Darwin Man Caught Selling Weed on Gumtree


The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has issued a Darwin man with a verbal warning after he was caught selling a banned weed on Gumtree.

DENR Weed Management Branch policy and planning director, Belinda Townend, said the incident was a reminder to the public that selling declared weeds is illegal.

In this particular case the man was trying to sell water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) which is a Weed of National Significance (WoNS).

Water hyacinth is native to Brazil and was introduced to Australia in the 1890s as an ornamental plant for ponds and aquariums and has now become established in coastal Queensland and New South Wales.

It is declared in the Northern Territory as a Class A (to be eradicated) and Class C (not to be introduced into the NT) weed.

There are currently no known establishments of water hyacinth in the Northern Territory and Ms Townend thanked the Department of Primary Industry and Resources for their collaborative efforts that resulted in the confiscation of 75 water hyacinth plants.

“Water hyacinth might look pretty to some people but their impacts on our environment can be very ugly,” Ms Townend said.

“This noxious weed is an aggressive invader of permanent freshwater bodies and can grow quickly to form large, dense mats over the water surface.

“This declared weed can restrict recreational activities such as swimming, boating and fishing if it gets into our natural waterways.

“Water hyacinth can destroy freshwater wetlands and the native plants and animals that live in them, while also creating an environment that encourages mosquito breeding.

“Infestations can double in size in just a few weeks with a single plant capable of covering 600 square metres during one year of reproduction.

“Water hyacinth can block waterways and reduce water quality, increase water storage of dams and interfere with irrigation.”

Anyone who thinks they might have bought, sold or owns a declared weed should contact the Weed Management Branch on 89994567.

Go to www.nt.gov.au/weeds for more information about declared weeds in the Northern Territory.

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