Monday, May 22, 2017

Reiteration of Crayfish Plague warning

All water users are being urged by the EPA Catchment Unit to take precautions after confirmation of an outbreak of Crayfish Plague on a stretch of the River Suir downstream of Clonmel to Carrick-on-Suir.

It comes after large numbers of dead freshwater crayfish were reported on the river earlier this month. DNA analysis has now confirmed that the cause of death was crayfish plague.

Anyone using the river is being urged to observe the ‘Check, Clean and Dry’ protocol once they leave the river and before using it again.

This means that all wet gear (boats, clothing and equipment) should be checked for any silt or mud, plant material or animals before being cleaned and finally dried. Disinfectant or hot water (over 40 degrees Celsius) should be used to clean all equipment and this should be followed by a 24 hour drying period.

The drying period is especially important in ensuring that all equipment is clear of infectious organism, including the removal of any water inside the boat. The crayfish plague organism can be carried on wet equipment to new sites and containment of the outbreak is essential to prevent spread to other unaffected populations in Ireland.

(ED NOTE: This is especially of interest to Kilcullen, as we have a very healthy crayfish population, shown by last Saturday's demonstration and talk on Life in the Liffey given by Dr Jan Baars. Users of varied waterways should comply with the directions to make sure the Plague doesn't spread to here. )