Reef Guardian Fishers

The Reef Guardian Fishers program recognises commercial fishers who are fishing sustainably and maintaining the health of the Great Barrier Reef while building the future of their fishery, their business and the Reef.

Reef Guardian Fishers operate in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and use practices that go beyond what is required by State and Federal laws.

There are 17 fishing operations across the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park recognised under the Reef Guardian program.

Participants in the program:

  • Set robust voluntary protocols for their operations
  • Develop innovative practices to minimise impacts on the environment
  • Share knowledge with other fishers and their communities.


A key initiative of the Reef Guardian Fishers program is involving all participants in using an emissions calculator to measure carbon emissions and identify ways to more energy and cost efficient.

Participants also report back to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority on the health of the marine environment. For example, coral damage, sightings of rare or unusual species.
 
The reef line fishery and commercial marine aquarium fish and coral collectors were the first fisheries to take part in the Reef Guardian Fishers program. The program has now expanded to include the large mesh gill net fishery and trawl. This now means that all major fisheries occurring in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park are represented in the Reef Guardian fishers program.


 Reef Guardian Fisher collage
  

Joining the Reef Guardian Fishers program

Commercial fishers operating in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park looking to join the program are assessed in operational areas including:
  • Fishing operations
  • Vessel operations
  • Business management
  • Community engagement
  • Risk management.
Participants and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority are working together to refine and develop the standard.


For more information on how to join the program contact the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

Reef Guardian Participant Interviews

Image of Reef Guardian participant



Reef Guardian interview with Michael Gardner from the Queensland Seafood industry Association


Image of Reef Guardian participant



Reef Guardian interview with Gareth Andrew, commercial line fisherman