Information about dieback in the City of Melville.
What is Dieback?
Phytophthora Dieback is an introduced water mould that lives in soil and plant tissue. It has a deadly impact on many native species, including Eucalyptus, Banksia and Casuarina. It kills susceptible vegetation by causing root rot and stopping the transfer of water and nutrients up the stem of the plant. Dieback is easily spread by the movement of wet infested soil and plant material to a new area, usually by people and vehicles.
The City of Melville is actively engaged in managing the impact and spread of Dieback. Native vegetation is treated using phosphite, a biodegradable, non-toxic fungicide that boosts a plants defence and enables it to survive being infected by Phytophthora pathogens. Phosphite does not eradicate the disease, it only suppresses the symptoms.
Dieback Quarantine on Attadale Foreshore
In recent months a number of Casuarina and Melaleuca trees on the Attadale foreshore have experienced a sudden decline in health or have died.
A tree specialist was engaged to determine the cause, and extensive testing has identified three different species of soil-borne Phytophthora pathogens, more commonly known as dieback, are likely to be the cause. These pathogens live and are spread in infested soil and plant material.
The trees are being treated in an effort to save them and measures have been taken to quarantine the area to help contain the spread of the pathogens. The area will also be revegetated with sedges, which have been tested and show no signs of being susceptible to dieback.
A fence has been erected covering a one hectare area of bushland and parkland along Burke Drive, Attadale. Due to the permanent nature of dieback and no available cure, the fence will remain indefinitely.
This is not expected to impact public use as access to the foreshore, pathway network and dog exercise areas are not affected.
Boot cleaning stations are being installed at both entrances to the intact bushland to prevent dieback spreading outside of the quarantine area.
The City of Melville is asking residents to help manage the problem by respecting fencing and avoiding the cordoned off area, as well as using the boot cleaning stations provided.
The City of Melville will be working with the Department of Environment and Conservation and the Dieback Working Group to manage and monitor the issue.
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