Release of the Biological Control Agent Puccinia jaceae var. solstitialis for Management of Yellow Starthistle at Fort Hunter Liggett, CA
ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT CENTER VICKSBURG MS
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Fort Hunter Liggett is a United States Army fort in southern Monterey County, California, about 250 miles 402 km north of Los Angeles and 150 miles 241 km south of San Francisco. The fort is primarily used as a training facility, where activities such as field maneuvers and live fire exercises are performed. The fort is bordered on the north by Salinas Valley, on the east by the Santa Lucia Mountains, on the west by the Los Padres National Forest, and on the south by the Monterey and San Luis Obispo County line. The fort originally comprised 80,937 ha 800 km2, but even at its present size of 67,987 ha 668 km2, it is the largest United States Army Reserve command post. Yellow starthistle is one of the most serious weed problems on Fort Hunter Liggett. The invasive plant was introduced into California in the 1870s but did not become a significant weed until the 1960s. Three factors contributed to its spread extensive road building, increased suburban development, and expansion of the ranching industry DiTomaso et al. 2006. Over the past 40 years, mainly through human activities, the noxious weed has spread into rangelands, native grasslands, orchards, vineyards, pastures, roadsides, and wasteland areas. Today the weed infests approximately 14 million acres in California alone DiTomaso et al. 2006. As of 1999, yellow starthistle had infested 8,094 ha or 12 percent of Fort Hunter Liggett. Today, acreage estimates on the installation exceed 9,308 ha.
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare