Tuesday, 11 November 2014

CABI releases rust fungus to control invasive Himalayan balsam

Himalayan Balsam (image courtesy of CABI)
Himalayan Balsam Rust fungus released
Himalayan Balsam is the bane of many a river managers life, with often the only effective treatment being hand pulling over a number of years.  Now a new agent is possibly coming to the rescue of reducing the impact of this pernicious non-native in the form of a fungus that is host specific.
On the 23 July 2014, the Himalayan balsam rust was approved for release by Defra Ministers making this the first fungal biological control agent to be released against a weed in the European Union.  The release was co-ordinated by CABI under licence from Natural England