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TASMANIAN COUNTRY, Friday, April 17, 2015 07
to help beat
THE cooler months of autumn
and winter present an ideal
window of opportunity to wipe
out the emerging threat of
myrtle rust across the state, ac-
cording to Biosecurity Tas-
mania’s chief plant health
manager Andrew Bishop.
He said that since the fun-
gal disease reared its head in
the state about two months
ago, 430 properties had been
inspected, revealing 44 prem-
ises with infected plants.
Mr Bishop said after a
steady stream of calls to the
Biosecurity Tasmania hotline
all affected properties had
been treated, and there was an
ongoing focus on identifying
“The premises identified
have been a mixture of nurser-
ies and private residences,” he
“The fungus produces
spores, and our biggest issue is
that they are going to become
airborne, so we are treating it
with an adhesive to fix it in
place during removal.
“While a lot of the calls
coming in are producing nega-
tive test results, the fact that
people are using the hotline
makes us happy, and we would
rather go out and check some-
thing that turns out not to be
myrtle rust than it not be re-
Mr Bishop said that so far
most incidents had involved
Lophomyrtus varieties and
more recently Chilean guavas
affected by cross-contami-
nation in nurseries.
“At this stage we have had
no detections in the bush or
among native species, which is
a real positive and gives us
hope,” Mr Bishop said.
“And the timing of all this
does give us an advantage in
the eradication program,
because if we were at the other
end of the season this could be
getting away from us and be
almost impossible to catch.
“But the colder tempera-
tures do put a stop to it, and
while spores do survive on in-
fected plants over a number of
months, winter gives us the op-
portunity to catch up and get
on top of it.”
Phone the Biosecurity Tas-
mania hotline 6165 3785 or
visit dpipwe.tas.gov.au for
RURAL Youth state president and former
young farmer of the year winner Prue
Dennis is heading to Britain tomorrow for
a study tour.
“It’s going to be epic, it’s exciting but I
am a bit nervous because I have never
been outside of Australia,” Ms Dennis said
before her six-week Rural Youth tour.
“I am going with an open mind to
absorb what I learn from the trip.”
A member of the Westmorland club,
the 23-year-old from Cressy is a on a
trajectory to excellence in the rural sector.
Ms Dennis won Rural Youth’s young
farmer of the year title in 2014 and took
over the state presidency from Simone
Heyers earlier this year.
Although she will miss Agfest, the
biggest event on the Rural Youth calendar,
she said her strong team could handle any
issues in her absence.
Ms Dennis will be in England for three
weeks and then learn about farming in
Northern Ireland before returning home.
She grew up on the family farm, moved
into rural merchandise with Roberts’
Prospect store and works as an equine nu-
She said her job was varied and gave
her plenty of opportunities to develop
practical solutions to help customers.
“I love problem-solving.”
Tasmanian Country provides $3000
towards the cost of the Rural Youth study
tour. Ms Dennis’ adventure can be
followed on her Facebook page.
We have had no
detections in the
bush or among
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Reducing Risk of Coronar y
Arter y Disease in Families
Study Volunteers Needed
Menzies Institute for Medical Research is conducting a study
on prevention of Coronary Artery Disease in people who have
a family history of this illness.
To qualify for this important study, volunteers must be:
• between 35 and 70 years of age;
• have a family member (parent, grandparent, sibling, aunt, uncle)
who has had a heart attack, stent or heart surgery before the
age of 60; and
• not currently taking a statin drug.
If you are interested and would like further information
please email Menzies.CAUGHT@utas.edu.au or call the study
co-ordinator on 03 6226-4235 and leave your contact details.
Research approved by the Tasmanian Health and Medical
Human Research Ethics Committee
Value Adding in Tasmania
The best poppy crops usually follow
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Your Field Offcer can advise.
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