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National Marine NRM News 

July 2020 
In This Edition:


Living Shorelines
On Tuesdsay the 21st of July, the OceanWatch team was at Brisbane Water installing living shorelines bags. Made of coconut fibre and filled with old oyster shell these bags help with shoreline protection and habitat creation by restoring shellfish reefs that once formed the backbone of many temperate & subtropical estuaries. In total 45 bags were installed along a 15 metre stretch of the estuary. The team also had a chance to see how some of the older bags were progressing.

Learn more about the living shorelines program here.

OceanWatch is Hiring
OceanWatch Australia is recruiting a project officer for spatial bushfire recovery.

The project they will focus on aims to set up a predictive spatial mapping tool tailored to 6 regions of Australia (Northern Tasmania, Kangaroo Island, North Eastern Victoria, South and North NSW and Southern Queensland) that experienced severe fires and downstream coastal impacts.

Applications close at 5pm Monday, 10th August.

Find out more and apply here.

Marine Technology

Sofar Ocean
Sofar Ocean, is a marine technology company made of engineers and oceanographers, which is based in San Francisco. Sebastien Boulay, Physical Oceanographer and Director of Business Development, is located in New Zealand.
We specialize in developing marine devices that are much more affordable and convenient to use than traditional systems. Our Spotter wave buoy and
Trident underwater drone are already used worldwide for offshore aquaculture monitoring. Our devices can be deployed, anchored and operated by a single person, on a small vessel, as opposed to traditional weather monitoring devices. The Spotter buoy is autonomous, with its power being provided by solar panels and rechargeable batteries, and the telemetry done by satellite link.
We recently developed the Smart Mooring, which allows the real-time measurement of environmental parameters (temperature, dissolved oxygen…) in the water column, as any depth required. The surface wave buoy provides power and communication to the underwater sensors.
The data is then accessible on an online portal and via an API (for integration in other farm management systems), along with the standard wave measurements. This is a highly customizable system which can integrate any kind of marine sensors. 

It is currently deployed in numerous high-energy fish farms around the world and is used to monitor the live weather conditions at the offshore pens and make the decision to send staff offshore or not. The live environmental parameters are used for feed management and warnings of algae bloom for example

For more details, contact Sebastien at 
The OceanWatch Master Fisherman program involves formal training and assessment for professional fishers, and supplementary development of online fisher profiles to help demonstrate individual commitment to responsible fishing practices. 
More than 130 professional fisherman across NSW have participated in the program. The program is now expanding interstate and will initially focus on professional fisherman in SA.
Recognised OceanWatch Master Fisherman are continuing to raise the standard of responsible fishing in Australia. These fisherman showcase the drive for sustainability and environmental awareness in the Australian seafood industry.

Learn more.
Kay Forster

Kay is a proud women professional fisherman from the Forster region. She started fishing with her husband Tony Forster in 1989.

She has over a decade of experience working in the industry, supplying the community with exceptional quality local seafood.

Kay is very pleased to be recognised as an OceanWatch Master Fisherman, 
trained and experienced in responsible and sustainable fishing practices.

Learn more.
Luke Webber

Luke is a third generation fishermen. He started to fish in 2000 on his dad’s boat with his two brothers off the Coffs Coast. His Dad, Rodney Webber, is now retired but Luke operates a boat he built. Luke’s boat is named Freedom.

Luke’s fresh catch is available at the Coffs Harbour Fishermen’s Co-Op.

Luke is a recognised OceanWatch Master Fisherman, trained and experienced in responsible and sustainable fishing practices.

Learn more

Get Involved

Landcare Week: August 3-9
The annual Landcare Week campaign celebrates and acknowledges the thousands of Landcare networks and groups, facilitators, and other environmental care community groups and volunteers across Australia working on conservation and sustainable land management activities in their local area. Connecting with nature improves your mental health and connection to place. With Australians having experienced drought, bushfires, and a global pandemic, people need social connections and to get outdoors.

Get involved...

Join Clean-up Australia's Plog-A-Thon
Clean Up Australia is running a Plog-A-Thon until the end of August, it's not too late to get involved and do your bit to keep our environment clean. 

The Clean Up Australia PLOG-A-THON is the ideal way to get your essential exercise while cleaning up your neighbourhood – it’s the way you become a force for good!

All participants will pay a $20 registration fee and receive a plogging kit containing gloves, hand sanitiser and bags. As with traditional walk-a-thons and other fun runs, you can register as an individual or join a virtual team, setting targets for fundraising, distance covered and litter collection.

Funds raised will enable Clean Up Australia to provide educational resources and clean up materials free of charge to school and youth groups, educating the next generation on the importance of protecting and caring for the environment. 

Get involved...

In The News

IFAM Extension
Image Source: SIA

The Federal Government announced earlier this month that the International Freight Assistance Mechanism will be extended until December 2020.

“The $240 million extension will allow Australia’s wild-catch fishers and aquaculturists to deliver an estimated $3 billion worth of produce to key international markets including China, Japan, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates....The IFAM extension will provide market certainty to our exporters who rely on air freight, and will help protect jobs in the wild-caught and aquaculture sectors, and countless more positions downstream in postharvest, freight and beyond."- SIA
Seafood industry to utilise new technology in fight against food fraud
Image Source: ABC

"The seafood industry is hoping world-first technology will protect them against food fraud.
An X-ray fluorescence machine will use isotopic fingerprinting to ensure boxes marked as Australian product do not contain cheaper and counterfeited product from overseas.
This testing looks at the DNA of a species — where the DNA from one region will differ from the DNA of another determining where it comes from.
Different fish species will have certain elements, such as the water or environment they have come from, that can allow researchers to identify their region of origin.
"- ABC
$9 million to support NSW Seafood Industries

The NSW Government announced it will deliver critical relief to the State’s commercial fishing, aquaculture and charter boat industries with Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall  announcing $9 million in direct industry support.

The $9 million support package includes
  • $4 million in fee waivers for Commercial Fishers
  • $2.1 million in fee waivers and rent relief for the Aquaculture industry
  • $200,000 in fee waivers for the Charter Boat Fishing Sector
  • $500,000 in rent relief for fishing cooperatives located on Crown land
  • $2.2 million in industry stimulus programs

Grants, Awards and Opportunities 

UTAS Science of Fishing online course

Science of Fishing is for everyone; from people wanting to develop their skills and knowledge in fishing, those looking to enhance their recreational fishing experience, to those looking to contribute to a sustainable fishery. 

Learn more here.

Get Listed on the Oyster Finder

To support NSW oyster sales during a difficult time for the seafood industry, an online directory of oyster farms & oyster retailers has been developed. The directory is available here.  This searchable map will help customers find oysters, users are able to filter their searches by: 
•    oyster farms
•    farms offering shed gate sales
•    those offering mail orders
•    those offering home delivery
•    those offering tourism experiences 
Get listed by entering your details

Learn more here

Nominations for the Bob Hawke Landcare Award

Nominations are now open for the Bob Hawke Landcare Award and will close on August 31. Following is information that you can use for your newsletter, website or social media channels or email your networks. You will find attached social media graphics for Facebook and Instagram please let me know if you require another type of graphic.  

Learn more here.

Related Newsletters & Links

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OceanWatch Australia · Locked Bag 247 · Pyrmont, New South Wales 2009 · Australia