An integrated solution for invasive species on the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme, Co. Cork

Invasive species were a big problem on the River Bandon Flood Relief Scheme in Co. Cork, threatening the integrity of the project and the health of the river. Rivus designed an effective solution to manage the problem and enable the Flood Relief Scheme works to continue.

The Problem

Invasive species (japanese knotweed, himalayan knotweed and himalayan balsam) were affecting the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme in Co. Cork. Before construction started, the extent of the problem was unknown. How many stands of plants were there? Where exactly where they? This presented a huge biosecurity risk to the project and to the river: these damaging species could easily spread along the watercourse, causing a major problems for the future integrity of the flood relief scheme and the health of the river.

Biosecurity measures on the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme

Biosecurity measures on the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme

The Rivus Solution

Our team surveyed the entire site, mapped the locations of the stands of invasive species and quantified their potential negative impacts on the project. We proposed a series of measures to manage the problem and detailed specific actions for each site. Our Registered Pesticide Advisor recommended that we use a special herbicide appropriate for watercourses to kill the knotweed during the growing season, which we did. We also supervised on-site works to ensure that biosecurity was maintained. This involved sealing all contaminated material (e.g. excavated soil and rubble) in sealed receptor sites.

Filling the sealed receptor site with contaminated material at the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme

Filling the sealed receptor site with contaminated material at the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme

The Result

Our intervention enabled the flood relief scheme to continue and reduced the impact of invasive species on the works. It also ensured that the project was biosecure, which is of crucial importance when dealing with species where the potential for spread is so serious. Because of the extent of the problem on the Bandon, there will always be a need to monitor and manage these plants along the waterway. For this reason, Rivus believes that a long-term, integrated management plan for the entire catchment is the most sustainable way to solve the problem.

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT THIS PROJECT? CONTACT SIMON FURNEY

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