Shellfish biotoxin alerts

Do not collect or eat shellfish from areas where shellfish biotoxin warnings have been issued. All warnings for New Zealand are in this section and up to date.

All warnings are up to date

We review the warnings on this page following sampling, and update it when we find toxic shellfish.

If you have questions, email

Current warnings

There are no current warnings.

Previous changes
  • 16 June 2021: Hawke Bay warning removed
  • 12 November 2020: West Coast – Waipapakauri to Kaipara warning removed
  • 6 November 2020: West Coast – South Head to Tirua Point (south of Kawhia) warning removed
  • 2 October 2020: Hawke's Bay warning removed

Public warnings about toxic shellfish

We test shellfish and seawater for toxic algae every week from popular shellfish gathering areas around New Zealand. If the shellfish are not safe to eat, we issue public health warnings and put up signs at affected beaches.

If you get sick after eating shellfish

If someone gets sick after eating shellfish, make sure you:

  • phone Healthline for advice on 0800 61 11 16, or get medical help immediately
  • advise your nearest public health unit
  • keep any leftover shellfish in case it can be tested.

Safety of commercially sold shellfish

The warnings on this page are only for recreational shellfish that people can collect themselves. The warnings do not apply to shellfish that you can buy from shops or supermarkets, or shellfish for export.

We have strict water and flesh monitoring programmes for commercial shellfish to ensure it's safe to eat. If commercial shellfish become toxic, the shellfish cannot be harvested or sold, and the growing areas are closed.

Find out more

Who to contact

If you have questions about the information on this page, email


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