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Focusing expertise, wisdom & enthusiasm for the benefit of Moreton Bay.

Dear <<First Name*>>

Welcome to your first edition for 2020.
Photo by Nina Clark

Moreton Bay Wetlands

February 2nd is World Wetlands Day, celebrating the signing of the International Convention on the protection of Wetlands, commonly known as the Ramsar Convention. Moreton Bay is home to extensive Ramsar listed wetlands, recognised for their international significance.

Wetlands are among the most productive ecosystems in the world supporting a diversity of plants and animals, improving water quality, and providing coastal protection against destructive impacts.

Distribution of saltmarsh, mangrove, mudflat, seagrass and coral reef areas of the Moreton Bay wetlands were examined and reported in our publication: Moreton Bay Quandmooka and Catchments - past present and future: Ch4 Wetland and benthic cover changes in Moreton Bay

Anthropogenic activity has resulted in marked decreases in the areal extent of all Moreton Bay wetland communities, and remain their greatest threat:
  • Since 1955- well over 50% of Saltmarsh communities have been lost and Moreton Bay saltmarsh communities were listed as a vulnerable ecological community under the Commonwealth EBPC Act.
  • Of the original 1955 mangrove distribution 77% remained stable (9). Encouragingly, the rate of mangrove die-back attributed to human causes decreased by 84%, strongly correlated to listing as Ramsar wetlands in 1993.
  • Mudflat extent has increased  than 50% in the past 30 years, largely attributed to recent floods, with mudflats now covering 860 kmof the Bay.
  • Despite losses in the past Seagrasses persist in Moreton Bay across a wide range of environmental conditions from muddy sediments in the western Bay to the cleaner, sandier waters of the eastern Bay adjacent to Moreton (Moorgumpin) and Stradbroke (Minjerribah) Islands. There has been an encouraging recovery of meadows in some of the more degraded parts parts of the Bay as a result of management efforts.
Continued monitoring, management and protection of the Bay’s wetland communities through government, scientific and community organisations is vital in ensuring these ecologically, socially and economically important wetland habitats thrive into the future.

Detailed information and references can be accessed here:


Manly Mudwalk - World Wetlands Day 2020 with TMBF

Join UQ A/Prof Ian Tibbets on a guided walk in the rich intertidal zone - exploring mudflats, molluscs and migratory bird habitats.
Walks commence 8am, 9am and 10am - places are limited, so please register in advance and arrive 10 mins prior at the Moreton Bay Discovery Centre.

Suitable for ages 4 and up, children 4-14 must be accompanied by an adult.
Please wear covered shoes (that can get wet), sun protection and bring a water bottle.

Between Sunday 2 February 2020 8:00 AM and Sunday 2 February 2020 10:00 AM

Register here:


Departing from and held in partnership with the Moreton Bay Discovery Centre.
William Gunn Jetty, 1 Wyvernleigh Close, Manly, Qld 4179

Extension to submissions for EPBC Act review

The Australian Government has announced an independent review of the Environment Protection Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwth), as required every 10 years. The EPBC Act is the most important piece of legislation underpinning Australian environmental law and protects matters of national environmental significance. These include:
  • world heritage properties
  • national heritage places
  • wetlands of international importance
  • threatened species and ecological communities
  • migratory species
  • Commonwealth marine areas
  • Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
  • Nuclear actions (including uranium mining)
The Moreton Bay Foundation is working on a submission and encourages others with an interest to so.

Previously due in February, the submission date has been extended to Friday 17 April 2020 due to the bushfires.

More information can be found here:

You asked us

Following on from our last issue, more questions raised at our launch are answered below:


Q. Do we know where recreational fishing effort is located and what the true catch is?

A.    Recreational catch data are derived from fishing surveys conducted by DAF in 2000, 2010 and 2013. The 2013 survey estimated there were approximately 642,000 anglers in Queensland, who harvested 8,500t of fish, crabs and prawns. Of these, approximately one-third lived in the Brisbane region around Moreton Bay.

The economic value of Queensland recreational fishing is $400m per year and estimates of direct expenditure from this sector in South East Queensland (including Moreton Bay) range from $156m to $194m. Recreational fishing thus contributes significant economic benefits, especially to the local area, with boating, bait and fishing tackle industries heavily reliant on this activity. More here:

Q41.How can we prevent the bay from being over fished?
Q.17 Why is the voice of fishers always louder than the vast majority who are not fishing? Seems unbalanced
Q.22 Who truly 'owns' the fisheries resources of the Bay. Do commercial and recreational fishers truly have a social contract to have near exclusive use to it?
A. Moreton Bay fishers are currently engaged in the Sustainable Fisheries Strategy 2017-2027 (SFS) in which considerable benefits to fisheries and ecological sustainability will hopefully occur. TMBF is cognizant of the influence of recreational fishers on both the catch and the political process. 

Recreational fishers represent an important economic benefit to Moreton Bay, and commercial fishers provide the south east Queensland community access to locally derived (low carbon footprint) product. Both services require acknowledgement of their respective values and need to be considered as resource allocation moves forward. In addition, Traditional Owner rights of access and involvement in management of these resources need to be facilitated. 

Understanding the sustainable take of the Moreton Bay fishery requires ongoing monitoring and research. It is important that this underpins the issue of commercial licenses and recreational bag and size limits.
Phase 2 of the review of Moreton Bay Marine Park zoning is anticipated in the near future, and the Moreton Bay Foundation will draw on the expertise of our Research Advisory Committee to participate in the consultation process.
More info is available here:


Q24. What strategies could the foundation help to educate readers of marine magazines around appropriate behaviour and conservation practices while fishing and boating and jet skiing?

A. Working with marine magazine producers and other boating and recreation networks to promote responsible behaviour is a great idea– we will follow up that suggestion. TMBF was appreciative of the opportunity to promote the Foundation via some free advertising in the most recent issue of Boat Gold Coast magazine – thanks Rosalee!

What’s on


Redlands 2030 World Wetlands Day


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