Puccinia cnici-oleracei (ex. Conyza) risk analysis

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We have finalised the risk analysis for the proposed release of the rust fungus Puccinia cnici-oleracei (ex. Conyza) into Australia. The purpose of this release is to control flaxleaf fleabane (Conyza bonariensis), an invasive agricultural and environmental weed.

The use of exotic biological control agents to control invertebrate pests, weeds and other organisms has been common in Australia for many years. Releasing pathogenic, herbivorous, predatory or parasitic organisms into the Australian environment can have potential “off-target” risks. This means risk to other plants or invertebrate animals not targeted by the biological control agent.

We began this risk analysis in response to an application to release Puccinia cnici-oleracei (ex. Conyza) to control Conyza bonariensis. The application was submitted by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment will not commence an assessment to release a biological control agent unless the target pest species has been approved by an appropriate government body. Conyza bonariensis was approved as a target for biological control by the former Invasive Plants and Animals Committee (IPAC) in November 2017.

All comments received on the draft risk analysis were considered in finalising the risk analysis.

You can read the final risk analysis report. The final risk analysis report outlines the identified biosecurity risks associated with the release of Puccinia cnici-oleracei for the biological control of Conyza bonariensis, and proposed risk management measures.

We have finalised the risk analysis for the proposed release of the rust fungus Puccinia cnici-oleracei (ex. Conyza) into Australia. The purpose of this release is to control flaxleaf fleabane (Conyza bonariensis), an invasive agricultural and environmental weed.

The use of exotic biological control agents to control invertebrate pests, weeds and other organisms has been common in Australia for many years. Releasing pathogenic, herbivorous, predatory or parasitic organisms into the Australian environment can have potential “off-target” risks. This means risk to other plants or invertebrate animals not targeted by the biological control agent.

We began this risk analysis in response to an application to release Puccinia cnici-oleracei (ex. Conyza) to control Conyza bonariensis. The application was submitted by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment will not commence an assessment to release a biological control agent unless the target pest species has been approved by an appropriate government body. Conyza bonariensis was approved as a target for biological control by the former Invasive Plants and Animals Committee (IPAC) in November 2017.

All comments received on the draft risk analysis were considered in finalising the risk analysis.

You can read the final risk analysis report. The final risk analysis report outlines the identified biosecurity risks associated with the release of Puccinia cnici-oleracei for the biological control of Conyza bonariensis, and proposed risk management measures.