Biosecurity messages are lost in translation to citizens: Implications for devolving management to citizens
journal contributionposted on 2017-04-12, 00:00 authored by Marnie CampbellMarnie Campbell, D E P Bryant, C L Hewitt
The increasing focus of marine biosecurity agencies on transferring management responsibilities to citizens and industry begs the question whether devolved responsibility is a viable option for creating biosecurity outcomes. We examined recreational marine users' selfdeclared awareness of non-indigenous marine species (NIMS) at six locations in Tasmania, Australia and evaluated the accuracy of their awareness through recognition of four wellknown NIMS with active awareness campaigns. We also investigated whether the activities of recreational marine users influence the accuracy of their NIMS recognition skills. We generally found that respondents declare NIMS awareness (70.45%), yet we found their recognition accuracy was variable ranging from low to fair (<10% to 54.95%) and recreational activity did not influence accuracy. Based on our results, we conclude that marine users' awareness does not predict accuracy and therefore devolved management of biosecurity without additional resources may pose a risky biosecurity management strategy.