Thursday, 29 August 2013

Mad Panic in Scottish Borders

Today's blog posting is about the silly unnecessary panic in the Scottish Borders as reported in the Southern Reporter

Councillor Gavin Logan is expected to raise the issue of the toxic plant in the open questions section of the meeting.
He is set to ask officials: “Has the council any long-term plans to deal with the scourge of ragwort on council-owned land?”
The Conservative councillor for Tweeddale East told us: “The point of the question is, if the council are not controlling ragwort, why should the other landowners in the Borders bother?”
Well perhaps the council should be sensible and not fall for the hysteria on ragwort.
Poisoning is so rare as not to be of any significance and most of the stuff is made up. The statistics seem to indicate that grass is a worse problem for horses

Under the 1959 Weeds Act, landowners, including councils, are bound to remove the noxious weed from land they own.
 This is not true the weeds act does not say that. There is no automatic responisbility placed on landowners or councils to do anything. See this briefing on ragwort law

He admitted: “There are cost implications, however potential costs can only rise if ragwort continues to spread.”

To right this is a waste of money. Ragwort is not increasing. Ther last government survey showed a really significant decrease . There is a recognised psychological phenomenon where somehting seems commoner because it is drawn to someone's attention.

When complaints have been made about the propaganda the Advertising Standards Authority has stopped adverts..

Ragwort is one of the most important wildflowers  for biodiversity the charity Buglife has a special set of pages.

A large set of myths about ragwort are debunked here

Ragwort Hysteria latest entries

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