Pest plants and animals affect the lives of all Queenslanders. They degrade our natural resources, damage precious remnant vegetation, compromise biodiversity and interfere with human health and recreation. They cause financial losses to ecotourism and cost Queenslanders over $600m annually in lost production and control costs.
The Biosecurity Act
The Biosecurity Act 2014 (the Act) commenced on 1 July 2016 and ensures a consistent, modern, risk-based and less prescriptive approach to biosecurity in Queensland.
The Act provides comprehensive biosecurity measures to safeguard our economy, agricultural and tourism industries, environment and way of life from:
- Pests (e.g. wild dogs and weeds)
- Diseases (e.g. foot-and-mouth disease)
- Contaminants (e.g. lead on grazing land).
The Act replaced the many separate pieces of legislation previously used to manage biosecurity. Decisions made under the Act will depend on the likelihood and consequences of the risk. This means risks can be managed more appropriately.
City of Ipswich Biosecurity Plan 2018-2023
The Biosecurity Act 2014 requires each local government in Queensland produce a biosecurity plan that prioritises invasive species management based on inherent risk.
Within our plan, the prioritisation has been aggregated into four management strategies derived from the generalised invasion curve (a tool for understanding invasive species management).
These management strategies provide residents with guidance on how to discharge their general biosecurity obligation (GBO) and collectively work to lessen the impacts of invasive species in the Ipswich local government area (LGA).
The purpose of the Biosecurity Plan is to improve invasive pest management within the Ipswich LGA by:
- Developing the methodology to assess where stakeholders (government, industry and community) should direct their efforts and investments at the various stages of incursion.
- Setting achievable city-wide management strategies and obligations to manage invasive plant and animal species in the Ipswich LGA.
- Identifying actions that encourages mechanisms to inform, support and integrate pest management activities.
- Outlining the process to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of the plan.
City of Ipswich Biosecurity Plan 2018-2023 (PDF, 1.4 MB)
The General Biosecurity Obligation (GBO)
All Queenslanders have a ‘general biosecurity obligation’ (GBO) under the Act. This means that everyone is responsible for managing biosecurity risks that are under their control or that they know about, or should reasonably be expected to know about.
Under the GBO, individuals and organisations whose activities pose a biosecurity risk must:
- Take all reasonable and practical steps to prevent or minimise each biosecurity risk.
- Minimise the likelihood of causing a biosecurity event and limit the consequences if such an event is caused.
- Prevent or minimise the harmful effects a risk could have and not do anything that might make any harmful effects worse.
Mosquitoes need water to breed. Pooling or ponding water that is stagnant (not flowing) has the potential to be a mosquito breeding site. Mosquitoes can transfer diseases such as Ross River virus, Barmah Forrest virus and Dengue fever and can cause heartworm in dogs. For this reason it is important that you do not allow mosquitoes to breed on your property. Most mosquito species are active around dusk and the two hours after dusk, but some species are active throughout the day. They are more prolific in the summer months, breeding any time from October to April. If you are outside at dusk during summer ensure that you are wearing a loose-fitting long shirt and pants and apply mosquito repellant. Mosquito control is regulated under the Public Health Act 2005 and outlines requirements for eliminating breeding sites. For more information download the Mosquito Control Factsheet (see under 'More information' below).
- Screen windows and doors and/or use mosquito nets over beds and cots.
- Avoid going outside at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active.
- If you must go outside, use a repellent and wear loose long-sleeved shirts and trousers.
- Air conditioning, fans, mosquito coils and plug-in mosquito repellents can be used to discourage mosquitoes.
- Mosquitoes can go from an egg to adult in one week in hot summer conditions.
- Breeding sites can include fresh, salt, clean or polluted water, depending on the species.
- Healthy wetlands are not significant breeding sites as they support a balanced ecosystem containing natural predators of mosquito and its larvae.
- Females mosquitoes are the ones that bite as they need blood to develop eggs.
- Female mosquitoes can lay up to 200 eggs at a time.
- Male mosquitoes feed on honeydew and nectar.
- Mosquitoes find us by detecting warmth, moisture, carbon dioxide (which we breath out) and by sight at close distances.
Most common breeding sites
The five major breeding sites around the home are:
- Ponding water: pools of still and shallow water attract mosquitoes wishing to breed. Fill them with soil or sand and plant over with grass or attractive plants.
- Pot plant bases: the shallow warmed water in pot plant bases is ideal for mosquito breeding and can support up to 150 mosquito larvae. Place sand in bases to absorb extra moisture and empty bases regularly, wiping each out with a cloth to remove mosquito eggs.
- Blocked roof guttering: clogged, unmaintained guttering prevents rainwater escaping. Keep tree branches away from gutters and check gutters regularly for and clear leaves and obstructions.
- Collections of rubbish: not only are collections of disused items around the home attractive to vermin such as rats and mice, they can hold small pools of water for mosquito breeding. Dispose of all disused items around the house at one of Council's refuse and recycle centres and store items for future use in a tidy fashion, preferably undercover. Ensure drums and other containers capable of holding water are stored upside down.
- Tyres: unused tyres are not only unsightly, they can hold water and provide an ideal warm site for mosquito breeding. Dispose of old tyres appropriately or store them undercover. Drill holes in tyres used as children's swings to allow water to drain.
Other sites to check
- Cavities in bricks
- Water holding plants (e.g. bromeliads and staghorns)
- Bird baths
- Children's wading pools
- Unchlorinated swimming pools
- Boats and dinghies
- Flower vases
- Unstocked fish ponds
- Unscreened water tanks