A disease is currently causing abalone deaths along Victoria’s southwest coast. Abalone are important grazing animals on rocky reef communities. Loss of abalone due to the virus may have serious ecological consequences. The disease has no known or likely impacts for human health.
You can make a difference and help minimise the spread of this disease by:
- Washing vessels, wetsuits, snorkelling/diving equipment and your hands in soapy fresh water
- Removing all marine organic matter from vessels and equipment
- Disposing of abalone shell and meat with your household waste and not using gut as fishing bait.
Abalone virus can easily spread to new areas by using equipment or vessels that have not been properly cleaned or disinfected, especially when coming from infected areas. These biosecurity measures are particularly important if you have been fishing or diving in southwest waters recently.