Exploring the efficacy of an aquatic invasive species prevention campaign among water recreationists

  • Published source details Seekamp E., McCreary A., Mayer J., Zack S., Charlebois P. & Pasternak L. (2016) Exploring the efficacy of an aquatic invasive species prevention campaign among water recreationists. Biological Invasions, 18, 1745-1758.


Action: Raise public awareness about aquatic habitats

A study in 2013 in Illinois and Indiana, USA (Seekamp et al. 2016) found that recreational water users familiar with an invasive species awareness campaign were more likely to carry out four of six biosecurity behaviours than water users unfamiliar with the campaign. The four behaviours were: dispose unwanted bait/fish scraps in the trash; drain equipment after use; inspect and clean equipment after use; and dry equipment for ≥5 days after use. Familiarity with the campaign had no significant effect on two other behaviours: rinsing equipment with high pressure or hot water. Methods: In summer 2013, a total of 626 anglers and boaters were surveyed on the southern shore of Lake Michigan. Individuals were asked how often they engaged in six aquatic biosecurity behaviours (always, frequently, never, not applicable) and whether they were familiar with the Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers!TM campaign (yes: 56%, no: 44%). The campaign launched in 2002. It involved communicating the six biosecurity behaviours on signs at boat ramps, in fishing regulation publications and on boat registrations – plus general awareness-raising about key aquatic invasive species (e.g. with stickers and brochures).

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