Hawaii Ferry Between Oahu to Maui

Hawaii Superferry

Why Prevent the Spread of Invasive Species

What are Invasive Species?
Invasive species are plants, bugs, and animals that were introduced to Hawai‘i from somewhere else and cause environmental, economic, and health problems. Each Hawaiian island is home to plants, animals, and fish that exist nowhere else on earth. Invasive species threaten these natural wonders. They crowd out our native plants, prey on our unique birdlife, and take food away from our fish.

Invasive species are not just an environmental issue. Agricultural pests and stinging insects threaten our economy, public health and quality of life.

What’s with all the washing? Why do I need to wash my car before bringing it on the Superferry?
Weed seeds and bug invaders hitchhike in the mud and dirt caked on your car. When they fall off on the island you are visiting, you might introduce a new pest to that island.

For example, a fire-starting weed called fountain grass has traveled from the Big Island to Maui in the tires of vehicles. Prevention is always easier and cheaper than managing a weed after it has escaped. Washing your car today can save us all from cleanup costs later!

What about washing snorkeling and diving gear?
Alien algae that smother our coral reefs reproduce from pieces that break off from the main plant. It takes only a small fragment of alien algae to start a new infestation. If you don’t wash your gear, alien algae could spread, disrupting our coral reef ecosystems and cluttering our pristine beaches.

And hiking and hunting gear?
Seeds and bugs hitchhike in the mud caked on your hiking and hunting gear. In the past, weeds that took enormous effort to eradicate have hitchhiked on shoes and clothing and infested new areas.

Why do my plants need to be inspected?
There are two reasons your plant needs to be inspected. Your plant could have a disease or an insect pest that you cannot see or the plants themselves may be weeds. You could introduce a stinging fire ant, an agricultural pest, or a new weed to an island without even knowing it. Inspections prevent the movement of invasive species and can save millions of dollars in crop damage and cleanup costs.

Will it really do any good?
Washing your car, boots, and diving gear is a great way to mālama (care for) our island home. Every seed, bug, and algae that isn’t spread preserves our natural wonders and way of life for future generations.

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