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Operation Waiheke Advisory 2

Operation Waiheke Advisory 2

Actions related to the claimed release of Foot and Mouth Disease on Waiheke Island continue to take place.

Although the claim, received in a letter to the Prime Minister today, is believed to be a hoax, it is being taken seriously because of the potential impacts on the New Zealand economy.

At 5pm (Tuesday) a Controlled Area notice for Waiheke Island became effective. This outlines the restrictions in place. Details of these restrictions are included at the end of this media advisory.

In addition, two exotic disease inspectors are now on Waiheke Island, and will be joined tomorrow by vets as the task of livestock inspections gets under way. MAF media liaison staff will be on the island. Contact Tina Nixon on 027 223 2789.

This evening efforts are under way to inform every Waiheke Island farmer with susceptible livestock of the situation, and a public meeting to discuss the situation is planned on the island tomorrow. Details of a time and venue will be advised by another media advisory when these are available.

MAF wishes to reiterate that this situation is believed to be a hoax, but must be taken seriously.

Foot and Mouth Disease is an unwanted organism under the Biosecurity Act 1993, and as such, anyone convicted of spreading it faces a penalty of up to five years’ imprisonment or a fine up to $100,000.

Due to the serious potential impacts on the New Zealand economy, people should remain vigilant for suspicious behaviour. Anyone with information on the claimed release should contact their local police station.

This is the last information that will be released by MAF this evening. There will be a press conference at MAF, 101-103 The Terrace, at 6am on Wednesday morning.

The information outlined in the Controlled Area notice follows for your information.
Controlled Area Notice under the Biosecurity Act 1993.

Section 131 – Controlled Area, Movement Controls and Procedures in Respect of Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) – Waiheke Island and Surrounding Area The area of land of the island in the Hauraki Gulf of New Zealand known as Waiheke Island and all small islands and sea contained within 500 metres from the Waiheke Island low water mark is declared a controlled area to limit any potential spread of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) – an unwanted organism under the Biosecurity Act 1993. This Notice takes effect at 17:00 from 10 May 2005 until further notice.

Notice of Movement Controls Under section 131(3)(a) of the Biosecurity Act 1993, movement of the following animals and items which might potentially spread FMD is PROHIBITED into, out or inside the Controlled Area, whether domestic or feral animals and whether live, dead or genetic material.

This includes: Pigs (all members of family Suidae) Camels, dromedaries, llamas, vicunas, alpacas (all members of family Camelidae) Cattle, sheep, goats, zebus, buffaloes, yaks (all members of family Bovidae) Deer (all members of family Cervidae) Any soil, hay, animal feeds, equipment, utensils, effluent, conveyances, vehicles, waste, or rejected matter, or other goods that may have been in contact with any animal described above Any clothing and/or footwear worn while working with any animal described in a) above.

Notice of Compulsory Treatment and Procedures Under section 131(3)(b) of the Biosecurity Act 1993, all risk organisms, organic material, risk goods, or other goods within the Controlled Area must be subject to such treatment and procedures Animal products (meat, milk, by-products) from animals listed above that are intended to be fed to pigs in the Controlled Area must be treated to inactivate FMD virus by cooking or pasteurisation.

Any person who wishes to obtain the permission of an inspector or authorised person to carry out a movement that would otherwise be prohibited or to obtain an exemption from an inspector or authorised person should call 0800 80 99 66.

NOTES TO REPORTERS: Domestic pets such as cats and dogs, or any other animal not listed above are not a risk of spreading FMD or of spreading it. Any parts of any animal for use as food can be moved into and inside the Controlled Area, but NOT out of it. This is to allow the continued provision of foodstuffs for residents in the Controlled Area. FMD presents no risk to humans.

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