Funding boost to cull coral-eating starfish in Great Barrier Reef
Posted 12 September 2017
A third vessel is set to be deployed in the waters between Port Douglas and Townsville to cull coral-eating starfish, thanks to a $14.4 million funding injection from the Federal Government.
The funding will be provided to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), and will support all three vessels charged with culling the crown-of-thorns starfish until 2020.
Minister for the Environment and Energy Josh Frydenberg said the funding boost will greatly increase the GBRMPA’s capacity to protect the reef.
“By increasing the number of control vessels, we will significantly bolster the ability of the reef to recover not only from the crown-of-thorns predation, but also other impacts, including damage from cyclones and bleaching.”
Frydenberg said control vessels have helped keep the starfish population below outbreak levels in key reefs in the Cairns region, and the additional vessel will enable the expansion of efforts in the central section of the Marine Park.
GBRMPA will soon seek applications from prospective contractors to deliver the additional activities from the third vessel.
Australia could lose billions if the Great Barrier Reef dies, says new report
Coral sample study links reef health to water quality