prickly pear

Opuntia elata
Succulent
Alternate
Cladode
Orange
Green

Biosecurity Queensland must be contacted within 24 hours 13 25 23.
Biosecurity Queensland Must attend site before any control measure is administered, advice will be provided to the land holder at this time.

Common names 
Also known as: Riverina pear, Orange tuna,
Family 
CACTACEAE
Deciduous 
No
Flowering time 
Mid Spring
Native/Exotic 
Exotic
Origin 
South America
Notifiable 
Yes
State declaration 
Category 2,3,4,5 - Must be reported to Biosecurity inspector or authorised person. Must not be distributed, moved, possessed or kept under your control.
Council declaration 
As per State Declaration
Known distribution 

Records of this plant occurring in South Western Queensland

Habitat 

Species are found throughout all Australian states and territories, growing across varied soil types in areas that receive above 150mm of rainfall annually. The majority are drought-resistant and hardy. Many species were deliberately introduced as food, fodder, ornamentals and for the former cochineal industry.

Habit 

Much-branched shrubby succulent plant and in time can reach 3 metres height and spread, although 1-1.5 metres is more of the common size

Biosecurity Queensland Must attend site before any control measure is administered, advise will be provided to the land holder at this time.

• spines can cause serious injury to humans, stock and native animals
• can form large stands that harbour feral animals
• limits access for mustering and recreational activities
• spines can contaminate wool and hides
• infestations can reduce or prevent grazing activities, reducing productivity.

Stem and leaves 

Branched shrub with erect branches to 2 m tall. Spines absent or 1–3 short spines, whitish yellow present at some areoles. Stem segments are glossy green, sometimes with a purple tinge (especially around the areoles and margins). Often more than 2 cm thick, 5–25 cm long.

Flowers and fruits 

Flowers are orange, 3–4 cm wide. Fruit club shaped, up to 6 cm long, purplish red.

Reproduction and dispersal 

Seed and vegatively

Similar species 

OPUNTIA STRICTA