David Attenborough’s new TV program on Great Barrier Reef

This video from Australia is called GoPro HD: Scuba diving, Great Barrier Reef.

From the Sunday Express in Britain:

Sir David Attenborough, 89, plunges 1000ft below sea level for new documentary

HE MAY be turning 90-years-old next year, but age is nothing but a number to Sir David Attenborough.

By Kirsty McCormack

PUBLISHED: 10:49, Sun, Nov 22, 2015 | UPDATED: 11:03, Sun, Nov 22, 2015

The much-loved broadcaster and naturalist has set a new deep-sea diving record after plunging 1,000ft below sea level for a new documentary.

Almost 60 years after his first scuba dive at Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Attenborough returned and managed to see parts of its flora and fauna which have never before been seen.

The father-of-two was armed with a cameraman and Triton submersible pilot as he filmed one of three documentaries, which are set to be shown on BBC One over Christmas.

Speaking of his latest experience, Attenborough told The Sunday Times: “There is no other one like [Triton], and it took me to a part of the reef which no human being has ever looked at before.”

After coming face-to-face with a 6ft grouper fish – which is not known to exist at such depths – Attenborough said he felt “fantastically privileged”.

“David was, as it were, conversing with the fish, which itself must have been surprised to see a sub for the first time,” said Attenborough‘s producer, Anthony Geffen.

“If he did have any worries or fears about going down to 300 metres, he did not show them. Anyway, curiosity always gets the better of him,” he added.

Attenborough made his first trip to the reef back in 1957 for a Zoo Quest programme. The footage was shot in black-and-white and Attenborough described it as “the most exciting natural history experience of my life”.

Good Great Barrier Reef news from Australia

This 2014 video is about the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

From WWF:

Landmark victory for the Reef, and people power, as dredge spoil dump ban passed in Qld Parliament

Posted on 12 November 2015

New laws banning the sea dumping of industrial dredge spoil have passed in the Queensland Parliament in one of the most significant conservation victories ever for the Great Barrier Reef, said WWF-Australia and the Australian Marine Conservation Society.

WWF-Australia CEO Dermot O’Gorman said that, for more than a century, dumping huge amounts of dredge spoil in Reef waters was the norm. But the continuing decline of Australia’s national icon sparked an international campaign to end this out-dated practice.

“For everyone around the world who cares about the Reef this is a moment to savour,” said Mr O’Gorman.

“We’ve stopped up to 46 million cubic metres of dredge spoil from being dumped in Reef waters in coming years.

“That’s enough dredge spoil to fill 4.6 million dump trucks. If you lined those trucks up end-to-end on Highway 1 they would circle Australia three times.

“This is a huge win for people power. We thank the scientists, mums and dads, Australians young and old, and concerned citizens around the world who have all contributed to this victory. And we thank the Federal and Queensland Governments for listening and acting,” he said.

AMCS Reef Campaign Director Imogen Zethoven said: “The dumping ban becoming law sits alongside the establishment of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, the World Heritage Area and the green zones as landmark moments for Reef protection”.

In June the Federal Government banned the dumping of dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. But in recent years about 80% of dumping has occurred outside the park, closer to shore. The Queensland Government’s Sustainable Ports Development Bill now extends protection to the whole World Heritage Area. It also restricts major new capital dredging to Townsville, Abbot Point, Gladstone, and Hay Point/Mackay.

WWF-Australia and AMCS thanked the Liberal-National Party Opposition and two cross benchers for joining the government to support the Ports Bill.

“It’s particularly heartening to see genuine bipartisan support for the new law, since it fulfils key commitments made to the World Heritage Committee in the Reef 2050 Plan. The Queensland LNP should be congratulated for strengthening their position on Reef protection,” Ms Zethoven said.

Ms Zethoven said many challenges remained.

“The latest dredging plan for Abbot Point could be approved any day, the promised ban on transhipping has not yet been achieved, the Ports Bill doesn’t cover dumping of dredge spoil from smaller projects like marinas, and each year about one million cubic metres of spoil from maintenance dredging is dumped in Reef waters,” she said.

AMCS and WWF want to work with the Queensland Government to reduce that volume per year and minimise the impacts.

WWF-Australia Media Contact:
Mark Symons, Senior Media Officer, 0400 985 571

Sea turtle’s view of the Great Barrier Reef, video

This video says about itself:

9 July 2015

The Great Barrier Reef is home to almost 6000 species. Thanks to GoPro, here’s what the journey through it looks like for one of them: a turtle’s eye view of the Reef

In order to find out more about the level of pollution affecting turtles within the Great Barrier Reef, WWF Australia are working on an innovative project in Queensland with the support of partners Banrock Station Wines Environmental Trust, James Cook University, University of Queensland, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, State and Commonwealth government agencies, Indigenous rangers and local community groups. As part of that project, the opportunity arose to very carefully fit a small GoPro camera to a turtle, to better understand the post-release behavior of tagged green turtles. The result is this amazing video.

A full ban on dumping in the Great Barrier Reef should happen in a matter of months. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Committee voted to maintain pressure on Australia to deliver on its promise to restore the health of the reef. Thank you to our 500,000 WWF supporters who spoke up to defend the reef!

Credit: Dr Ian Bell / Christine Hof

Save Australian Great Barrier Reef coral

This 29 June 2015 video from Australia says about itself:

Great Barrier Reef table coral provides vital shade for passing fish

Read more here.

Great Barrier Reef fish conservation works

This video from Australia says about itself:

Coral trout, Plectropomus leopardus, gather to spawn at dusk around the new moon in spring and early summer at Lizard Island on the northern Great Barrier Reef. Substantial research into the biology and ecology of this highly sought-after table fish has been conducted at the Australian Museum‘s Lizard Island Research Station.

From Science News:

No-fishing scheme in Great Barrier Reef succeeds with valuable fishes

Coral trout thrive but protection has less effect on other reef residents

By Susan Milius

12:15pm, March 26, 2015

An ambitious, hotly debated system of no-take reserves inside the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park has boosted the population of its most commercially valuable fishes, says the first 10-year progress report.

Coral trout (Plectropomus species) are now more common and bigger in protected spots than in comparable places still being fished, researchers say online March 26 in Current Biology. The no-take zones also gave these fish populations more resilience, with ample coral trout that had grown large enough to survive when severe tropical cyclone Hamish hit in 2009.

Will triton snails save Australia’s Great Barrier Reef?

This video from Hawaii is about a triton snail at Lanai lookout in Oahu eating a crown of thorns starfish.

From Wildlife Extra:

Giant snail the solution to Barrier Reef’s Crown-of-thorns problem?

Beautiful as it may be, the Crown-of-thorns Starfish has had a devastating effect on parts of the Great Barrier Reef

Good news for Australia in the battle to save delicate coral organisms on the Great Barrier Reef from annihilation by the rapidly multiplying and invasive Crown-of-thorns Starfish.

Scientists have discovered that the scent of the Triton Sea Snail is repellent to the giant starfish.

The Crown-of-thorns has been responsible for 40 per cent of coral cover loss on the Great Barrier Reef in the past 30 years.

University of the Sunshine Coast senior lecturer Scott Cummins says they have learned that the Triton Snail is one of the starfish’s natural predators.

“We put [the snail] next to the Crown-of-thorns Starfish and they reacted quite obviously,” he says.

“They started to run away, which is quite an important finding because it tells us they do have very poor eyesight, so they are sensing or smelling their main predator.”

At the moment, in an effort to save the reefs, divers search for the starfish and administer a lethal injection which was developed by James Cook University, but this is very costly an labour intensive. This new discovery may provide the long-term answer to the problem.

“The snail is releasing a complex mixture of molecules,” explains Cummins. “We want to narrow it down to exactly what the molecule is then hopefully we can take that and put it into some slow release system on the reef.”

Australian Institute of Marine Science researcher Dr Mike Hall says the decline of the giant Triton Snail, prized for its beautiful shell, might have partially contributed to the population explosion in Crown-of-thorns Starfish that has had such a devastating effect.

The snail has been protected in Australia since the 1960s but it is still extremely rare on the Great Barrier Reef.

One should hope that triton snails will also help against another threat to the Great Barrier Reef: the disastrous environmental policies of Tony Abbott’s government in Australia.

Seven ways the Australian government in totally screwing up the environment: here.

Great Barrier Reef turtles released after rehabilitation

This video from Australia is called Sea turtles released near Great Barrier Reef after rehabilitation.

Daily The Guardian writes about this:

Two sea turtles have been released into the waters of Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef after being rehabilitated in captivity. One of the animals was thought to have been hit by a boat and attacked by a crocodile. Both spent time in a dedicated turtle hospital at the Reef HQ aquarium. In recent years warnings over the impact of coastal industrialisation on turtles and other animals have increased, with seabed dredging to allow the export Queensland’s natural resources of particular concern.