Biosecurity in Rogaining

Biosecurity in Rogaining  Information for all Rogainers

[July 2018]

Rogaining has always had a keen interest in the farmland and forest that we use for our sport including an acute awareness that we want to leave areas as we found them. We have also adopted an educational role with our members over the decades encouraging Rogainers to understand the countryside and be aware of any issues that our usage might pose.

In 2018 some industry trends meant it was timely to review our practices so that we do not cause significant damage nor generate any concern in rural communities, and so that we can continue to access a variety of terrains for Rogaining.

Australia has always been aware of biosecurity risks to its important agricultural industry and outdoor way of life. Today, our domestic and export markets are working towards the lifetime tracking of livestock, and hence requiring more documentation and control by owners who wish to sell their animals at market. One hundred Rogainers walking across farmland and forest can pose real or perceived risks that might jeopardise the viability of agricultural enterprises and our sport. With ever-increasing international travel by Rogainers, we are familiar with the rigorous quarantine checks applied as we visit New Zealand or re-enter Australia. Because we visit more than just the cities when we travel overseas, the biosecurity risks that we might pose are different from that of ordinary tourists.

Risks during local travel can involve fauna or flora, and might mean destructive insects, invasive plants, or diseases. The means of introduction can be by infected dirt on shoes or clothing or camping gear, seeds in clothing especially shoes or animal or plant matter wrapped accidently in tents.

Specific risks with relationship to Rogaining (recognising that there are additional exotic risks already managed by Australian Quarantine) include anthrax, footrot, fire ants, Johne’s disease, serrated tussock, other plant diseases, weed seeds, bovine viral diarrhoea and caprine arthritis encephalitis.

Procedures at Rogaine events to mitigate risk.

The message for all Rogainers to understand is: