Gorse/Furze (Ulex europaeus)

Weed control program

Section 371 (1) b of the Biosecurity Act 2015

This Weed Control Program is a Council endorsed document under Section 371 (1) (b) of the Biosecurity Act 2015 and describes how a person must discharge the person’s general biosecurity duty for the biosecurity matter (weed) described.

Plant species

Common name: Gorse/Furze
Scientific name: Ulex europaeus

Area of operation

Local government area of Eurobodalla Shire.

Species information

Gorse is regarded as one of the worst weeds in Australia because of its invasiveness, potential for spread, and economic and environmental impacts.

A mature infestation can produce up to six million seeds per ha each year. The seeds have a hard, water-resistant coating which allows them to remain dormant in the soil for up to 30 years. In pastoral areas it provides shelter for pests such as rabbits, increases the risk of bushfires because of its flammability, reduces access by forming dense thickets and dramatically reduces stocking rates.

Gorse has rendered many hectares of land in the midlands of Tasmania useless for grazing where it is estimated to cost approximately $1 million per annum in lost production, and it has the potential to become a major weed of both agriculture and natural areas in the Eurobodalla Shire.

Legal obligations

Any person who deals with biosecurity matter or a carrier and who knows, or ought reasonably to know, the biosecurity risk posed or likely to be posed by the biosecurity matter, carrier or dealing has a biosecurity duty to ensure that, so far as is reasonably practicable, the biosecurity risk is prevented, eliminated or minimised.

Weed risk assessment

Risk level: Medium
Impacts: Economy and environment
Control objective: Extirpation

Council control requirements

  1. The plant must be destroyed.
  2. The landholder must prevent spread from their land.
  3. The landholder or occupier must notify Council if the plant is found on the land.


A person who fails to discharge the person’s general biosecurity duty is guilty of an offence.

In the event that the general biosecurity duty is not discharged, Council may:

  • charge a reinspection fee
  • issue a fine notice (refer to Biosecurity Regulation 2017 (NSW) Schedule 6 - Penalty notice offences)
  • enter the property, perform weed direction works, and recoup all costs and expenses incurred.

Review date

When required.

Contact details

Invasive Species Supervisor - Biosecurity Act 2015 Authorised Officer
PO Box 99
Moruya NSW 2537

T: 02 4474 1000
E: council@esc.nsw.gov.au