt researcher Dr John Broster from the Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation said this large national survey would determine the resistance status of major cropping weeds to key herbicides.

“The extent of resistance across the entire Australian cropping region has previously been identified through surveys of the individual regions, however this is the first time a national survey will be conducted in the same growing season using standardised methods for site selection, sample collection and resistance evaluation,” Dr Broster said.

“For this survey, the project team members will be contacting agronomists and growers in order to locate sampling sites.

“This means we can provide growers with the herbicide resistance screening results for weed populations collected from their paddocks.”

From October to December 2020 the team will sample more than 2700 winter crop paddocks, and another 450 summer crop paddocks will be surveyed in northern NSW and Queensland in 2021.

Samples of the major and some emerging weed species for each of the GRDC regions will be collected when those weeds are found in a paddock.

Farmers who want to be involved should contact the project leader for their region: Charles Sturt University’s John Broster, email jbroster@csu.edu.au and Michael Walsh by email at m.j.walsh@sydney.edu.au

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