Divers from Northland to Gisborne are checking for marine pests this summer in order to prevent the spread of marine pests. An underwater survey the waters around Aotea Great Barrier Island (pictured below) has just been completed.
They are checking for a range of unwanted pests including Mediterranean fan worm, Asian date mussel (Arcuatula senhousia), Australian droplet tunicate (Eudistoma elongatum) clubbed tunicate (Styela clava), and sea squirt (Clavelina oblonga).
In Northland 2,000 vessels will be surveyed and any vessel entering Northland waters or moving from one harbour to another must have no more than ‘light fouling’, defined as a slime layer and/or barnacles and a few patches of macrofouling. If a pest species is detected, owners will be asked to haul the vessels out and clean or treat them in a timeframe appropriate to the level of risk.