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Red witchweed (Striga asiatica) is a parasitic plant that grows attached to the roots of a ‘host’ plant. The weed then robs its host of water and nutrients, suppressing its growth.
A range of grasses are hosts of red witchweed, including grain crops and sugarcane.
If you are a cane grower based in the Mackay area please check your crops for red witchweed - this video explains how to identify it.
As a notifiable pest if you suspect you have this plant on your property please report it immediately to Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23.
Do not attempt to collect a sample as this may spread the seeds. For further information visit the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Queensland website