Spreading the message to protect Canterbury waterways this summer

Canterbury has an abundance of beautiful waterways that are under increasing threat from aquatic weeds. Play your part to protect our waterways and Check, Clean, Dry.

Even if you’ve been visiting a pristine swimming spot for years, if someone kayaks in a nearby lake and doesn’t check their equipment for aquatic weeds before moving to your usual spot, in the future you may have to swim with weeds getting tangled around your body or gear.

Aquatic weeds not only affect our enjoyment and safety out on the water, but ruin valuable ecosystems by inhibiting growth of native water plants and reducing likely spawning areas for many types of fish.

While many of our lakes and rivers remain pest-free in Canterbury, to keep it this way, everybody needs to do their bit and Check, Clean, Dry (CCD) when moving between waterways this summer.

Meet our Advocates spreading the CCD message

This summer Environment Canterbury, the regional lead for the national CCD programme, has two Freshwater Biosecurity Advocates working across the region.

Alison Spera and Cameron Caudwell will work through the busy Christmas period at popular holiday spots across Canterbury to speak with freshwater users about what they can do to stop the spread of pests and adopt CCD behaviour.

This will be done primarily through waterside discussions with the public, but there will also be information available at outdoor retailers and local businesses. Alison will be covering the central and northern Canterbury region, and Cameron will be based in Twizel to cover south Canterbury.

If you see Alison and Cameron by the water this summer, please stop and say hi!

Freshwater Biosecurity Advocates Alison Spera.

Freshwater Biosecurity Advocate Alison Spera.

Freshwater Biosecurity Advocates Cameron Caudwell.

Freshwater Biosecurity Advocate Cameron Caudwell.

Play your part

Some high-risk species are microscopic: so even if you can’t see it, if it’s wet, it’s a threat!

If you are moving between waterways you must:

Check: Remove any plant matter from gear that has been in contact with water

Clean: Soak or spray down gear with a 10% detergent solution. A small spray bottle is light and easy to use when on the go!

Dry: If cleaning is not an option, wait until equipment is dry to the touch before entering another waterway.

Look after your own gear and equipment and remind others about the need to CCD as well. People are usually happy to undertake the necessary steps to CCD if they understand what’s at stake, and if they receive a friendly reminder.

Visit our Check, Clean, Dry for more information about what you can do to help stop the spread of animal and plan pests this summer, and a list of aquatic pests to look out for in Canterbury.

If you’re interested in helping out with the CCD programme or would like any further information, you can email checkcleandry@ecan.govt.nz.