Advisory – No Sea Squirt detected in Whakatane

19 December 2005

Biosecurity New Zealand's surveillance of high risk locations for the presence of the sea squirt, Styela clava, has not detected its presence in Whakatane.

Marine structures in the area were inspected late last week and no sea squirt were detected.

Whakatane was initially examined earlier in the month, but the visibility at the time was too poor to make any accurate inspection, and the inspection was re-scheduled.

The Whakatane inspection ends Biosecurity New Zealand's surveillance programme of 24 high-risk locations for the presence of the organism.  The locations were categorised as high-risk because of their proximity to known infested areas, their volume of vessel movements or their closeness to areas of economic or cultural significance.

The sea squirt is present throughout the Hauraki Gulf, at Tutukaka in Northland, at Lyttelton Port and in one marina in Lyttelton Harbour.

Biosecurity New Zealand is undertaking a comprehensive public awareness campaign over the summer, encouraging boaties and other marine users to help prevent the spread of the sea squirt.  The sea squirt can be spread on fouled boat hulls, and the agency is asking boaties to ensure their boat hulls are clean and regularly anti-fouled.

Biosecurity New Zealand continues to ask people to report any suspected finds of the sea squirt to its free 0800 number: 0800 80 99 66.

Detailed information about the sea squirt, including pictures, can be found at:

For further information, please contact:
Lesley Patston
Senior Communications Adviser
Tel: 027 2051418



Last Updated: 28 September 2010

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