Revolutionary pest animal and weed control projects

10 February 2021
  • 19 innovative projects will be funded through the $13 million Advancing Pest Animal and Weed Control Solutions Competitive Grant Round 
  • Projects will deliver a range of control solutions leading to more cost effective and safer alternatives to manage pest animals and weeds
  • Projects will target over 30 weed species and 15 pest animals/invertebrates

Nineteen projects will be funded following a competitive grant process to research and advance breakthrough solutions to control of some of Australia’s worst established pest animals and weeds, including fall armyworm and prickly acacia.

Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, said he was delighted with the high calibre and diversity of projects coming from the popular grant round.

“Successful projects will shift away from traditional pest animal and weed management approaches to develop new and emerging technologies,” Minister Littleproud said. 

“Technologies could be adapted to control other pest and weed species, providing a broader suite of control options for integrated pest and weed management

“The grant round projects will assist in overcoming emerging issues such as herbicide resistance and provide more effective alternatives for controlling pests such as hive beetles.

“Our native species will also benefit through a reduction in pest and weeds that predate and, or compete for resources.

“Successful projects will share $13 million over the next three years which will be supported by close to $12 million in other cash and in-kind support to add value to the program.

“Congratulations to the grant recipients, I look forward to positive outcomes from these projects for landholders and the environment.”

Further details on the grant round and a list of successful applicants is at https://www.agriculture.gov.au/pests-diseases-weeds/pest-animals-and-weeds/grant-round

Fast Facts:

  • The annual national cost of established vertebrate pest animals is estimated at $800 million, and over $4 billion for weeds
  • The grant round was well received with 197 eligible applications submitted
  • Applications were evaluated by an independent expert assessment panel with skills and experience in pest animal and weed management, policy, research, and governance
  • The grant round is part of the broader $30.3 million Pest Animals and Weeds Management Pipeline Program
  • Successful projects include: 
    • a DNA-based genomic herbicide resistance testing platform
    • improving current biocontrol methods in rabbits
    • using gene drive suppression to eliminate invasive pest populations
    • improving detection and monitoring using eDNA
    • developing non-toxic pesticides using naturally derived minerals
    • exploring refrigeration techniques for grain pest control 
    • developing autonomous machinery to replace herbicide for under-vine weed control