Invasive species to found to North and East of Auckland port
New Zealand has extended containment measures to prevent the spread of an invasive seaweed that could easily carpet the coastline around its main ports in Aukland.
The country’s Ministry for Primary Industries has issued a biosecurity rule preventing vessels from anchoring in waters off Northland, a region North of Auckland, adding to preventative measures already in place around Great Barrier Island, an large island located to the North East of the city.
The authorities are attempting to prevent the spread of two invasive carpet Caulerpa seaweeds. The rules prevent any fishing or other aquatic harvesting.
The authorities have developed a public awareness campaign to make local populations aware of the risks, including how to identify the two invasive species. They say the two species (Caulerpa brachypus and Caulerpa parvifolia) can form vast meadows below the tide line rapidly, over dominating native Caulerpa species and other indigenous marine life.
They are native to the Indo-Pacific region, ranging from Africa to Australia, the Pacific Islands, and southern Japan. Caulerpa brachypus is also considered an invasive pest in Florida, the United States, and Martinique in the Caribbean.
New Zealand has an extremely strong policy towards invasive aquatic species species and has been known to turn excessivly fouled vessels away from its water previously and prevent undweater hull cleaning.