Pasture dieback — species affected
- Most sown grass-pasture species commonly found in southern, central and northern Queensland have been affected by dieback.
- Some native grass-pasture species such as black speargrass, forest bluegrass and golden beard grass have also been reported to have been affected
Pasture dieback causes unthrifty growth and premature death of otherwise very productive topical and sub-tropical pastures. The condition has been identified across Queensland, including north Queensland, Mackay-Whitsunday, central Queensland, Wide Bay-Burnett and south-east Queensland regions. The condition causes large losses in pasture production, reducing property carrying capacities and beef production per hectare. The occurrence of dieback in pastures has accelerated in recent years, however it is not a new phenomenon; dieback in buffel grass pastures was reported in Central Queensland in the early 1990s, and dieback-like events were noted in tropical pastures in other areas of the state almost 100 years ago.
Known grass species affected
Most sown grass-pasture species commonly found in southern, central and northern Queensland have been affected by dieback. However, not every susceptible species is affected in every district, demonstrating the complexity of this condition. The sown grasses commonly reported, or known to be affected, are outlined below.
Some native grass-pasture species such as black speargrass (Heteropogon contortus), forest bluegrass (Bothriochloa bladhii) and golden beard grass (Chrysopogon fallax) have also been reported as affected.
|Scientific name||Common name||Cultivar(s)|
|Bothriochloa insculpta||Creeping bluegrass||Bisset|
|Cenchrus ciliaris||Buffel||USA (American), Gayndah|
|Megathyrsus maximus||Panic||Petrie (Green); Gatton|
|Panicum coloratum||Bambatsi panic||Bambatsi|
|Paspalum mandiocanum||Broad leaf paspalum|
|Setaria sphacelata||Setaria||Kazungula, Nandi|
For more information
The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) team is encouraging graziers affected by dieback (existing, new, or recovered) to make contact. This will help us understand this condition better, and to provide any available assistance. Please call the DAF Customer Service Centre on 13 25 23.
Stakeholders are always welcome to visit your local DAF office and talk to an extension officer.
Related pasture dieback information:
- Pasture dieback factsheets (March 2021)
- Calling graziers who want to increase knowledge and ability to combat pasture dieback!
- Pasture dieback research update (May 2020)
- Latest insights into pasture dieback webinar recording (February 2019)
- Pasture dieback: past activities and current situation across Queensland report
- Sown pasture rundown
- Pasture dieback (Meat & Livestock Australia)