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TAS Country : January 3rd 2013
20 Tasmanian Country Friday, January 4, 2013 WIDESPREAD: Flaxleaf fleabane has developed glyphosate resistance and is highly prevalent. Weed resistance a risk KAROLIN MacGREGOR ONE in 10 weed species in Australia is at high risk for glyphosate resistance, according to a series of new research projects. The research has shown there are now 23 weed species that are at high risk of developing resistance, including several important grasses and damag- ing environmental weeds. Australian Glyphosate Sustain- ability Working Group executive offi- cer Andrew Storrie said most of the weeds tested in the project were found right across the country. ''While resistance to glyphosate in cropping has been making headlines around the world, this study suggests it could become a problem in any Aust- ralian weed management situation,'' he said. Two hundred weed species were analysed to determine their innate likelihood to evolve in response to continued selection by herbicides. The projects were funded through the Department of Agriculture, Fi- sheries and Forestry National Weeds and Productivity Research Program. David Thornby from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and For- estry, who was also involved with the project, said weed managers have a range of tactics to help them manage different species. ''Where a species is at high risk of developing glyphosate resistance, it is vital not to rely on a single herbicide,'' he said. ''Most weed managers have multiple problems competing for scarce re- sources, labour, time, money and atten- tion, and risk assessments can be used by managers to help them decide how to organise their resources.'' Mr Thornby said it was important to spend time planning and monitoring the range of management options available for species that appeared to have the highest risk of developing herbicide resistance. He said it was also important to remember that there was no corre- lation between resistance risk and factors such as weediness, invasiven- ess or ease of control. ''What this study shows is that we need to be thinking about how we use herbicides in every situation, both agricultural and non-agricultural weed control,'' he said. The top five listed weeds are needle burr, sweet summer grass, vulpia species, and flaxleaf fleabane and liver- seed grass, which have already devel- oped some glyphosate resistance. Mr Thornby said luckily almost half the species assessed were at low risk and the remainder were at moderate risk. However some of the low-risk species, such as nutgrass, bladder ketmia, salvinia and alligator weed, were highly prevalent in all areas. To find out more about the projects or glyphosate resistance go to www.gly- phosateresistance.org.au News Eltons Claire creams the competition KAROLIN MacGREGOR WINNER: Anne Heazlewood with Merseybank Eltons Claire among the Jersey herd at Latrobe. Picture: CHRIS KIDD A BREEDING gamble has well and truly paid off for Jersey stud owners Geoff and Anne Heazlewood. For the first time a Tasmanian-bred Jersey has won the Supreme Cham- pion award at the Great Southern On- Farm Challenge. The Heazlewoods' home-bred cow Merseybank Eltons Claire Ex92 took out the national award. The cow was bred using semen from an unproven progeny test bull, which has since gone on to be one of the country's best bulls. The five-year-old cow won the Tas- manian on-farm challenge and was up against entrants from New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia for the national title. The cow won the mature cow class before going on to be named Supreme Champion across all age groups. There were about 1200 cows entered in this year's on-farm challenges in three states. After the state compe- titions, 11 cows from each age section were chosen as finalists and assessed by a different judge. Video and photos of all the finalist cows were taken. Mr Heazlewood said that while Claire had a good history in the on- farm challenge, it was still a surprise to take out the top award. ''They do it a bit like the football competition where they show the videos starting from number 11 down, it's a good way to build up the suspense,'' he said. ''When it got down to the final two and ours still hadn't been shown I was getting a bit warm under the collar that's for sure.'' Mr Heazlewood said cows in the competition were judged on a number of sections that focused on different structural parts. ''The judge said she really had no faults and she scored really well in all the sections, so that's why she did so well,'' he said. Mr Heazlewood said, however, that Claire was not the sort of cow that really stood out in the herd. ''She's quite a strong cow and an aggressive feeder and she's always been very strong health-wise, she's never had any problems, but she just does the job.'' Mr Heazlewood said good fertility and the ability to get in calf every year was another of Claire's strengths. Last year the Heazlewoods' used her for an embryo program and got 16 A-grade embryos from her. The Heazlewoods implanted six em- bryos into cows last year and bred two calves, a heifer and a bull. The bull calf has been sold to an artificial breeding company interstate. They sold five embryos at Inter- national Dairy Week and have just finished implanting another six of Claire's embryos into cows this breed- ing season. Claire also has a two-year-old daugh- ter and a yearling daughter. ''She's by a progeny test bull and I chose to use him because I knew the breeding pretty well and liked it,'' Mr Heazlewood said. ''He's gone on to be one of the best AI bulls in the country now. I think he has about 20,000 progeny now.''
December 20th 2012
January 10th 2013