16 Jan 2012

Shellfish toxin warning for Bay of Plenty

7:07 pm on 16 January 2012

The Waikato District Health Board has issued a warning about a potentially fatal shellfish toxin affecting the Bay of Plenty.

Toxins that cause Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) have reached warning levels along the coast from Tairua to the Whakatane Heads, Matakana and Motiti islands.

The board says bivalve shellfish, catseyes and kina should not be taken or eaten, while paua, crayfish and crabs should have the guts removed before cooking.

The DHB says in severe cases, PSP can cause paralysis and respiratory failure.

Monitoring of toxin levels will continue in the affected areas.