Baby Turtlesturtle hutchling

 

 

 

 

 

 


29 June 2020

BIEPA is sending you a series of information and studies to ensure members, friends and affiliates are conversant with the sterilising impacts 4×4 recreational beach driving has on our once LIVING beach ecosystems.

Today we are sending you links to four scientific studies that demonstrate the damaging impacts 4×4 (ORV) beach driving has on our LIVING beach.

See attached photos taken by a BIEPA member on Woorim’s main beach – demonstrating the damage just one vehicle can do.  (This beach is NOT designated as a highway by the Queensland Government.  However, 4x4s have 24/7 access to Ocean Beach with ~ 3,000 on Australia Day 2019.)

Off-Road Vehicle use is arguably one of the most environmentally damaging human activities undertaken on sandy beaches worldwide.  Existing scientific studies focused on areas of high traffic volumes have demonstrated significantly lower abundance, diversity, and species richness of the fauna in zones where traffic is concentrated.

A Western Australian scientist concludes: ‘Given the choice between either reducing traffic volumes, or excluding ORV traffic from beaches, our results suggest that the latter would be more appropriate when the retention of ecological integrity is the objective.’ 

That is: Should 4×4 beach driving be allowed to continue to destroy and sterilise Bribie Island’s Internationally, Nationally and State protected Ocean Beach?

“There is a growing body of evidence on the nature and extent of environmental degradation caused by ORVs (Off-Road Vehicles) on beaches, including geomorphological changes; destruction of dune vegetation; and impacts on wildlife such as turtles, birds and invertebrates.” Schlacher et al.

(1).  https://serc.carleton.edu/vignettes/collection/35397.html   EFFECTS OF 4-WHEEL  DRIVE VEHICLES ON BEACH SEDIMENT TRANSPORT

(2).  http://research.usc.edu.au/vital/access/manager/Repository/usc:2071/SOURCE2    PHYSICAL IMPACTS CAUSED BY OFF-ROAD VEHICLES TO SANDY BEACHES

(3) https://www.nature.com/articles/srep24899.   LOW-LEVEL OFF-ROAD VEHICLE  (ORV) TRAFFIC NEGATIVELY IMPACTS MACROINVERTEBRATE  ASSEMBLAGES AT SANDY BEACHES IN SOUITH-WESTERN AUSTRALIA.

(4).  https://oceanexplorer.noaa.gov/edu/learning/10_tides/activities/intertidal.html.

LIFE IN THE INTERTIDAL ZONE.

4×4 impacts Bribie Island Feb_20


23 June 2020

Attached you will find some interesting information from commentaries by 4×4 enthusiasts demonstrating how 4×4 beach driving is the antithesis of Nature-based recreational activities.
Also attached is the brochure: “Driving on Sand Safety Guide QPWS” (Queensland Government Department of Environment and Science, DES).  We have highlighted some points (on the two pages) in yellow and red.
We hope you will gain some insight into some of the reasons 4×4 beach driving is a contradiction to and incompatible with conserving and protecting a healthy beach ecology, beach ecosystems, and endangered wildlife – in particular nesting turtles and migratory shorebirds.

19 June 2020

 4×4 PANDEMIC – DEATH TO BRIBIE ISLAND’S OCEAN BEACH

For more than 6 years BIEPA has been lobbying the Queensland Government to address the serious issues relating to the destruction 4×4 recreational beach driving has caused to Bribie Island’s environmental, social and economic health.

Attached is a poster and excerpt from a study and links to assist you in understanding our concerns.  We hope you find the information informative.

from your BIEPA Management Committee

Excerpt_ORVs on Beaches_Impacts_Australia_Discussion

4x4s vs turtle hatchlings

Baby Turtles

Photo credit: Diane Oxenford

In celebration of World Turtle Day on May 23, we would like to draw your attention to a sand dune stabilisation project underway at Bribie Island’s Woorim Beach. Healthy Land and Water is supporting the Bribie Island Environment Protection Association (BIEPA) and the Barung Landcare Skilling Queenslanders for Work team to deliver the Woorim Beach Dune Rehabilitation Project, funded by the National Landcare Program and Moreton Bay Regional Council. The project aims to enhance the area for turtle nesting by reducing dune erosion and artificial light spill through weed control and revegetation.

Bribie Island lies within the internationally recognised listed Moreton Bay Ramsar Wetland, one of the most important feeding and nesting grounds for marine turtles along the east coast of Australia. Green turtles graze on seagrass while loggerheads eat the shellfish, crabs, sea urchins, and jellyfish that live in seagrass meadows.

Two hectares of sand dunes will be stabilised along the beach at Woorim through comprehensive manual weeding, drilling, and chemical weed management where appropriate, followed by revegetation. Healthy dune systems will provide stable nesting habitat for the internationally endangered loggerhead turtles. As temperatures rise the subtropical beaches will become even more important for maintaining healthy populations with gender balance, as the sex of turtles is determined by the nest temperature and a range of other conditions.

As a result of the diminished vegetation along the coast, artificial light from the street and houses can spill onto the beach. When turtles hatch, they can head towards this artificial light instead of the light on the horizon out to sea. Turtles will usually only choose to nest on dark beaches. Building the height of the native dune vegetation will help prevent artificial light from spilling onto the beach.

 turtle hutchling

Photo credit: Diane Oxenford

President of BIEPA Diane Oxenford has been the main turtle monitor for Bribie Island since 2008 and has driven this project. Over the years, Diane has developed extensive knowledge and expertise through training with the Department of Environment and Science turtle expert Dr. Colin (Col) Limpus.

“The numbers of endangered Loggerhead Turtles of the South Pacific Ocean that nest along beaches in South East Queensland are diminishing. In 1977 it was estimated there were 3,500 nesting loggerhead turtles. Today the number is estimated to be around 500,” says Diane.

Diane says it is important this work and funding is considered long-term, if not a permanent commitment.

“The more dune available for a storm event to consume, the more likely it is the dunes will recover and maintain their stability and ability to protect the built environment and provide healthy habitat for wildlife. It is important to prevent costly engineered solutions to beach erosion. It would be so sad to lose Woorim’s natural bush setting,” says Diane.BIEPA members

Thanks to the extraordinary teams of volunteers who work on the coast every turtle nesting season from November through to April the numbers of hatchlings that make it to the ocean have increased by thousands over the past 15 years.

This Woorim Beach Dune Rehabilitation Project will be completed by June 2020, delivered with appropriate COVID-19 measures in place. The site will also be maintained by revegetation for years, as there is a lot of wallaby grazing in the area.

If you would like to learn more or find out how you can be involved post COVID-19, please get in contact with BIEPA.

 

This project is supported by the Bribie Island Environment Protection Association (BIEPA), Barung Landcare, and Healthy Land and Water through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare program and Moreton Bay Regional Council.

 

 

 

 

 

BIEPA is indebted to our First Nations peoples who continue to share their wisdom in how they have been Caring for Country – Our Special Habitat and it’s Residents – for Millennia.

National Reconciliation Week 2020

National Reconciliation Week is a time for all Australians to reflect on our shared histories and relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation.

Reconciliation Week May 27th to June 3rd 2020

Reconciliation Week this year is a chance to celebrate and build on respectful relationships shared by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians and  explore how non-Aboriginal Australians can be active in promoting reconciliation.  Here’s some things that you could do:

Benarrawa Sorry Day Ceremony:

Topic: Benarrawa Sorry Day Ceremony 2020

Time: May 26, 2020 06:30 AM Brisbane

Join Zoom Meeting

https://zoom.us/j/97118918168?pwd=eG5VdVpRemZXa2s2bFl6TmdQNkE3Zz09

Meeting ID: 971 1891 8168

Password: Benarrawa

Watch a Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3&v=jBJ_OjnPgYA&feature=emb_logo

BIEPA IS PROVIDING A COPY OF A VERY INTERESTING STUDY BY SCIENTISTS AT CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency; Project AWARE, which is a global non-profit connecting community action and policy; and Ocean Conservancy, a US-based advocacy non-profit, that evaluated the relationship between land-based debris and what is found on corresponding seafloors. 
 
BIEPA MEMBER, RHYS WALKER, HAS BEEN APPLYING FOR AND USING GRANTS TO COLLECT MARINE DEBRIS FROM BRIBIE ISLAND’S WESTERN FORESHORE FOR THE PAST FOUR YEARS.
 
HIS REPORTS ON WHAT HE COLLECTS GO TO A RESEARCH DATABASE.
 
THANKS TO ALL THE VOLUNTEERS WHO WORK SO HARD TO GATHER THE NECESSARY DATA.  SEE ATTACHED REPORT ON RESEARCH THAT SHOWS GENERAL MISMATCH BETWEEN SHORELINES AND SEAFLOOR. 
 
IT WILL BE A GOOD DAY WHEN OUR OCEANS AND FORESHORES ARE CLEAN AGAIN.
Research shows general mismatch between shorelines and seafloor