Frequently Asked Questions

Could didymo spread to lakes throughout New Zealand?

Yes. Although didymo prefers a river environment with clear water flowing over stable substrate at depths sufficient for light penetration to drive photosynthesis, blooms have been found in South Island Lakes. Lake Wakatipu, for example, contains visible didymo on some parts of the lake shore.

I have plants in my garden which are on the Accord or being considered for the Accord, will I have to pull them out?

No, you won’t have to pull them out. It is legal to have a plant that is on the Accord list, but it is illegal to sell, propagate or spread it. The agencies and industry groups involved in implementing the Accord work together to make sure that home gardeners receive good information, including the reasons plants have been included on the Accord (ie their environmental impacts).

Why do I have to clean items that have been in contact with water between EVERY river?

Didymo is hard to detect in its microscopic form, so it is invisible in some waterways. People need to treat all waterways as if they might have didymo. People need to Check, Clean, Dry everytime they use a waterway.

What are the requirements for importing wooden fence posts for my farm?

All poles, posts or rounds imported into New Zealand will be inspected on arrival in New Zealand for pests, evidence of pest infestation, or for unwanted organic contamination such as soil or bark.

Poles, posts or rounds found to be contaminated with pests or soil or bark will need to be treated (if you want the items to enter New Zealand), re-shipped (sent back) or destroyed (incinerated). The treatment will depend on the contaminant found (e.g. fumigation for insects or bark, heat treatment for fungi).

Poles, posts or rounds from Pines trees (genus Pinus) that are being imported from areas not considered by Biosecurity New Zealand to be free of Fusarium circinatum (Pine pitch canker), must be heat treated to a core temperature of 70oC for 4 hours.

All treatment or destruction costs will need to be met by the importer.

If you want to be sure of avoiding difficulties on arriving in NZ, make sure that all poles, posts or rounds you bring into New Zealand are either free of pests, bark and soil (dirt), or have been certified treated by one of the methods described in the import health standard.

Does MPI require that I use a pet transport company, or can I do the importing process on my own?

MPI does not require pet importers to use a pet transport company. However, we highly recommend that importers use the services of a registered pet transport company as they are familiar with the protocols and procedures necessary to export pets overseas.

If you do not have a pet exporter we recommend that you contact your airlines directly to inquire about their requirements.

Why do I have to connect through ECN?

ECN also provides a 'link' between industry and the New Zealand Customs Service. They have the experience, relationships and support systems to provide a centralised server and manage the required changes to industry applications, through an agreement with MPI.

When and how will the legislation review take place?

Work on the strategy will support a concurrent review of animal welfare legislation – in particular the Animal Welfare Act 1999. The Act has functioned well to support New Zealand’s animal welfare system to date, but requires review in some areas. Linking the legislation review with the strategy development will help ensure that the legislation fully supports New Zealand’s overarching animal welfare strategy.

What does the painted apple moth look like?

The painted apple moth is recognisable once you know what to look for.

There are five stages in the painted apple moth life cycle -- egg mass, larvae, pre-pupae, pupae (cocoon), and adult moths -- and the pest looks quite different at each stage. The painted apple moth is most distinctive in the larva (caterpillar) stage, when it is brightly coloured, hairy and easily recognised by the tufts of hair on its back. (No native caterpillars are hairy like the painted apple moth.)

What is the life cycle of the Varroa mite?
Image of the Varroa Mites Lifecycle stages
What must I do if I want to bring live plants and cuttings into New Zealand?

You will need an Import Permit.

Biosecurity New Zealand,
Plants and Plant Product Imports,
PO Box 2526,
Phone: +64 4 894 0832
Fax: +64 4 894 0662