SA’s Environmental Department is warning hike-goers not to eat wild blackberries as they have been sprayed by a poisonous weed killer.
As we enter the fruits ripening stage, it seems tempting to grab a handful of fresh berries when your out and about in South Australia’s beautiful wilderness. However, you should definitely think twice as Government land shrubs have been sprayed with weed killers including Tordon and Roundup. These weed killers have been banned in certain parts of the world due to their toxicity to humans.
“You can spot blackberry shrubs while enjoying South Australia’s Mount Lofty Ranges in Belair National Park or Cleland Conservation Park along the popular Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty summit hike,” a spokesman from the Environmental Department said.
“To control the sprawling European blackberry shrub, regular chemical spraying is carried out in our parks and reserves, and by councils across the state.”
“The potentially poisonous chemical spray is absorbed into the plant through the leaves and, or, its roots.”
Be aware that non-government land may also have been sprayed including Eyre Peninsula, scattered locations along the Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, forests in the South East, isolated infestations in the Riverland, Kangaroo Island, the Mid North and Yorke Peninsula.
The weed is being removed due to its over-crowding of native plants, high water usage, promotion of soil erosion and provides food and shelter for pests.