About freshwater pests and diseases
Managing and preventing the spread of invasive freshwater weeds, pests, and diseases is important to protect our native species and local economies.
Freshwater weeds and pests can have significant impacts on:
- commercial fisheries
- water intakes for irrigation and hydropower generation
- drinking water
- recreation and tourism
- loss of native species
- water management costs.
What we're doing about them
We're working with organisations like regional councils, the Department of Conservation Te Papa Atawhai (DOC), Fish & Game New Zealand, Toitū te Whenua Land Information New Zealand, iwi, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), and energy companies to prevent the spread of freshwater pests and diseases.
Through the National Interest Pest Responses (NIPR), we're trying to eradicate highly invasive freshwater pest plants like hydrilla, salvinia, water hyacinth, and phragmites.
Find out about the 9 harmful weeds managed by NIPR programmes
Find out about freshwater pests – DOC
How to report
Report exotic freshwater pests and diseases to the Biosecurity New Zealand hotline 0800 80 99 66 or online at report.mpi.govt.nz
Report regionally managed freshwater pests and diseases to your regional council.
Find out about biosecurity risks in your region – Ko Tātou This Is Us
Possession of invasive freshwater species
You need to apply for permission to possess or knowingly move freshwater species.
For some species, like carp, various aspects are managed by different organisations and you will need to contact more than one organisation for these.
You’ll need to get in touch with:
- Biosecurity New Zealand – for catfish, carp (amur, koi, grass and silver) and pest plants.
Find out how to get permission from Biosecurity New Zealand to handle Unwanted Organisms
- Department of Conservation (DOC) – for carp (amur, koi, grass and silver) rudd, and any noxious species.
Check the rules for possessing freshwater species with DOC
- Fish & Game – for gambusia, rudd, trout, and salmon
Contact your nearest regional Fish & Game team
Freshwater Biosecurity Partnership Programme
The Didymo long-term management plan was established in 2007. In 2016 the plan was formally renamed to the Freshwater Biosecurity Partnership Programme incorporating all freshwater pests.
The programme works to understand and manage regional and national pathways through which significant freshwater pests are spread. This is a partnership programme and is focused on building effective relationships, increasing knowledge about the issues, best practice for management, sharing expertise, and leading the Check, Clean, Dry campaign.
Check, Clean, Dry
The Check, Clean, Dry campaign encourages recreational users of rivers and lakes to check, clean and dry their equipment (including items like wetsuits) and vehicles when moving between waterways to prevent accidental spread of weeds and pests.
Who to contact
If you'd like to learn more about freshwater pests and diseases, email firstname.lastname@example.org