BIOSECURITY – Help Protect South Georgia
After habitat restoration projects to remove invasive species such as reindeer, rats, mice and weeds, South Georgia is one of the most pristine environments in the world. Practicing thorough biosecurity is the single most important thing you can do to protect South Georgia.
Click here to download the most recent version of our Biosecurity Handbook [.pdf] – the one-stop-shop for all of our biosecurity policy & procedures.
Visiting South Georgia? Read on…
Non-native species can spread to South Georgia, or move between different parts of South Georgia as a result of our activities. Seeds, microorganisms, and even insects can hitchhike on footwear, attached to clothing, or in bags that have been used in the outdoors previously. By following a few simple steps, you can help prevent this.
Before leaving home
Ideally, it’s best to buy new outdoor clothing and equipment for your trip to South Georgia. This ensures it’s perfectly clean from seeds, soil and insects. Choose equipment which is easy to clean and biosecure. Where possible avoid:
- Velcro. It holds on to seeds and dirt and is really hard to clean.
- Mesh. Some backpacks have breathable mesh back liners, mesh water bottle holders, and mesh is sometimes used in a breathable layer in waterproof trousers. Seeds get stuck in the mesh and they are really hard to remove.
- Narrow boot treads. The more ‘open’ the treads on the soles of your boots the less likely they are to become clogged with soil and dirt, and the easier they are to clean.
If you already have outdoor clothing and equipment you’d like to bring, examine and clean clothes, footwear, and bags thoroughly. Examine and clean all clothing, including pockets, seams, Velcro fasteners, and footwear soles for dirt and organic material. Use a vacuum cleaner, brushes, and water where necessary to ensure all seeds and dirt have been removed.
Download our guide here [.pdf, 8mb]
It’s important to repeat the biosecurity checks and cleaning before and after every shore landing. This ensures that you don’t accidentally spread invasive species and wildlife diseases between sites, and helps make your visit truly sustainable.
By practicing thorough biosecurity you have played your part in protecting South Georgia.