Invasive Species Week: Why rowers need to Check, Clean, Dry

GB rower and graduate in biology, Sara Parfett shares her advice on how rowers can support Invasive Species Week

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(c) Drew Smith

This week is Invasive Species Week, and British Rowing is supporting this campaign to raise awareness about non-native species affecting the ecosystems that rowers enjoy.

An invasive species is a non-native biological organism, and its introduction can impact British plants, animals and their environment. Sometimes they can help native organisms, but they can also devastate entire ecosystems.

As rowers, we spend most of our time on the water (or occasionally in, if you’re unlucky!), therefore it is our responsibility to check our equipment and clothing to make sure we don’t spread non-native invasive species.

To help protect the water sports we love, we can follow three simple steps when leaving the water:

Check – our equipment and clothing for live organisms
Clean – and wash all equipment and clothing thoroughly
Dry – all equipment and clothing, as some species can live for many days in moist conditions.

By following these simple steps, not only will you help protect the environment, but a clean boat is also a speedy boat for racing season!

With Easter camps and the summer racing season coming up, your boats will be travelling across the country and even across the continent to warmer climates. So make sure you follow the three simple steps; Check, Clean, Dry to ensure you don’t bring any unwanted hitch hikers back to your home water.

If you want to learn more visit the GB non-native species secretariat website.