The Carrick Invasive Species Project (CISP) is continuing to provide great training opportunities for local people throughout the Carrick region, to date 31 people have taken up the free training to obtain their PA6AW spraying certificates which allows them to carry out herbicide spraying needed to tackle Japanese knotweed and 8 people have attended the brushcutter/strimmer training giving them the skills to tackle large swaths of Himalayan balsam.   A sterling effort has been put in to date by these local volunteers who have dedicated up to 187 hours to Himalayan balsam clearance, 312 hours on Japanese knotweed spraying and up to 200 hours monitoring mink rafts across the Girvan and Stinchar river catchments.

The next free course for volunteers to obtain their City and Guilds PA6AW spraying certificates will run over the 22nd and 23rd February in Girvan.  There will also be a LANTRA Brushcutter/Trimmer course running over the 8th and 9th March in Girvan.  For more information on these free training courses and if you would like more information on monitoring a mink raft please get in touch with Meryl at meryl@ayrshireriverstrust.org, 07956426218, www.ayrshireriverstrust.org/cisp.

Volunteer hard at work spraying a large area of Japanese Knotweed on the Muck Water in 2013

A large stand of knotweed on the Girvan before treatment in 2012

The same area in August 2013, 1 year after treatment up to 95% of the stand has been reduced.

There is almost no evidence of knotweed after this stands treatment except the dead canes. Grass and other wildflowers can now grow as they aren’t being shaded out by the large knotweed plants anymore!

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