Future leaders protect inshore biodiversity in western Cape York

Published: 10/09/2012

Students from a Reef Guardian School in western Cape York are being enlisted to protect plants, animals and habitats near the shoreline of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Student leaders from Western Cape College’s Mapoon campus are taking part in the day-long Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's 2012 Future Leaders Eco Challenge, which includes hands-on activities at Jaine Creek.

GBRMPA Reef Guardian Schools Acting Program Manager, Carolyn Luder, said students will learn how the coastal, marine and Reef catchment areas are interconnected and reliant on one another to function.

"Inshore ecosystems cover about 10 per cent of the Great Barrier Reef and are made up of a diverse range of habitats including seagrass meadows, salt marshes, mangroves, estuaries and beaches," she said.

"Some of these habitats and species may not be part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area but they are interconnected and vital to the health of the Reef.

"These areas are under a lot of pressure from a range of impacts including coastal development and declining water quality, so it's vital students understand the need for long-term protection of these habitats."

The event is supported by Tangaroa Blue Ocean Care Society, the Cape York Local Marine Advisory Committee, Earth Smart Science (Education Qld) and Mapoon Land and Sea Rangers.

Reef Guardian Schools is an environmental education program run by GBRMPA.

Name: GBRMPA Media
Contact: (07) 4750 0846