HBCC 50 year celebration 16 November 2024, mark your calendar now!
Didymo (Didymosphenia geminata) is an invasive fresh-water algae, and a pest in several South Island Rivers. It has highlighted the threat that aquatic pests may pose and the huge impact they can have (and are already having) on river systems and paddling.Why do I need to clean my gear?One drop of water containing a tiny but highly infectious didymo cell could spoil another river. Potenially, a drop falling off a boat being transported on a car/ trailer could infect a healthy river.What do I have to do?Check - Clean - Dry NZRCA Didymo flyervisit: CLICK HERE and CLICK HERECheck: Remove any Didymo matter from your kayak and gear (throw this on land away from river).Clean: Put 10 or 20 litres of water in a tub (try the one you carry wet gear in).Mix in 5% of household disinfectant.10 litre tub: use 2 large cups (500ml)20 litre tub: use 4 large cups (1 litre)Drain boats and squeeze water out of wet gear asthoroughly as possible.Soak all gear in the tub for at least a minute, squeezeexcess solution back into the tub.Pour remaining solution into kayak, slosh around to wet the entire inside (try toget spillage from cockpit back into the tub or next kayak).Drain from first kayak into the next and so on until insides of all boats are wettedwith solution.Use remaining solution to sponge down the outside of kayaks and paddles.Dispose of excess solution well away from river and if you have to rinse gear doso in tap water not the river water.cleaning gearDry: If possible, leave your boat and gear to dry as an extra precaution. If you don't clean your gear you must dry all of it thoroughly and then keep it dry another 48 hours. Given the difficulty of completely drying wetsuit booties and other equipment, cleaning is preferred.TIPSBuy disinfectant from a supermarket for about $2 for a two litre bottle. If youuse 500ml it will cost you about 50 cents every time you clean your gear. Asmall price to pay to protect our rivers!Make a mark with a felt pen on the side of the washing tub to show the requiredwater level for future treatments.It's a good idea to mark 250 ml and 500ml on an old plastic bottle (e.g. cleanone litre milk bottle) and use this to measure disinfectant.Dial 0800 809 966 to report suspected new finds of Didymo or for more information.