Sydney NSW, Australia
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Biocontrol solution for sustainable management of aquatic weed


Australia's national science agency, CSIRO, and one of the nation's largest water companies Seqwater, are using a tiny defender—a weevil smaller than a grain of rice—to help stop an exotic weed spreading through Australia's waterways.

Cabomba (Cabomba caroliniana) is a fast-spreading aquatic weed from South America and unless addressed, could take over many of Australia's waterways.

After years of rigorous research in South America and Australia, scientists have released cabomba's ancient enemy, the cabomba weevil (Hydrotimetes natans), into Lake Kurwongbah, a water asset managed by Seqwater, north of Brisbane. This is the first release of a biocontrol agent against cabomba anywhere in the world.

CSIRO scientist Kumaran Nagalingam said cabomba was originally introduced to Australia in 1967 as an aquarium plant and has since spread along the east coast of Australia from Cairns to Melbourne.

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