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National Marine NRM News 

March 2020 
In This Edition:


This year we could not celebrate local, sustainable seafood in the usual way, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Alternatively, in recognition of a 10 year achievement, the professional fishermen of South West Rocks donated their locally caught and processed Sea Mullet to the indigenous communities on the NSW north coast, including those whose ancestors fished these shores long before the fisherman of today. Some of whom, still continue to fish these shores. In a time when people are struggling with isolation, and food and job insecurity, these professional fishermen have chosen to give back to the community and in doing so are recognising the original stewards of our oceans.
Loaves and Fishes is a free seafood barbeque, which has aimed to build community knowledge, unity and support for sustainable Australian wild harvest fisheries. Each year we have seen this event grow, as more and more of the community join the South West Rocks ocean haul fishermen and the local Surf Life Saving Club in celebrating sustainable Australian seafood.

In addition to the sea mullet barbeque, the event has aimed to improve community awareness and understanding of the NSW Ocean Haul Fishery. This event provides the community with detailed information on ocean haul fishing methods, the history of fishing in the region, indigenous participation, and the role of women in industry.
We hope everyone is staying safe during this time, we will see you next year at the 11th annual Loaves and Fishes event!

Visit our website to find out more...

This month OceanWatch launched the "Learn More About" social media campaign with a look into the estuary prawn trawl fishery.
The campaign highlights the important work being done in the Australian seafood industry to ensure seafood is sustainably sourced. It provides insight into the methods used in each fishery and showcases the important bycatch reduction devices that help to keep Australian Seafood Sustainable. 
This campaign recognises the OceanWatch Master Fisherman who are committed to best practice, and responsible fishing methods. These professional fishermen are raising the standard of fishing in Australia.

Keep an eye on our Facebook and Instagram pages to learn more about the fisheries that keep sustainable Australian Seafood on our plates.  Please help to share our messages.

The OceanWatch Master Fisherman program is a formal training and assessment for professional fishers, helping to demonstrate commitment to responsible fishing practices. Oceanwatch have now trained over 110 professional fisherman across NSW as Master Fisherman and are now expanding the program interstate, starting with 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.
Allan Reed

Allan is a professional fisherman based in Tuggerah Lakes, he has fished since 1978. He now owns one ocean boat and four lake boats.
Allan is endorsed in the NSW Estuary General Fishery
Allan is proud to be a recognised OceanWatch Master Fisherman, trained and experienced in responsible and sustainable fishing practices.

Learn more.

Brett  Bollinger

Brett is from the Newcastle area, he harvests seafood from waters north of Barrenjoey Headland in the NSW ocean fish trawl fishery to supply consumers of Australian seafood.
Brett is a generational fisherman who skippers the big red trawler ‘Maxie B’. He is proud to be a professional fisherman, harvesting seafood in a responsible and sustainable way.
Brett and his family have a proud history of supporting fisheries research programs that aim to improve best practice in fishing.


Learn more

Get Involved

Can you identify the marine debris?

The team at Tangaroa Blue recently found this device on one of their beach cleans. It was classified as fishing gear but we are not quite sure what it is exactly. We've had a few guesses ourselves but couldn't be sure. We would love to know what you think! So if you know what it is or want to have a guess, email us at

In The News

White Spot Disease Returns
Image Source: ABC

"Two prawn farms on the Logan River in South East Queensland have returned positive test results for white spot disease more than three years after it was first detected in the area.
Last month Biosecurity Queensland undertook routine surveillance in Moreton Bay with mangrove swimming crabs returning preliminary positive results.
Subsequent samples from two prawn farms on the Logan River also returned positive results."- ABC

NSW rivers, lakes and lagoons warming twice as fast as ocean, finds 12-year study
Image Source: ABC

"Dominic Boyton's Merimbula oyster farm in southern NSW has been in the family for four decades.
His father passed it onto him seven years ago but he's worried about its future viability given the latest findings from the University of Sydney (USYD).
Researchers discovered the state's coastal rivers, lakes and lagoons were warming twice as fast as the ocean."- ABC
The Great Barrier Reef just suffered its most widespread coral bleaching on record
Image Source: ABC

"Australia's Great Barrier Reef has suffered its most widespread coral bleaching on record, scientists said on Tuesday in a dire warning about the threat posed by climate change to the world's largest living organism.
James Cook University professor Terry Hughes said a comprehensive survey last month found record sea temperatures had caused the third mass bleaching of the 2,300-kilometre reef system in just five years."- SBS
Earth Day Celebrates 50 Years
Image Source:

April 22nd marked 50 years of Earth Day. Earth Day began in the US in 1970, with the mission to build the world's largest environmental movement to drive transformative change for people and the planet.
Whilst the usual celebrations could not be undertaken, Earth Day organisers encouraged everyone to take 24 hours of action, in
the hopes of giving diverse voices a platform and demanding action for people and the planet.

Learn more...

Grants, Awards and Opportunities 

Community Litter Grants

The aim of the Community Litter Grant program is to help deliver the NSW Government target to reduce litter by 40% by 2020. All funded projects must include direct community leadership and participation in the development of litter prevention activities.

Learn more here.

WIRES/Landcare wildlife relief & recovery grants program

The Landcare Australia and WIRES partnership is all about implementing immediate response, recovery and resilience building projects for wildlife in bushfire and drought impacted communities across Australia.
The grants program will provide networks and groups additional support to coordinate and fund projects to maximise the impact of their contribution to recovery efforts and strengthen outcomes for wildlife.

Learn more here.

HEYWIRE Youth Innovation Grants

$100,000 in funding to assist not-for-profit community-based organisations in rural, regional and remote Australia adopt and act on one of the six innovative Heywire project ideas. The communities selected to pilot the programs will implement their projects from September 2020.

Learn more here.


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