Plans to extend no-fish zones in Nice Sandy Marine Park fear Queensland seafood business

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It’s thought of a win for conservationists and leisure fishers, however seafood lovers and business fisheries can pay the value for proposed modifications to one in every of Queensland’s best marine parks, an business physique says.

The state authorities has launched the draft for the brand new Nice Sandy Marine Park Zoning Plan, which might see inexperienced zones improve from 3.9 per cent to 12.8 per cent.

The Nice Sandy Marine Park stretches south from Baffle Creek within the Gladstone area to Double Island Level, taking in Hervey Bay, Nice Sandy Strait, Tin Can Bay, and water off the east coast of Ok’gari (Fraser Island).

“We wish to improve a number of the tourism and leisure fishing alternatives and defend the threatened species that reside on this space,” Surroundings Minister Meaghan Scanlon stated.

“It would imply a rise of the inexperienced zone of practically 9 per cent, defending iconic species: whale, dugongs, turtles, dolphins.”

Fishers say the proposed restrictions might shut fisheries within the space.(ABC Broad Bay: Johanna Marie)

However the Queensland Seafood Business Affiliation stated the enlargement of no-fish zones had little regard for native fishers, and felt the federal government had ignored their considerations.

“The plan can have an enormous influence on the provision of contemporary fish … 95 per cent of the online fisheries shall be shut down within the Nice Sandy Marine Park,” CEO Eric Perez stated in an announcement.

Dolphin encounters underneath menace

Tin Can Bay’s Barnacle Cafe is frequented by a pod of Australian Humpback Dolphins, that are fed by vacationers with fish contemporary from the Nice Sandy Marine Park.

“We’re underneath state authorities laws that clearly units out that the dolphins have to be fed product from the Nice Sandy Marine Park,” proprietor Benjamin Dunston stated.

“Eradicating business fishing from there removes the chance to try this, which as a knock-on impact removes the dolphin feed.”

A mother and daughter hand feed a dolphin at Tin Can Bay
The Tin Can Bay Dolphin Centre is a well-liked vacationer attraction and depends on contemporary seafood.(ABC Information: Johanna Marie)

Mr Dunston stated the proposed closures would have a ripple impact on his enterprise.

“It is a large drawcard for Tin Can Bay, simply this morning for varsity holidays [we had] over 300 folks right here to feed the dolphins,” he stated.

‘It’s a stroke of the regulator’s pen, who has by no means been on the bottom and does not see what is going on on.”

Seafood lovers to pay extra

In a area identified for contemporary and native seafood, restaurant homeowners stated restrictions would ship costs up and power companies to look additional afield for produce.

“It might imply we have to outsource round Australia and even import abroad merchandise,” Hervey Bay restaurant proprietor Dean Main stated.

“We choose to serve direct from the fishery to the desk.

“Costs are ever-increasing. We additionally must be aware if the fisherman has to journey additional, then in fact it may improve costs.”

A man in an apron holds a plate of seafood.
Hervey Bay restaurant proprietor Dean Main says companies might must look abroad for provide.(ABC Broad Bay: Johanna Marie)

Conservationists rejoice

The Worldwide Fund for Nature Australia stated the net-free zones have been greatest apply in marine park planning.

“They’ve chosen slightly bit of every sort of habitat to be protected totally from fishing actions,” Senior Specialist on Coastal Communities Jim Higgs stated.

The Nice Sandy Marine Park is residence to 22 threatened species, 23 habitat sorts, and two areas of worldwide significance.

A map of the great sandy marine park
The proposed map for the Nice Sandy Marine Zoning Plan.(Equipped: Queensland authorities)

Mr Higgs stated broader yellow zones would additionally buffer and complement the inexperienced zones.

“The yellow zones cowl massive areas of the Nice Sandy Strait and a number of the rivers and creek programs that are tremendous essential for inshore dolphins and dugongs that decision the bay residence,” he stated.

Ms Scanlon stated extra particulars have been to return on a provision for extra coastal infrastructure, akin to boat ramps and synthetic reefs.

Fraser Coast Fishing Alliance Scott Mitchell chairman stated the plans have been a good compromise.

“Any leisure fisher will agree you have to defend your marine atmosphere with a view to restore, defend, and rebuild fish shares,” he stated.

The place to from right here?

The state authorities shall be taking group session on the proposed plan till October twenty third.

Ms Scanlon stated the federal government deliberate to announce a monetary bundle, obtainable for business fisheries impacted by the proposed restrictions.

“We wish to work by way of that with the business fishing business, in order that’s why we wish to sit down and take heed to them,” she stated.

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