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INNS Paddler Survey Published

Last year we invited paddlers to take part in an online survey to understand the movement of UK paddlers.

We joined forces with the University of Leeds and their Biological Sciences Faculty to ask questions around how paddlers clean and store their equipment and gathered opinions on invasive non-native species too. 

The summarised data has now been published, and there's some highlights in there for us too. Take a look at the PDF below and the bullet points taken from the research. And remember, always check, clean, dry!

  • The results show that paddlers visit lots of different places, both at home and abroad
  • The research explored what steps paddlers take that would reduce the risk of INNS spread
  • Over 8 out of 10 paddlers clean and over 9 out of 10 dry their equipment and clothing
  • Over half of paddlers have heard of Check Clean Dry, a notable increase from the 22% in 2011
  • Over two thirds of paddlers had heard of Check Clean Dry through British Canoeing
  • Overall, findings show a clear improvement of paddlers engaging with biosecurity from 2011 to 2020


The research indicates that knowledge of check clean dry as a biosecurity measure is improving, but we need to make sure all paddlers understand and carry out these measures before paddling on different waterways. 

Why is check clean dry important?

Not only do a number of these alien species severely (and negatively) impact our native species, but they also have a massive impact on our canals, rivers, lakes and other waterways where we want to go paddling.

Several plant species cause a major headache to navigation authorities who have to spend around £25 million per year clearing these plants out of our waterways. They not only destroy the natural ecosystem, but can totally block any waterways they appear in. The local river you love paddling down could be completely taken over by floating pennywort for example, in a matter of days. This ‘clogging up’ prevents us from paddling, and also suffocates the other animals and plants living there too.

So remember, check, clean, dry and help stop the spread!

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