- Thursday 10 January 2019
Clean We love our Sunshine Coast turtle hatchlings and from this Saturday you can register to help give them an even better chance of survival.
Council’s TurtleCare program, in collaboration with SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast and Reef Check Australia, is preparing for the annual Clean-up for the Hatchlings event on Saturday, February 2.
To match last year’s success, which saw more than 800kg of debris removed from our beaches by more than 300 volunteers, the organisers are once again asking for the community to donate some time for our turtles.
Environment Portfolio Cr Jenny McKay said marine debris was a major cause of concern for sea turtle hatchlings as they undertake their long migration across the Pacific Ocean. Plastics ending up in the ocean break up in small pieces which are mistaken for food by turtle hatchlings and other marine animals.
“Our Clean-up for the Hatchlings volunteers will be removing debris from the beaches, giving the hundreds of turtle hatchlings due to emerge over the coming weeks the best chance of survival,” Cr McKay said.
“Each year, marine debris injures and kills thousands of marine animals, including sea turtles.
“With the majority of collected marine debris originating from the land, this is a good reminder to the community to say no to plastic packaging, take their rubbish home, or even pick up litter when they see it.”
While beach clean-ups help to remove some of the rubbish from the environment, residents are urged to tackle the problem at the source. Some simple steps to help include: avoiding single use plastics (like plastic bags and straws), BYO water bottle, coffee cup and carry bag, and to reuse and recycle where possible.
As part of Clean-up for the Hatchlings, Reef Check Australia snorkel volunteers will assist with in-water clean-up activities in key marine debris hot spots along the Mooloolaba and Caloundra area.
“It’s important for us to understand the extent of debris that makes its way into our marine environments, both land and sea based. And what better time to do it than as a part of the Clean-up for the Hatchlings event,” said Jodi Salmond, Communications and SEQ Projects Manager, for Reef Check Australia.
Clean-up locations are spread across several Sunshine Coast beaches from Caloundra to Coolum.
Sign on is from 6am at each location, with the clean-up lasting until about 7.30am.
Volunteers are reminded to wear sun-safe clothing, closed shoes and bring drinking water.
A complimentary BBQ breakfast for all participants will be served at 8am at the marine debris weigh in station at La Balsa Park in Buddina.
Attendees will also have the opportunity to win lots of turtley awesome raffle prizes.
Registrations open Saturday, January 12. Please register your attendance via council’s events website events.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au