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Criticism of aquatic biosecurity misinformed

Hon Jim Sutton

Minister of Agriculture, Minister for Biosecurity, Minister for Trade Negotiations, and Associate Minister for Rural Affairs

7 October 2005

Criticism of aquatic biosecurity misinformed

There has been huge investment in aquatic biosecurity in the past two years, an area previous governments had never tackled, Biosecurity Minister Jim Sutton said today.

Mr Sutton said it seemed likely the didymo incursion had been in New Zealand for up to five years before it was reported, and had spread widely in that time. There is no known way to eradicate it.

"Because didymo is microscopic, it hasn't been noticed till it started blooming and obvious algal mats formed.

"No-one in the world has attempted to eradicate or control didymo, and there have been no successful eradications of sea squirt. New Zealand officials and scientists are working from scratch to come up with feasible solutions."


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