Invasive Seaweed off Almuñécar

ALM Invasive SeaweedReaders will remember that a couple of months back Motril fishermen discovered an invasive species of Asian seaweed in their fishing grounds – now it has appeared off Almuñécar.

Until recently, it had only been reported along the coast towards the Atlantic, where it has been causing problems, but now it has been confirmed to be present on the Costa Tropical, as well.

Marine experts at the Universidad de Granada (UGR) have been warning that measures must be taken if this menace is to be prevented from taking hold along our coastline.

The measures include somewhere where fishermen can dump the seaweed on land for disposal rather than tipping it back into the sea when it comes up in their nets.

This species of Asian seaweed need sunlight to exist but where it was originally found was around the 200 metre mark, where it would have eventually died from a lack of sunlight. The problem is that if it is thrown back, wind and current could take it to shallower water where it can take root and survive; hence the necessity to hook it out of the water and dispose of it on land.

However, the biggest problem is that many of the smaller fishing boats that come across it don’t have the space to store it onboard, so to ask them to sacrifice storage for the normal catch to accommodate the seaweed isn’t going to work, perhaps.

About a week ago, however, it was reported that the relevant administrations are moving very slowly and that it would take at least another couple of months before some necessary measures could be taken.

(News: Almunecar, Costa Tropical, Granada, Andalucia)

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