The non-native killer shrimp, which arrived in the UK from Europe in 2010, has been confirmed in the Trinity Broads by Norfolk Wildlife Trust.
Situated north-west of Great Yarmouth, the Trinity Broads
make up 14% of the open water within the Broads. They are owned by Essex & Suffolk Water and managed in partnership with Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Broads Authority, Natural England and Environment Agency.
Killer shrimp is so called due to its voracious habits: eating or killing any of our native invertebrates small enough to be prey. Growing to 3cm long, adults will feed on fish eggs and fry as well.
So far it has only spread in the top section of Rollesby Broad and in Ormesby Broad. NWT believes there is an opportunity to try and keep it out of Ormesby Little and Filby Broad.
Eilish Rothney, Trinity Broads warden said “As the Trinity Broads are a lake system separate from the main broads, it is likely that killer shrimp has arrived by recreational activity. This non-native species could have a profound effect on the ecology of the Trinity Broads lakes. We are working with our stakeholders at present to reduce or prevent any boat movements between the infected area and the rest of the system.
“We have been greatly encouraged by the willingness of the boaters and anglers to work with us on this. So this is a huge appeal to the public: if you take part in any water activities you must check clean and dry all your boats, equipment and clothing before and after visiting any water body.”
Senior Conservation Advisor at Essex & Suffolk Water, Helen Jacobs said, “Identifying, and where possible managing, invasive non-native species such as this killer shrimp is a key aim for us at Essex & Suffolk Water. We are working with partners and investing in facilities to try and prevent the further spread of this damaging species.”