giant hogweed, environment agency, herbicidal treatment, sprayiing, round up, glyphosate

Invasive Non-Native Species Management - Environment Agency

We are currently just finishing up Phase 1 of one of the largest catchment-scale invasive non-native species management projects in the country. This work is being carried out on behalf of the Environment Agency.


Phase 1 refers to the first sweep of treatment targeting Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum). Giant Hogweed poses a risk to public health through toxic sap, and can spread rapidly throughout river systems.

In 2019 we have carried out treatment on the Lower Aire & Lower Don, Upper Don, Dearne & Rother, and the Calder. Our teams are all NPTC qualified operatives and treatment is carried out through handheld and boat-mounted sprayers.

Phase 2 will begin in late June and will target any re-growth of Giant Hogweed. In this month we will also begin treatment of Floating Pennywort (Hydrocotyle ranunculoides) which again, will be targeted across 2 phases.

Phase 3 will be carried out in September and focus on Japanese Knotweed (Fallopia japonica).

This is the second year of what will be a 3 year treatment programmed funded by the Environment Agency. In 2018, we surveyed over 450 km of watercourse throughout Yorkshire for invasive weeds, with the aim of recording and reporting what is growing, and where. This provided guidance to the Environment Agency on the scale of management resource needed in subsequent years.

In 2019, we have expanded our survey area to include the North East region of Yorkshire taking on an additional 1000 km.

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