Environmental issues

Pests and weeds

Pests and weeds

Pests and weeds damage our environment and agriculture. Find out what we are doing to manage these threats and how you can help.


Invasive species are one of the greatest threats to biodiversity in Australia. In NSW, pest animals and weeds have been identified as a threat to 70 per cent of the species, populations or ecological communities listed under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995. This is second only to clearing of native vegetation in terms of the number of species impacted.

Pest animals displace native species through predation and competition, and devastate threatened vegetation by grazing and trampling. Weeds smother native plants or cover the ground leaving no room for biodiversity to thrive. Pest animals and weeds also cause financial losses to agriculture and other industries and damage areas of cultural significance.

NSW Invasive Species Plan

The NSW Invasive Species Plan provides the framework for the coordinated management of pest animals and weeds across various land tenures and will guide invasive species management in NSW to 2015. NSW Department of Primary Industries is the lead agency for this plan. The Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) is a key partner in its implementation and has a lead role for pest threats to the environment.

The NSW Invasive Species Plan has four goals:

  • prevent the establishment of new invasive species
  • eliminate or prevent the spread of new invasive species
  • reduce the impacts of widespread invasive species
  • ensure NSW has the ability and commitment to manage invasive species.

Actions identified in the plan have been developed specifically to align with the reporting requirements for the NSW Natural Resources Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Strategy and the NSW State of the Environment Report.

What is OEH doing to manage pests?

OEH manages pests on its estate (such as national parks and nature reserves) and also develops and implements strategies for invasive species that threaten biodiversity. OEH management is focused on areas where native animals and plants are the most threatened, other park values are affected, or where pests are likely to affect neighbouring lands.

Pest management on the OEH estate is coordinated through:

For detailed information on controlling pests on the OEH estate, see Protecting our national parks from pest and weeds.

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Page last updated: 10 December 2015