Communities Combating Pests & Weeds Grant Opportunity

Colac Otway Shire Council’s Environment unit is very pleased to announce a further round of the Communities Combating Pests and Weeds grant opportunity for spring and early summer 2020. The grant enables Council to directly support private property owners across the shire in their efforts to control weeds and rabbits on their properties.

This grant from the federal government is a rare funding steam for Council that enables us to help our communities treat high-priority weed species and conduct rabbit control on private land. The program benefits rural and farming communities within the shire, with funding support to substantially increase the capacity of community members to manage the difficult and complex issues created by weeds and pests.

The Communities Combating Pests and Weeds program also aims to have significant biodiversity outcomes, and Council is seeking to maximise the positive impacts by carefully prioritising projects and aligning works with existing efforts being made to tackle weeds and rabbits across the region.

This project is funded by the Australian Government under the Communities Combating Pests and Weed Impacts During Drought Program.

A Second Round of the applications for the program is now open, with the final Application deadline being 16 September 2020.

Please note that all on-ground works for the program must be completed by 16 December 2020.

To submit an application please visit

If you require assistance with you application, please contact Liza Kennedy, Council's Environment Officer, on 5232 9400 or email

Program Details

Program Activities

The grant funding will be allocated to weed treatment and/or rabbit control programs on private land across Colac Otway Shire. The program will also be run on Council-managed land, and opportunities to maximise the impact of the program by aligning projects are being pursued. Weed species eligible for treatment under the program are listed below.

Target Weed Species

Weed species eligible for treatment under the grant are as follows:

  • African Boxthorn – Lycium ferocissimum
  • Blackberry – Rubus fruticosus
  • Cape Broom/ Montpellier Broom – Genista monspessulana
  • English Broom/Scotch Broom – Cytisus scoparius
  • Flax-leaved Broom – Genista IinifoIia
  • Spiny Broom – Calicotome spinose
  • Gorse – Ulex europaeus
  • Hawthorn – Crataegus monogyna
  • Ragwort – Senecio jacobaea
  • St John’s Wort – Hypericum perforatum

Process Outline and Timeline 

Process Outline and Timeline for Private Landholders(PDF, 464KB)

Objectives of the Program

The objectives of this program are to:

  • Assist communities manage the impact of vertebrate pest animals and weeds
  • Contribute to the government’s broader biosecurity objectives
  • Limit the negative impact of pest animals and weeds on agricultural production
  • Stimulate economic activity in areas where projects take place
  • Provide a long-term benefit to communities where projects take place

Further Information

Do I need to make a financial contribution in order to participate in the program?

Yes. In order to ensure that the resources available have the widest possible reach, the program will require private landowners to contribute an amount equivalent to what they receive through the grant for works on their private land – i.e. successful projects will be allocated 50% of the overall cost of their program under the grant.

Please note: due to the standard of work required, as well as environmental and safety considerations, suitably qualified service providers must be engaged to undertake the works. Funding will not be allocated to individuals to undertake weed or rabbit control themselves.

Will I need to make a commitment to undertake follow-up works?

Yes. As part of management plans to be agreed between Council and successful grant recipients, Council will be seeking a commitment from landowners to undertake necessary follow-up works for a minimum of two years.

What will be prioritised in determining allocation of the funding?

As outlined above, projects that demonstrate and positively contribute to the following three desired project outcomes will be prioritised:

  • landscape-scale impact
  • best practice methods
  • biodiversity outcomes

If you have any enquiries, please contact Liza Kennedy from Council's Environment Unit on 5232 9400 or email