Over the first weekend of September Reef Ecologic partnered with Reef Check Australia as part of their Integrated Coral Reef Citizen Science Program in supporting local traditional owners in improving knowledge about the health of the Reef.
Reef Check Australia’s GBR Co-ordinator Nathan Cook joined Reef Health survey instructor Pete Faulkner and GBR Assistant Coordinator Jenni Calcraft in providing a high quality training program for seven volunteers on the Reef Check’s monitoring methods and techniques. The team were hosted by Reef Magic Cruises to their Marine World pontoon site located 90 mins offshore from Cairns.
Part of the survey team included Tarquin Singleton, Indigenous Ranger with the Yirrganydji Land and Sea Program. Tarquin is already a trained surveyor under the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authorities Eye on the Reef program, and has been a member of the Authority’s crown-of-thorns starfish control teams helping to curb the damaging effects of these invertebrates on the Reef.
“Tarquin was a great addition to the group” GBR Coordinator Nathan Cook said. “With his experience and background he found the tasks fairly straightforward. But he was able to share stories of the local natural environment and highlight the sea country connections of the Yirrganydji people in that part of the Great Barrier Reef”.
The Integrated Coral Reef Citizen Science Program is funded by the partnership between the Australian Government’s Reef Trust and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation. As part of the GBRF funded project, Reef Ecologic and project partners GBR Legacy and Reef Check Australia hope to enable more traditional owners and indigenous representatives to get involved in citizen science monitoring throughout the Great Barrier Reef.
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