Aquatic Biosecurity Threats
There are many pests and diseases that
could cause serious impacts if introduced to Tasmanian waters. Some examples of aquatic pests and diseases that pose a threat to Tasmania include:
Soft-shell clams (Mya japonica) are a large bivalve marine mollusc and are native to the Northern Hemisphere. Soft-shell clams can grow up to 150 mm and are most commonly found in shallow sub-tidal and intertidal zones. The clams live in sand beds and bury themselves up to 50 cm deep. They use long siphons, which pump water for respiration, feeding and spawning.
- Didymo (Rock Snot) is a freshwater alga not yet present in Australia. It takes just
one cell in a single drop of water to be spread between waterways. The cells
multiply quickly to form massive blooms that completely smother the stream or
lake bed. These algal clumps adversely affect water quality, aquatic
invertebrates and fish stocks, and are a hazard for hydro generation, irrigation
- Abalone Viral Ganglioneuritis (AVG) is a viral disease that affects the nervous system of abalone. The
first reported case in Australia was off the Victorian coast in 2006.
There are also a number of other potential marine pests and invasive freshwater species that have been identified as serious threats to Tasmania.