Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome (POMS) - Hawkesbury River, Botany Bay and Port Jackson Estuaries
Last update: 26 February 2013
NSW authorities are investigating a recent mortality of Pacific Oysters in Hawkesbury River. It has been confirmed that the mortality has been caused by Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome (POMS).
Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome has previously caused mortalities of Pacific Oysters in Georges River and Port Jackson in 2010 and 2011.Investigations have confirmed the presence of a virus affecting Pacific Oysters in these estuaries. Sydney Rock Oysters are not affected by this virus.
Farmed and wild Pacific Oysters in the Hawkesbury River, Georges River, Botany Bay have been impacted and precautionary controls have been put in place to prevent movements of oysters and oyster farming equipment from these estuaries to any other NSW river.
NSW Health advises there is no risk to human health associated with this event.
Australia’s biosecurity and quality-control regimes, both on imported and locally grown products, are designed to ensure that consumer products are high quality and safe to eat.
What can you do to prevent the spread of POMS to other oyster growing estuaries
If boating or fishing in the Hawkesbury River, Georges River or Port Jackson and you intend to move to another estuary:
- Ensure that fishing gear or other equipment are free of any oysters/sediment/ biofouling;
- Drain all water from your boat and gear;
- Use car/truck wash to rinse gear and equipment, boats (inside and out) and trailers and then air dry; and
- Flush outboard engines.
- Factsheet - POMS: Oyster Equipment Movement Protocol 100Kb
See also ...
- Position statement to industry on POMS research as at August 2013 [PDF 200kB]
- POMS Industry Study Tour to France (www.oystertour.wordpress.com)
- FRDC/Sydney University POMS Field Monitoring Project (www.oysterhealthsydney.org)