To: "kfp" <>, "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Lantana
From: "michael norris" <>
Date: Tue, 5 Dec 2006 22:17:10 +1100
I try never to talk about clearing weeds, only about replacing weeds.

Planting (a great favourite with the general public) is one possibility but there is recent research suggesting that in many circumstances just removing weeds is sufficient, because it will lead to natural regeneration.

Of course there is evidence that in some locations invasive environmental weeds (IEW), such as lantana, are great habitat or food sources.

In some instances, for example where Blackberry provides the only nest sites for Fairy-wrens, it is good to provide alternative planted habitat as part of staged replacement.

I think retention should be encouraged only where the affected species are threatened (on some important scale) and there is a clear policy for managing the weed (often including removing fruit, especially where it is likely to be dispersed by birds, foxes...). The recent article on Camphor Laurel in Australian Field Ornithology was interesting about a downside of a particular IEW. It can, see the archives, attract rare birds but the article suggests they may be poisoned by eating the fruit.

All that said, I have planted Tree Lucerne in my back yard for the honeyeaters!

Michael Norris

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