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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries

Recreational vessels

​All vessels travelling to, from and within Western Australia’s waters, regardless of their size or frequency of visits, pose a risk to the state’s aquatic environment.

To help prevent the spread of marine pests to our aquatic environment, recreational vessel owners bringing vessels into WA waters are urged to follow our CLEAN vessel policy.

These simple steps have been developed to help recreational boat owners reduce the risk of spreading marine pests and will also provide benefits such as improved vessel performance, lower fuel consumption and reduced maintenance costs. These steps include:

  • inspecting and cleaning topside gear;
  • checking your vessel is clean by regular inspection of the hull and niche areas;
  • keeping vessel hull fouling to a slime layer only;
  • cleaning and drying all fishing, diving and immersible gear;
  • making sure antifouling paint is suitable for the vessel and renewed regularly; and
  • treating or pumping out all sea water before travel, in an appropriate area or in deep water far away from land.

You can also consult the national guidelines for managing biofouling on recreational vessels.

Vessel skippers found bringing marine pests into WA waters may be in breach of the Fish Resources Management Act 1994 and regulations made under the Act.


The invasive marine pest, Japanese kelp, fouling the hull of a boat on a hoist in Wellington, New Zealand.
Image: Lesley Patston, MPI NZ.

Keep an eye out for new and unusual species in your area.

If you think you have found or seen a marine pest, please contact our FishWatch 24-hour hotline on 1800 815 507, or report it using the WA PestWatch app.

Last modified: 5/10/2016 11:37 AM

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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.