Hudson Pear Threat to North West NSW

Hudson Pear Threat to North West NSW

1,634 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500!

Why this petition matters

Started by Opal Reserve

The Lightning Ridge Area Opal Reserve (LRAOR) is asking you to sign this petition to support the need for Government funding for two or more dedicated positions to effectively control Hudson Pear across the Walgett Shire and Narran Warrambool Reserve, and further through Western NSW.

This alarming spike and spread threatens prime agricultural land, Crown Land, National Parks, Narran Lakes (Ramsar site)*, Narran River, and River systems further afield. Its presence on flood plains in north-western NSW is particularly worrying as a major flood event could result in a significant increase in its distribution including movement into the Darling River system.

Hudson Pear is a truly nasty cactus, with burrs in the tips of its spikes. It was grown on Grawin Opal Fields at a nursery and was purchased by miners who would plant it around their claim to deter night-time visitors in their mine (ratters). It has since spread far and wide by getting stuck in animal fur, attaching to vehicles and sticking in people's boots. 

We are seeking your support in lobbying NSW Government for the funding of two or more full time Hudson Pear Pest Officer positions, at an estimated costs of $2million to $5million over 5 years.

These positions would be responsible for assisting the full-time running of the bio-control cochineal breeding facility at the Walgett Council depot, located in Lightning Ridge.
This would entail full time collecting & releasing of cochineal as well as spraying high-risk areas. Importantly these positions would not be limited by land-titles or boundaries, and they would be responsible for releasing & spraying on all titles including, but not limited to: Western Land Lease’s, Freehold, Crownland, Mining titles, Council Land, Residential titles, private land etc.

Our board acknowledges the positive work that the Castlereagh Macquarie County Council has undertaken so far in releasing the biological cochineal and our staff have been involved in the collection and release of cochineal on the Reserve. However, the board is of the opinion that it is clear that the community driven release model is not working and that additional staffing and resources are needed if the exponential spread of Hudson Pear is to be mitigated in the Walgett Shire and beyond.

Our Crown Land manager group is responsible for the management of over twenty-two thousand hectares of Crown Land in three separate locations (Lightning Ridge, Coocoran, Grawin) and we are observing rapid growth and spread of Hudson Pear in these areas and further
The spread of Hudson Pear is not limited to the NSW Government land that we manage, it is being observed on neighbouring Western Land Lease grazing properties, private property, other Crown Land areas, Council Road edges, mining claims, residential claims, and stock routes etc.

The scope of the infestation of Hudson Pear is immense, and is beyond the point of individual responsibility. We believe additional government funding is absolutely essential, and needed urgently.

Please sign this petition to help us gain the support to control this weed and stop its devastating impact across rural NSW and beyond.


1,634 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500!