The City helps to manage and treat various introduced and naturally occurring diseases in its natural areas. This is achieved by implementing various management practices to control the impacts of these diseases.
Phytophthora Dieback invades the root systems of susceptible plant species, causing them to die. There are many species of Phytophthora Dieback in Perth soils, which have been introduced from across the world. The infections change vegetation communities and affect native animals.
Phytophthora Dieback is managed by treating infected areas with phosphite on a three-year cycle. Keep on eye out for Dieback Protection Area signs, which warn visitors about the presence of dieback. The City has also started planting dieback resistant seedlings to restore infected areas.
The most common way to spread dieback is through transferring wet soil on shoes and vehicles. You can help by observing signs, walking on designated pathways, and brushing dirt of your shoes on entry to dieback free bushland areas.
If you have bushland on your property and have noticed plants dying, please contact us. Our Parks Conservation Officer can discuss dieback identification and treatment options.
Marri Canker Disease and Quambalaria Shoot Blight
Marri Canker Disease is a contributing factor to the decline in health of Marri trees. Marri Canker is more prevalent in disturbed areas, such as road verges, medians and parks. Factors such as soil nutrients and mycorrhizal associations may make Marri trees more likely to become infected.
The City monitors Marri trees for symptoms of the disease, which may include:
- large areas of cracked bark
- large amounts of exuded red gum
- white powdery masses on diseased areas.
Similarly, Quambalaria Shoot Blight is an introduced disease from the east coast of Australia. The disease stunts growth and attacks shoots, leaves and flower buds of Marri. The City records and reports incidences of these diseases and participates in treatment trials where possible.
Botulism is a bacterial toxin affecting waterbirds. The toxin is produced when water conditions are favourable, and high organic matter and low oxygen levels have enabled bacteria spores to multiply.
Waterbirds become infected by swallowing the toxin. Poisoned birds are usually paralysed and need immediate treatment to avoid death. Our Natural Areas team help by rescuing sick birds and delivering them to wildlife shelters.
The City helps to manage botulism by recording incidences and reporting them to the Department of Agriculture and Food. The City also helps to maintain healthy waterways through revegetation and restoration. This helps to prevent the water conditions suitable for the growth of the bacterium.
It is recommend you don't feed waterbirds human food. This can increase the nutrient loading of a waterway and produce favourable conditions for the growth of the bacterium. For more information, download the To Feed or Not to Feed? brochure (PDF 1.6MB).