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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
Picture of a Northern Pacific seastar, which is a persistent and destructive marine pest

​The Northern Pacific seastar is a persistent and destructive marine pest. Image CSIRO

Monday 6 February 2017

Watch out for watery invaders

​If you are out and about boating, swimming, diving, snorkelling, fishing, beachcombing or just sightseeing at the coast this summer, keep an eye out for marine species that could become pests.

Marine pests and diseases are a threat to WA’s coastal ecosystem as well as the tourism, aquaculture and fishing industries, but you can be part of our early warning system.

We work to identify pests and diseases to manage and control outbreaks, and your sightings are important to our success; the sooner a pest is spotted, the better our chances of eradicating it before it can spread.

Biosecurity Alerts are available for aquatic pests regarded as particularly serious threats. On the most-wanted list of species that pose a serious threat are Asian paddle crabs, European green crabs, Japanese kelp, Northern Pacific seastars, Asian green mussels and European fan worms.

All these species are capable of outcompeting or preying on local native marine animals and plants, and can be very difficult and expensive to eradicate if they get established.

If you think you have found or seen a pest, please report it to FishWatch on 1800 815 507, through the free WA PestWatch app, or WA PestWatch on our website.

For information about marine pests and identification images see the Australian Government’s marine pest identification cards.

Last modified: 7/02/2017 2:15 PM

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The information and advice provided by the Department of Fisheries website is made in good faith and is from sources believed to be reliable and accurate at the time of release onto the website. Changes in circumstances after a document is placed on the website may affect the accuracy of the information. Full disclaimer details are available at www.fish.wa.gov.au.