Chatham Islands Biosecurity and Quarantine Project
Throughout 2005-2006 a biosecurity and quarantine strategy was developed and delivered by Target Pest to help prevent pests reaching and establishing on the Chatham Islands.
The Chathams are ‘working’ islands with established communities. Access is not regulated or restricted and day to day life involves the movement of goods, livestock and people as would be the case with any other rural area of New Zealand. A key difference however is that the Chatham Islands are free of many pests.
The physical connections between the Chathams and New Zealand provide risk pathways by which pests could transfer to the islands. By targeting these connections a wide range of pest organisms can be managed using a suite of biosecurity and quarantine measures.
Freight companies and shippers to the Chathams have been provided with biosecurity awareness training and simple
quarantine measures installed at ports of loading. Risk site surveillance on the Chathams has so far detected at least one ‘new to the Chathams’ pathogen on an endemic tree species and possibly two other new to science insects.
It is intended to consolidate this programme over the coming year and also to make a start on tackling some of the larger issues around marine biosecurity.
See also issue 69 Biosecurity magazine.