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Landowners and occupiers are responsible for preventing the spread of 5 injurious weeds. This is to prevent them causing injury. The weeds included in the Weeds Act 1959 are:

  • common ragwort (Senecio jacobaea)
  • curled dock (Rumex crispus)
  • broad-leaved dock (Rumex obtusifolius)
  • spear thistle (Cirsium vulgare)
  • creeping or field thistle (Cirsium arvense)

If landowners and occupiers do not control harmful injurious weeds, we may take action. This action would require them to prevent the weeds spreading. If you have concerns about an infestation of any of these weeds, you may make a complaint. Use the Injurious weeds: complaint form.

The Rural Inspectorate in Wales (RIW) gives priority to investigating complaints:

  •  where there is a risk of injurious (harmful) weeds spreading to:
    • land used for grazing horses or livestock and
    • land used for forage production

These weeds are all native species which support many pollinator species and are only injurious under certain circumstances.

Ragwort is the most commonly reported weed. The Code of practice on ragwort includes advice for landowners and occupiers. This is to help prevent and control the spread of ragwort where it is a threat to the health and welfare of grazing animals. Particularly horses and cattle.