Major marine milestone for the Prom

Tuesday 21 July, 2020

Parks Victoria Marine Rangers are pleased that it has been more than 22 months since a Northern Pacific Seastar, Asterias amurensis, has been detected following completion of a recent monitoring program.
Since the invasive Northern Pacific Seastar was first discovered at Wilsons Promontory National Park in 2012, Marine Rangers have partnered with other research organisations to undertake intensive removal as well as density monitoring surveys in Tidal River. 
Swift action and sound marine management practices have resulted in an extensive decline in the Northern Pacific Seastar population at Wilsons Promontory National Park.
Parks Victoria is advising visitors utilising non-powered watercraft such as kayaks, paddle boards and boat users to remain vigilant to ensure all the hard work in removing the notorious pest is not futile.
Visitors are reminded to adopt the Check, Clean, Dry process:
• Check your equipment (including kayak, snorkels, water play equipment) for any pests
• Clean equipment with fresh water to eliminate any marine pests you cannot see
• Dry boats and marine equipment thoroughly before moving to a new marine location
Visitors are also reminded of current restrictions for metropolitan Melbourne and the Shire of Mitchell. For people living outside these areas and travelling to Wilsons Promontory National Park, you must stay safe by washing hands regularly, keeping physical distance between yourself and others, and staying home feeling unwell.

Quotes attributed to Parks Victoria, Marine Ranger – Cassidy Mackenzie:

“The Northern Pacific Seastar can significantly impact a marine ecosystem by consuming native marine life - it is critical that we remove any that are found. So far, we have made a commitment to this but the threat of new incursions still persists.”
“The Northern Pacific Seastar program has been a high priority in accordance with the Parks Conservation Action Plan.”



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