Alligator weed (Alternanthera philoxeroides) and cabomba (or Caroline fanwort, Cabomba caroliniana) are two aquatic weeds of national significance. Because of the weeds’ economic, social and environmental impacts and the difficulty of controlling them by using conventional methods, biological control is recognised as an important research component in the national strategies for dealing with the weeds.
This project represents the culmination of two previous projects, begun in 2003, aimed at finding safe and effective biological agents to control these weeds. In earlier research we had previously identified, prioritised and started the host specificity testing of several potential invertebrate agents. The goal of this project was to provide safe and sustainable control of the two introduced aquatic weeds, focusing on two priorities—biological control and improvements in best-practice methodology.