Recommended NZ | Guide to Money | Gimme: Competitions - Giveaways

Good ‘moving day’ planning key to preventing pest plant spread - Council

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Farmers are being urged to do their bit to protect farms from damaging pest plants by ensuring machinery, vehicles and equipment have been cleaned ahead of Moving Day.

Planning is also necessary when it comes to preventing effluent entering waterways and keeping roads clear and safe for road users in the region, says Waikato Regional Council.

Moving Day occurs in the week leading up to and immediately following 1 June each year. It involves the mass transporting of cows and machinery around the country’s roads as farm contractors relocate themselves and their stock in time for the new season.

"Through good on farm biosecurity practices, farmers and contractors can make a massive difference to preventing the spread of pest plants and weeds," said regional council biosecurity pest plants team leader, Darion Embling.

"Unclean machinery is a confirmed pathway for the spread of infestations, such as velvetleaf and alligator weed, between some farms in our region. That makes machinery hygiene especially important with Moving Day coming up and the mass movement of stock, machines and vehicles between farms."

Mr Embling said machinery hygiene must be practiced any time a machine is moved between properties.

"Any form of plant or soil contamination has a real potential for harbouring pests or weeds. Machinery should be cleaned so no visible soil or plant matter remains."

Ideally, machinery wash-down should occur on the property prior to movement, containing any problems at the source. Alternatively, machinery may be cleaned in a built-for-purpose wash-down facility, but care should be taken to ensure there is not a risk of pest spread during transport to that facility.

"Pest plants such as alligator weed and velvetleaf can have a massive impact on the productivity and profitability of farm businesses, so farmers and contractors need to be extra vigilant when moving between properties," Mr Embling said.

All articles and comments on Voxy.co.nz have been submitted by our community of users. Please notify us if you believe an item on this site breaches our community guidelines.