Please select your home edition
Edition
Pantaenius FBW Comprehensive 728x90

Night patrols on the rise across the Great Barrier Reef

by GBRMPA 15 Jun 2019 21:00 UTC

Increased surveillance in the southern Great Barrier Reef means if you fish illegally in no-take green zones you will get caught regardless of the time of day.

Night-time patrols recently spotted two vessels fishing illegally in waters in the Eastern Warrego's, off Seventeen Seventy.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's newly-established compliance team based in Gladstone are focusing on fishers poaching from no-take green zones, particularly at night.

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority assistant director surveillance Chris Cochrane said patrols continued to target areas where recreational fishers were intentionally and consistently fishing illegally.

"While most people out in the marine parks are doing the right thing and following the zoning rules, some fishers believe they can poach at night from green zones and won't get detected. We are intent on dispelling this belief," Mr Cochrane said.

"Modern patrol vessels designed to target poachers that threaten the health of the Reef travel at high speed, operate in offshore areas, and carry out night operations.

"The vessels also have "over-the-horizon" radars to locate and track small vessels day or night, which is very useful in locating fishers who turn off their lights to avoid being caught in no-take zones."

The two recent night time detections in no-take areas in the Eastern Warrego's are currently under investigation, with a view to the issuing of fines where sufficient evidence exists.

Mr Cochrane said those caught fishing in a green zone can expect a $2100 infringement notice, or potential prosecution in court.

"Great Barrier Reef Marine Park visitors should know where they are going and what's allowed before heading onto the water or islands," he said.

"Boaties should use a GPS unit, know how zones are displayed on it, and cross-check their location with a free zoning map.

"The Authority's Eye on the Reef app also provides zoning information the app is available for download on the App Store and Google Play."

Patrols are conducted throughout the entire Great Barrier Reef Marine Park by the Authority and Reef Joint Field management Program partners Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.

These are supported by partners including Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol, Maritime Border Command, Queensland Water Police, and Maritime Safety Queensland.

Related Articles

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park increase fines
Recreational fishers caught poaching from no-take zones now face a $2220 fine From 1 July 2020, fines for illegal activities in the Marine Park increased. Recreational fishers caught poaching from no-take Marine National Park (Green) Zones now face a $2220 fine. Posted on 17 Jul
Starfish a popular meal at the Great Barrier Reef
Eaten by many more fish species than previously suspected Crown-of-thorns starfish are on the menu for many more fish species than previously suspected. Posted on 22 May
Spike in Great Barrier Reef zoning offences
39 illegal activities detected across the Marine Park Despite issuing a pre-Easter warning, Great Barrier Reef authorities were disappointed to encounter a high volume and array of illegal activity threatening the health of the Reef, and the communities dependent on it, over the long weekend. Posted on 28 Apr
Great Barrier Reef Patrols over Easter
Reef authorities are continuing vital work to protect the reef While the past few weeks have been challenging for communities worldwide, Reef authorities are continuing vital work to protect the Great Barrier Reef; particularly in the face of severe and widespread coral bleaching. Posted on 9 Apr
Reef poachers fined
A series of no-take green zone poaching offences recently went before the Cairns Marine parks helicopter patrols across North Queensland are continuing to catch fishers out poaching in green zones, with several offenders fined and convicted last month. Posted on 8 Aug 2019
Protect your special patch of the Reef
'Protect Your Patch' to help protect the iconic Great Barrier Reef Residents and visitors in the Capricorn Coast region are being encouraged to 'Protect Your Patch' to help protect the iconic Great Barrier Reef. Posted on 10 Jul 2019
Protect your special patch of the Reef
Whitsundays residents and tourists encouraged to report people fishing illegally Residents and tourists in the Whitsundays are being encouraged to report people fishing illegally in no-take green zones of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Posted on 14 Apr 2019
Caught in the act
Commercial fishers fined for fishing in no-take zone Two commercial fishers were convicted and fined $9000 by the Mackay Magistrates Court for illegal fishing offences in a no-take green zone in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Posted on 1 Mar 2019
From Blueprint to action: progress report
Plan for Great Barrier Reef Blueprint for resilience We've released From Blueprint to action: progress report — it outlines the progress and successes one year on from the release of our Great Barrier Reef Blueprint for resilience. Posted on 7 Dec 2018
Seaforth residents urged to report poaching
The community of central Queensland town Seaforth is being urged to report people fishing illegally Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority field management and compliance assistant director Andrew Simpson said the community was encouraged to get on board to help protect their patch. Posted on 11 Nov 2018
Marina Exchange FOOTER 1