Case Study 2 – Peel-Harvey Catchment Area Weed Control

Awarded the contract for weed spraying services for the Peel-Harvey Catchment area in 2021, Indigenous Workabout was engaged to identify pest species, mix chemicals and apply pesticides using backpack spraying.

Weed control is a natural fit with the existing landcare and gardening operations of Indigenous Workabout. Serving as guardians of the land, protecting the environment and fostering native Australian flora and fauna are all activities that come instinctively to Noongar people.

Being a business that exists to provide opportunities for indigenous employment, Indigenous Workabout is committed to training, and equipping Aboriginal people with the skills to be able to work. This weed control contract enabled Dean Wynne, a Noongar Elder, the opportunity to pass on valuable knowledge about plant species that are native to the Peel-Harvey catchment area. The employees of Indigenous Workabout who participated in this project learned to identify a range of invasive species and gain valuable experience in controlling their populations.

Preventing weeds from seeding, cutting down or extracting mature plants, painting stumps with pesticide are all techniques utilised to manage invasive species whilst minimising environmental impact and damage. Hand pulling small plants and seedlings where appropriate and spraying grouped populations of small plants and seedlings with pesticide are also techniques utilised to target pests and cause minimal harm to natives.

In this project Indigenous Workabout also carefully managed:

• Removal of cut and pulled plants from site, avoiding seed dispersal;

• Appropriate disposal of green waste;

• Supply of pesticide (e.g. chiefly glyphosate, metsulfuron but including other pesticides);

• General weed control where noticed (eg. occasionally encountered species such as blackberry, morning glory etc etc);

• Safety with use of appropriate PPE and managed work conditions; and

• To prepare and provide regular safety documentation (i.e. JSA, JSEA or SWMS).

Indigenous Workabout is committed to caring for Country and looking after Australia’s Southwest and the flora and fauna which are part of it.

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