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National Marine NRM News 

July 2022
In This Edition:


Responsible Oyster Farmer Training
The OceanWatch Responsible Oyster Farmer Training Program kicked off last week on the NSW South Coast. The Program is designed to provide an in-depth background and overview of responsible oyster farming practices as outlined in the Oyster Industry Sustainable Aquaculture Strategy. It consists of 12 modules that were developed in consultation with NSW DPI Aquaculture Management, NSW DPI Aquatic Biosecurity, NSW Food Authority, South Coast Wilderness Oysters, and NSW Farmer's Association covering topics pertinent to the oyster industry and responsible and best practice oyster farming. Over the past 2 weeks OceanWatch have run a series of 4 in-person workshops on the North and South Coast of NSW. The training program is also being made available online in coming months for those who were unable to attend in person. 

This project is supported by OceanWatch Australia, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.
Celebrating the OceanWatch Master Fisherman
This week the team is in Brisbane to recognise the OceanWatch Master Fisherman from the QLD East Coast Crab fishery for their commitment to environmental best practice. The fishers are being recognised through several events that seek to connect fishers and their products with the seafood supply chain, hospitality sector, and seafood consumers .
Recognised OceanWatch Master Fisherman have an online profile that showcases their fishing methods, harvested species, and their story. Fishers can link their catch to these profiles using QR codes that can be presented with their produce. This helps to increase transparency of seafood products so that chefs and consumers know where their seafood comes from and how it was caught.

Attendees of these events had the opportunity to learn about the fishing methods, the quality of the product, and how these Master Fisherman implement environmental best practice into their day-to-day operations. We also had the opportunity to learn first-hand out on the water how these fishers operate from Lionel Reisenweber, Ryan and Luke Hurtado
Similar events will be held in South Australia next week for recent graduates of the SA Master Fisherman Training Program.

Learn more about the Master Fisherman Program.

This project is supported by OceanWatch Australia, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.
Bega Bushfire Resilience Tours
Check this snapshot of our three bushfire resilience tours in the bushfire affected Bega River catchment, on the NSW South Coast. This is part of a series of tours being held in 5 bushfire affected catchments on the NSW South Coast. The last of these tours will be held at the Shoalhaven River in mid August, If you are interested in participating in the tours you can find out more and sign up here

This is a Bushfire Community Recovery and Resilience Fund project through the joint Commonwealth/State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.” Although funding for this video has been provided by both the Australian and NSW Governments, the material contained herein does not necessarily represent the views of either government.

Find out more about our bushfire recovery work
Mangrove Recovery
We have been working with MangroveWatch, local Landcare groups, oyster growers, and community volunteers on the recovery of mangroves damaged by the 2019-2020 bushfires. As part of the initiative we had a new mangrove sign installed at Wonboyn in early July. The sign provides information on the importance of mangrove ecosystems, the impacts of bushfires to mangroves, and what you can do to help mangroves. We have also put together a video that explains the program in more detail, check out the video below. 
This Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery project is supported by the Australian Government’s Bushfire Recovery Program for Wildlife and their Habitat.

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. 
The OceanWatch Master Fisherman program is continuing to raise the standard of responsible fishing in Australia. Recognised professional fishermen showcase the drive for sustainability and environmental awareness in the Australian seafood industry.

Learn more.
Glen Hill

Glen is a 1st generation professional fisherman based in Meningie, SA. Glen fishes from 16ft tinnies which are launched from the rocks or beach around his local town. He has a strong passion for the marine environment, loves the complete connection with nature and the ability to improve his ecofootprint as a fisherman. He is an environmental advocate, a river fellow within the Murray Darling Basin System and loves learning and providing knowledge to the public.

Learn more
Mark McMillan

Mark McMillan is an experienced 3rd generation professional fisherman from Gladstone, QLD. Mark began as as a deckhand on his fathers boat, and began fishing professionally in 1987. He loves the freedom in which fishing provides and spending time outdoors, and continues to fish in the waters around Gladstone on his open tinnies.

Learn more. 

Get Involved

Coastal & Marine Environments Flood Damage Survey
Following the most recent flooding events on the east coast, OceanWatch is determined to find out where and what damage or dangers to aquatic habitats exist across our seascape so that we can forward on such information to relevant organisations with abilities to act.
To that end we need you to help us be the eyes and ears on your local waterway. If you are out and about, tell us what you have seen.  Take part in this survey. We are also interested in observations below the water where all things eventually sink and impact seafood harvesting and marine productivity.
Take part in the survey here

In The News

New NSW Extension Officer

Fishers and aquaculturists in New South Wales can now access a state-based officer appointed by Fisheries Research and Development Corporation to strengthen the exchange of information with end users and increase the uptake of research and development (R&D).
Fisheries scientist Kris Cooling, who is based in Coffs Harbour, has been appointed to work with Indigenous, commercial and recreational fishers and aquaculturists as the NSW representative of FRDC’s new national extension officer network.

Taste of Seafood Festival Announced

Dates for the upcoming Taste of Seafood Festivals have been announced, beginning in Sydney in late September the PFA will be holding 8 festivals across NSW over the next 8 months. The Taste of Seafood Festivals are run by the Professional Fishers Association with the objective of championing local industry and supporting sustainable fishing practices.These events showcase the quality seafood provided by our NSW professional fishers. Attendees will have the opportunity to feast on delicious Seafood fare, enjoy a variety of live music and join in with a range of activities featuring boats, commercial and recreational fishing exhibits, cooking competitions, educational displays, arts & crafts plus interactive kids entertai nment!!
The dates are: 

  • Sydney 25th September 22
  • Dubbo 29th October 22
  • Ballina 9th Oct 22 (check this)
  • Bermagui 26th November 22
  • Hawkesbury 4th Feb 23
  • Wallis Lake 18th March 23
  • Newcastle 15th April 23
State of the Environment Report

The recently released state of the environment report is a comprehensive assessment of the health of every aspect of our environment. Combining scientific, traditional and local knowledge, Indigenous and non-Indigenous people have worked together to create this first holistic assessment of the state of Australia’s environment. The report aims to help shape policy and action, influence behaviours, and assess our actions as stewards of the Australian environment.

Read more.

Coral Cover at Highest Level in 36 yrs

The AIMS’ Annual Summary Report on Coral Reef Condition for 2021/22 has been released, and it shows another year of increased coral cover across much of the Reef.  The northern and central Great Barrier Reef have recorded their highest amount of coral cover since the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) began monitoring 36 years ago.  

Read more.

Marine Plastic Recycling
The invention turning waste to resource ♻ | Movin’ to the Country | ABC Australia

Louise Hardman has been working with communities to transform marine debris into useful resources. Using her shruder recycling stations to break down debris into a useable form and partner with manufacturers to transform it into useful resources. 

Read more.

Grants, Awards and Opportunities 

Seafood Directions 2022

Registrations have opened to attend the Seafood Directions Event held in Brisbane from 13-15 September 2022. 

Seafood Directions is the premier ideas, innovation and networking event for the Australian seafood industry. The national forum provides an opportunity to promote the seafood industry, discuss industry issues, workshop solutions, teach best practices, share knowledge, and plan for the future of the seafood industry.

Register here.

2022 NSW Sustainability Awards

Entries for the 2022 NSW Sustainability Awards are now open. The Awards celebrate the people and projects creating a sustainable future for NSW. Businesses, community groups, public sector organisations and individuals are invited to tell their stories of innovation, collaboration and leadership.  
Entries close 8th September 2022.  

Learn more.

National Landcare Conference

Registrations are now open for the 2022 National Landcare Conference to be held at the International Convention Centre in Sydney Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 August. Registration as a virtual conference delegate is FREE.

Learn more.

Flood Assistance

The NSW and Australian Governments have announced additional assistance measures to support primary producers who have been impacted by the floods and severe weather that occurred from 27 June 2022 onwards. Special Disaster Grants of up to $75,000 now available for primary producers in declared LGAs. Once approved, eligible primary producers can access $25,000 in assistance up-front, with a further $50,000 in financial assistance available thereafter upon submission of valid tax invoices.

Learn more.

Fishing Industry Leadership & Representation Training

Fishing Industry Leadership Training is now available to all within the seafood industry. Through a project funded by the Australian Government and a collaboration between the Professional Fishers Association, Seafood Industry Victoria, Wildcaught SA and the Australian Maritime & Fisheries Academy a comprehensive online learning tool has been developed. It is essential for fishers to be able to engage with Fisheries Agencies to better contribute towards fisheries management decision making.  This is why it is critical for our Industry to have the tools it needs to better participate and engage in the management of our fisheries. 
The Training is a free, self-paced online system made by fishers to help fishers.  The training focuses on:
•    Effective communication
•    Meeting processes
•    Technology knowledge
•    Decision making
•    Identifying opportunities for involvement
•    Community engagement and social license to operate
•    Business and Community stakeholder values
•    Finding common ground


The Sunrise Project Small Grants program

An open application process for small grants of up to $5,000 for community groups working to hasten the transition from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy or to protect Australia’s ecosystems from the negative impacts of the coal and gas industries. 

Learn more.

Wettenhall Environment Trust's Small Environmental Grant Scheme

Providing support for people undertaking projects that will make a positive difference to the natural living environment, in land, sea or air, rural or urban. Supports grassroots organisations and individuals, and academics who are working with on-ground community groups. Includes four rounds every year. Grants are usually $10,000 and focus on flora and fauna conservation or threatened mammal conservation.

Learn more.

Marine NRM Coastal Directory

The Marine NRM Coastal Directory is designed to connect people and skill sets reducing silos between disciplines. This free register, publicly available on the OceanWatch website, is an easy way to engage new colleagues and extend your network, helping to fuel the growth of Australia's blue-green innovations. Key information on Researchers, Natural Resource Management Agents, and Suppliers working in the marine environment, are now accessible in one place.

Create your account or search for others

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