6 January 2021
If you’ve launched a boat at Acacia Road these holidays you will have noticed the new boat inspection bay.
The bay was completed just prior to Christmas as the latest piece of the carpark and facility upgrades undertaken by Rotorua Lakes Council, and is part of a joint effort between agencies to help stop the spread of aquatic pests.
A simple design but helpful for boaties as they enter and exit Lake Ōkareka. People can easily stop and check their boat or equipment before they head off. The checking station is an initial measure that lake users can take to help stop the spread of aquatic pests such as catfish. It’s still important to do a thorough check, clean, drain and dry boats and equipment before using them in another waterway.
Lake Ōkareka lakeside reserve upgrade background information:
Here’s some information and helpful tips from Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s website:
Bay of Plenty Regional Council have working together with Te Arawa Lakes Trust and other agencies on a population control programme after Brown Bullhead Catfish which were found in Lake Rotoiti in March 2016 and then in Lake Rotorua in December 2018.
Catfish are a pest fish which prey on taonga species such as koura and decrease water quality by stirring sediment. Catfish are prolific breeders and to date, population estimates indicate at least 186,000 fish in Lake Rotoiti. Catfish are indiscriminate eaters and prey on most species, contributing to the decline of native species in Lakes Rotoiti and Rotorua.
New rules for boat ramp users
The Bay of Plenty Regional Pest Management Plan 2020 – 2030 became operative on 20th December 2020. As a result new rules now apply for all users of freshwater boat ramps in the region.
Bay of Plenty Regional Council Regional Pest Management Plan 2020 – 2030 Rule 7:
- No person shall leave boat trailers in any water body other than for the purposes of launching and/or retrieving boats.
- No person shall transport ballast water from any water body to any other location.
- All occupiers of vessels or craft entering any water body within the Bay of Plenty shall ensure their vessels or craft (including trailers) are free from freshwater pest fish and freshwater pest plants including fragments.
- All occupiers of vessels or craft using a boat ramp with a self-certification checkpoint must complete the supplied certification form and display it in the vehicle used to launch the boat
How to Check, Clean, Dry
If you’re moving between waterways you can help to reduce the spread of freshwater pests by using the 'Check, Clean, Dry' (CCD) method:
- Check all equipment and your vessel and trailer and remove any weed fragments before leaving the boat ramp.
- Clean all equipment that has come in contact with the water using a decontamination solution* as soon as practical
- Drain all water by removing bungs or sponging out any lying water in your vessel when you exit the waterbody.
- Dry equipment thoroughly before using it another waterbody.
Do it between every waterway, every time.