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Successful containment and eradication of Phytophthora cinnamomi at a management level from diverse natural ecosystems in Western Australia

Dunne, C., Hartley, R., Dunstan, W., Scott, P., Paap, T. and Hardy, G. (2012) Successful containment and eradication of Phytophthora cinnamomi at a management level from diverse natural ecosystems in Western Australia. In: 6th International Union of Forest Research Organisations,IUFRO Working Party 7-02-09, 9 - 16 September, Córdoba, Spain.


Here we demonstrate that management scale containment and eradication can be achieved for Phytophthora dieback infestations in three different native plant communities in Western Australia. The communities include: (1) a Kwongan vegetation type on a soil varying from sandy to exposed rocky subsurface to a clay above a rock subsurface, (2) a Proteaceous heathland on a deep sand profile, and (3) a Kwongan Banksia woodland on a deep sand over a sandy loam‐clay. All of these communities are highly impacted by P. cinnamomi resulting in substantial loss of biodiversity assets. The successful approach taken involved the following tasks: risk assessment of the project goals and proposed techniques, implementation of hygiene plans, extensive and intensive soil and plant sampling and in situ baiting to accurately map the occurrence of the pathogen, detailed hydrological characterisation using remote sensing techniques, 2D hydraulic modelling, development of hydrological engineering options, catchment modelling, installation of fences to reduce animal vectoring, herbicide applications to remove living host support for the pathogen, phosphite foliar sprays, fumigation with metham sodium and ongoing monitoring of the sites to demonstrate the success of the approach taken. Prevention of further spread through these high priority natural ecosystems is now of high priority. This project has involved partnerships between government and non‐government agencies, industry, researchers and community groups. These partnerships have included the construction of hygiene infrastructure around priority National Parks and the engagement of key stakeholders in the management of Phytophthora Dieback. The approach described has huge potential for the eradication and containment of other soil‐borne Phytophthora species around the world.

Item Type: Conference Item
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Centre for Phytophthora Science and Management
School of Biological Sciences and Biotechnology
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