We’ve asked the new Noosa mayor to help remove shark nets.

Jun 01, 2020 by afdadmin
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AFD has been working to remove shark nets from Noosa’s main beach. Just last year these nets caught a baby humpback whale – which struggled for three hours while its mother waited by its side.

Noosa’s shark nets. Photo by: abc.net.au

Council elections were recently held in Noosa – congratulations to Clare Stewart for becoming the new Mayor!

With the change in council comes a new opportunity for progress.

That’s why AFD, with the support of local and international organisations including Noosa Parks Association and the World Surfing Reserve, has pulled together conservation groups, sporting organisations, tourist operators, and scientific experts to call on the new council and Mayor to help remove lethal shark nets in favour of trialling of non-lethal alternatives.

Have a read of our joint letter:

To the Mayor and Noosa Shire Councillors,

On behalf of the undersigned individuals, associations, and organisations, we are writing to express our support for a council decision to trial non-lethal shark mitigation alternatives in Noosa.

We welcome the state government’s recent announcement to invest $1 million annually over four years into researching new technologies. Given our Shire’s strong green credentials, it would be wonderful for Noosa to lead the way when it comes to implementing updated shark mitigation technology.

High-levels of by-catch in Noosa causes significant damage to the marine environment. According to Queensland government’s catch statistics, between 2001 to 2017 the mesh nets and lethal drum lines caught 519 marine animals in Noosa, a figure which includes animals from both endangered and critically endangered species.

In this 17-year period alone, 7 turtles, 26 dolphins, 87 rays and 2 dugongs have been caught in Noosa.

In 2013, 2016 and 2019 a humpback whale was caught in Noosa’s shark nets.

As a Shire focused on sustainability and eco-tourism it is important to ensure our precious marine life is safe from harm.

A council decision supporting a government trial of non-lethal shark mitigation alternatives in Noosa would be welcomed.

Yours sincerely,

Action for Dolphins, Coolum and North Shore Coast Care, David S Schoeman, Professor of Global-Change Ecology at Sunshine Coast University, Eco Noosa, Mark Orams, Co-Chair of International Coastal and Marine Tourism Society, Noosa Ocean Rider, Noosa Parks Association, Noosa Wave Boating Adventures, Outriggers Association, Sunshine Coast Environment Council, Tim Smith, Professor of Sustainability, World Surfing Reserve.

Many thanks to all of the scientists and groups working together in an attempt to give marine life a safe passage past Noosa.

You can show support for the removal of shark nets by signing the petition or browsing our anti shark net merch.

AFD eagerly await the council’s response, and promise to keep you updated every step of the way.