Managing biofouling is the key to stopping the spread of marine pests

The risk of a non-trading vessel spreading marine pests is greatest when the vessel is:

  • heavily biofouled with organisms such as mussels, oysters, seaweeds and seasquirts
  • has been inactive or operating at low speeds (<5 knots/hr) for extended periods prior to relocating
  • has a worn, aged or ineffective antifouling coating
  • has areas where an antifouling coating hasn’t been applied.

Operators can reduce the risk by incorporating practices that minimise the build up of biofouling into the routine cleaning and maintenance programs of your vessels.

To assist you, the document 'National biofouling management guidance for non-trading vessels' PDF Icon PDF [1.83mb] provides practical recommendations on managing biofouling on hulls and niche areas.

These recommendations have been developed in conjunction with the Australian shipping industry and Ports Australia.

It is an important reference for owners, operators, docking superintendents and maintenance contract managers, particularly in the following circumstances:

  • managing biofouling when operating in Australian waters
  • preparing a vessel prior to arrival in Australia (or any other country) to ensure it is free of marine pests on entry
  • developing maintenance contracts
  • supervising maintenance contractors.

Applying the recommended practices