In response to a confirmed outbreaks of Crayfish Plague in the River Clare and the River Maigue, biosecurity measures are needed to help prevent its spread.
Crayfish Plague is a disease that kills our native White-clawed Crayfish. All crayfish that become infected will die. Crayfish Plague is easily transmitted in water or via contaminated equipment (for example on canoes, waders or nets).
Ireland holds the largest population of the White-clawed Crayfish that remains in Europe.
Help Protect our Native Crayfish from this Disease
All water users are asked to take all reasonable precautions to prevent the spread of this disease to other rivers. Please make sure to clean, disinfect and dry your gear thoroughly (tackle, boots, waders, nets etc) before moving to another water.
Check Clean Dry
Anyone using the river is being urged to observe the Check, Clean and Dry protocol. All wet gear should be checked for any silt or mud, plant material or animals. It then should be cleaned and finally dried. Disinfectant or hot water (over 60⁰C) should be used to clean all equipment followed by a 24hr drying period. This should be adopted as standard practice in all freshwaters. Drying is especially important, including removing of any water from inside a boat and disposing of it on grass. A drying period of at least 24 hours is needed to ensure that a boat is clear of infectious organism.
People are also asked to alert the authorities of any mass mortality of crayfish or sightings of unusual crayfish that might be non-native species (e.g. crayfish with red claws, large size).
The NPWS have recently confirmed the presence of non native crayfish in Irish waters. Your vigilance is required.
Members of the public who suspect they have seen a non-native species of crayfish are asked to take a picture of it showing the underside of the claws and submit this through http://invasivespeciesireland.com/alien-watch/ or direct to Colette Flynn (email: [email protected]) Phone: 051 306248