Understanding the Significance of Muraltia Hesteria
Muraltia hesteria had 85 identified infestations across key locations of the Central Adelaide Hills in 2021. The locations include in Morialta, Giles, and Horsnell Gully Conservation Parks, as well as on a number of private properties in between. Its ability to thrive in steep heathy ecosystems, where other woody weeds have yet to emerge, the similarity of the Adelaide Hills habitat with respect to its native habitat in South Africa and the way the species persists even after years of concerted effort by many over the past 20 years underscores the urgency of addressing this threat to protect the unique biodiversity of our region. Had nothing been done in the past this weed would be far more widespread in the region than it currently is.
A Collaborative Effort to Combat Muraltia Hesteria
The Partnerships grant brings together numerous organisations and volunteers, ensuring a collaborative and comprehensive approach to combating this invasive weed. The project is supported by Friends of Black Hill & Morialta (FOBHM), National Parks and Wildlife Service of South Australia (NPWS), Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board (HFLB), Adelaide Hills Council (AHC), Fourth Creek Catchment Group (FCCG), Morialta Biolink Landcare Group (MBL), Biology Society of South Australia (BSSA), Climbing Club of South Australia (CCSA), Trail Running SA (TRSA), private landowners, and Threatened Plant Action Group volunteers.
Over the years, extensive monitoring, treatment, and mapping of Muraltia hesteria infestations has taken place involving state and local government, contractors, and community groups. Private landowners have also actively participated in weed control efforts. The project aims to continue these vital activities, including manual removal of seedlings, monitoring known infestations, mapping new incursions, and ensuring contractor works occurs in threatened species habitats within conservation parks.