Which are my worst weeds?' A simple ranking system for prioritizing weeds

R.P. Randall, Weed Science Group, Agriculture Western Australia, 3 Baron Hay Court, South Perth, Western Australia 6151, Australia.


The proposed ranking system is a relatively simple method for prioritization of local weeds by rehabilitation groups, farm, park or natural resource managers. Using biological characteristics, distribution and invasive behaviour, a ranking score is derived to compare all weeds on the site being assessed. Other ranking systems reviewed were in the main either too complex or considered only environmental weeds. All considered invasiveness, impacts and potential distribution. These three aspects, plus determining if the weed is a 'threatening' species worthy of an effort to eradicate or contain, form the basis of this ranking system. It is recommended that assessment of sites is conducted in facilitated workshop sessions to maximize the potential knowledge base available. Data from these sessions could then be kept for any future assessments and updated as necessary, allowing future assessments access to valuable prior work. While the system could be used to assess weed species over extensive regions it is considered better suited to smaller more discrete ecological units.


Plant Protection Quarterly (2000) 15 (3) 109-115.