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Whitsunday 2016 Clean Up

3rd - 6th November 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants - EXPEDITION
Blacksmith, Goldsmith, Thomas, Silversmith, Ingot Islands

This was Eco Barge's third Southern Island Expedition, based again on Lindeman Island we were able to visit the islands further south, this year we visited 18 beaches in total. Some beaches had been visited last year during the expedition and we found these beaches to still be fairly clean, however most of the beaches visited had never been clean. Goldsmith Island was found to be the dirtiest with 1,950 kilograms of marine debris coming off that island alone. The middle day through us out a bit with some bad weather preventing us from clean as much as we had hoped. A huge thank you to the expedition team whose enthusiasm and hard work never dropped!

2,530 kgs collected

18th October 2016

Reef Catchments
Whitsunday Island

What a fantastic day! it was lovely to get back out on the water, we headed around Whitsunday Island visiting 7 different beaches, Chance bay, Turtle bay and Solace Bay. The first beach had lots of tiny bits of plastic, however the rest of the beaches were full of larger items mixed up with the tiny plastics. One of our volunteers had previoulsly cleaned one of the beaches but couldnt fir the bags in her boat so left them at the high tide mark, it was interesting to see how much more marine debris had accumulated on that beach since she cleaned it.

11 volunteers
245 kgs collected

2nd August 2016

Reef Catchments
Hook Island

Today we headed round to Hook Island and cleaned bottle top beach, Saba Bay, Mackerel Beach and more. The first few beaches we visited had a bit of marine debris but nothing too significant, this is great to see as we do all prefer clean beaches. However the last small bay we visited was riddled with marine debris from large plastic items to tiny microplastics. Our amazing volunteers worked hard and it was a great group effort to clean this final beach. 

11 volunteers
161 kgs collected

24th June 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-up
Cape Conway

Another perfect glassy day out on the water, so we used this opportunity to head straight to Cape Conway, we hav not been out there in a while and its a known spot to trap marine debris, we were right there was heaps of plastics both large and small and we filled the barge fairly quickly. We will have to go back and visit that spot again soon!

14 volunteers
352 kgs collected

23rd June 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-up
Cane Cockies Beach and South Molle Island

After having reports from locals that Cane Cockies Beach in Shute Harbour was really dirty we headed straight there, and it was filthy! lots of camping debris along with lots of plastics too. We then headed over the South Molle where we met up with four Southern Cross Sailing Vessels who were doing a four day charter with 84 students from Rockhampton. The students helped us clean pretty much the whole East side of South Molle and did a fantastic job!

12 volunteers (Plus 84 students and 4 teachers)
399 kgs collected

22nd June 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-up
Double Bay and Georges Point

Today we headed back to Double Bay to collect the rest of the debris that we could not fit in the barge yesterday. At Double Bay we found lots of rubbish left behind by campers. We then headed to Georges Point to remove more plastics from there too. The weather was great and all the volunteers had a fantastic day!

10 volunteers
498 kgs collected

21st June 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-up
Gumbrell Island, Armit Island, Double Cones, Grassy Island and Double Bay

We headed north today as the wind picked up a bit in the morning preventing us from crossing the passage. This turned out to work well as we found a lot of marine debris, on Armit Island we found a large boat wreckage which weighed an amazing 300kg. Double Cones, Gumbrell and Grassy island were fairly clean however there were a lot of smaller micro plastics found. At Double bay on the mainland there was an old derelict campsite which had a lot of rubbish around it. 

9 volunteers
505 kgs collected

10th June 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-up
Lindeman Island

Yet another glass out, we have had such an amazing week! today we went back to Lindeman to finish cleaning the beach we started yesterday, we found a lot of large plastic items in the high tide line as well as some broken up plastics in the mid tide range. We visited the beach with the wreck on again to remove some more of the debris. 

12 volunteers
789 kgs collected

9th June 2016

Reef Catchments
Little Lindeman and Lindeman Island

It was another glass out today on the water, we headed straight to Little Lindeman which we have not cleaned before. From a distance the beach looked pretty clean however once we got on we realised it had a fair bit of marine debris on it. We then headed to Lindeman and cleaned up some more of the boat wreck, before heading to a new beach on Lindeman, as the barge was a max capacity we could only clean half the beach and we will go back again to get the rest. 

11 volunteers
717 kgs collected

8th June 2016

Reef Catchments
South Molle Island and Lindeman Island

We headed straight out to Lindeman Island to tackle some more of the boat wreckage there, after Lindeman we went to South Molle Island were we found a mixture of both large plastics including lots of plastic drums as well as lots of micro-plastics and bottle tops. It was another fantastic day on the water with perfect weather.

12 volunteers
839 kgs collected

7th June 2016

Reef Catchments
Cole Island, Pentecost Island and Whitsunday Island

Another picture perfect day out on the water, we headed to Cole Island, which we have never cleaned before, there was not a lot of plastics although a very large cardinal marker was found weighing 400kg (amazingly the volunteers got this onto the barge!!) along with a wheel, and a broken kayak. Pentecost Island had a 20L tub full of oil. Then we headed round to turtle bay which had heaps of small plastics.

9 volunteers
578 kgs collected

6th June 2016

Reef Catchments
Shaw and Lindeman Islands

The temperature has certainly dropped and the volunteers felt it this morning. We headed straight to Lindeman Island to remove more of the boat wreckage washed up there. We then headed over the Shaw Island where we found lots of small plastic pieces.

11 volunteers
674 kgs collected

26th May 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up
Maher, Shaw and Lindeman Islands

Another great day on the Islands at the southern end of the Whitsundays, and a lot of marine debris was removed. The top item found was timber from boat wreckages however there was also a lot of plastics washed up too. We have a full boat today and a pretty much full barge on the journey home. 

12 volunteers
381 kgs collected

10th May 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up
Lindeman Island

We had a record breaking collection today! We headed out to Lindeman Island and it was a perfect day out on the water. Two beaches near the old resort on Lindeman were filthy with plastics as well as a lot of boat wreckage. We ended up reaching the max load that the barge could carry so had to head home. Although there is still a lot of rubbish that remains so we will be heading back there soon! 

12 volunteers
1027 kgs collected

9th May 2016

Sunsuper
Hazelwood Island

Today was a slightly different marine debris removal trip, we headed straight out to Whitehaven Beach where we released Stumpy, our beautiful green turtle who has been in care for 8 months. Stumpy severed his front flipper off as he got it caught in fishing line. This release was a magical moment for all the volunteers. We then headed round to Hazelwood Island for a beach clean-up, we cleaned six beaches in total and found a mixture of micro plastics within the pumice along with a fair few larger plastic items too.

11 volunteers
90 kgs collected

8th May 2016

Reef Catchments
South Molle, Long Island, Hamilton Island and Dent Island

The wind picked up a little today causing it to be a bit bumpy and wet out to the islands, South Molle was our first stop with lots of micro plastics which was time consuming, also found a message in a bottle which had been in the water since August 2015 and came from Bundaberg. Long Island was our next stop with lots of larger pieces. We then headed to Hamilton Island (by the runway) and found lots more debris there. Overall a great day out!

10 volunteers
162 kgs collected

7th May 2016

Cruise Whitsundays
Grimston Point

Today was our first Eco Ambassador event, the school children came out on the barge (along with some parents), not only did we do a beach clean-up at Grimston Point removing 57 kgs but we also released one of our turtles from care Big Bertha, this was a great day for the kids who learnt all about marine debris and turtles. Grimston Point also had lots of rubbish for the kids to collect.

20 volunteers
57 kgs collected

6th May 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up 
Hook Island: Saba and Mackerel Bay

A small group of volunteers headed out today but did an amazing job! Unlike the other beaches we have been to recently there was a lack of micro plastics and a lot of whole/large plastic items. Due to the tides we wear able to get down to the back of Saba Bay however there was a large amount of floating pumice which was covering floating plastics which we struggled to get. 

8 volunteers
189 kgs collected

4th May 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up 
Whitsunday Island, Crayfish Bay and Turtle Bay

Another perfect day on the water, but as the tides are so big at the moment we had to choose our locations carefully and even then our awesome volunteers had a bit of a walk to and from the boat. Turtle Bay had lots of rubbish which was mainly micro plastics and bottle tops. One very large bit of rope was found at Turtle Bay weighing a huge 30 kg. All the volunteers did amazingly so thank you all!

12 volunteers
134 kgs collected

3rd May 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up 
Grassy Island, Rattray and Georges Point

At last, perfect weather, today was a true glass-out! Due to the tides we headed north to the steeper beaches. Grassy and Little Grassy had next to no marine debris which is great. We then headed to Rattray which had a build-up of tiny plastics along with a couple of bits of boat. Georges point was where we collected the most rubbish including a large hot water system! A great day had by all.

12 volunteers
181 kgs collected

19th March 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up 
Grimston Point

Another great day out on Eco Barge, with the weather being a bit unpredictable we didnt go too far. An amazing 395kg of marine debris was removed from beaches at Grimston Point and Double Cone Island. The item that we found most of was black plastic drinking straws... there were heaps! Amazing work from all the volunteers today, this was the highest kilo count so far for 2016!

12 volunteers
395 kgs collected

29th February 2016

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Great Barrier Reef Clean-Up 
South Molle, Mainland

Due to a predicted strong wind warning today, we headed to previously unvisited mainland beaches first, we found a complete half cabin boat all smashed up along with other bits of plastic debris. The weather predictions were wrong and the wind didn't pick up so we headed over the South Molle Island to clean the usual beaches there finding again lots of micro plastics. 

11 volunteers
371 kgs collected

27th February 2016

Reef Catchments
Cape Conway and Long Island

A picture perfect day, we headed straight out to Cape Conway (Genesta Bay) and there we visited 6 beaches, all these beaches were not heavily impacted but did contain lots of ting bits of broken plastics which can be the hardest and most time consuming marine debris to collect. As we were about to head over to Hook Island we spotted a large item on the rocks in one of the bays, it turned out to be a huge 'special marker' buoy which had broken off its mooring! We then headed over to Hook Island and cleaned one beach there before heading back.

10 volunteers
158 kgs collected

20th February 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Grimtsone, Double Cone and Little Armit

Again it was found that the majority of the beaches and bays were fairly clean, with the debris that was present looking like it had washed up recently, a three metre dinghy was found on Little Armit. Overall it was a great day out on the water and it's really good to see that the Islands are not that impacted at the moment.

12 volunteers
218 kgs collected

19th February 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Saba Bay and Mackerel Bay, Hook Island

The majority of marine debris found today was found in Saba Bay, with the tides we were able to get up the back to the area where a lot of the marine debris collates. 

10 volunteers
160 kgs collected

18th February 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Gumbrell, Ratray and Gloucester Islands

First stop today was Gumbrell Island, we targeted two small rocky beaches but they had little rubbish. Rattray island north beach was also clean however the south beach had had a large drift of pumice stone so lots of small plastic fragments had been caught in it. Gloucester Island also had mainly small fragments of plastic, this meant we did not get the highest of kilo counts today however all the volunteers worked extremely hard all day! 

9 volunteers
138 kgs collected

17th February 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Hamilton Island and Whitsunday Island

Another warm day out today with hardly any wind, we headed straight over to Hamilton Island and cleaned two beaches there, these beaches were full of lots of tiny pieces of plastic. We then moved onto Whitsunday Island and cleaned four beaches there, again lots of little pieces of debris but overall the beaches did not seem too messy! On the way home we stopped at the infamous "rope pile" and hacked away and the rope to reduce the pile, it's going to be a long time until we defeat that!

11 volunteers
261 kgs collected

16th February 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Grassy Island, Georges point and Pigeon Island

Beautiful day out on the water with a slow start to the trip as not many of the beaches were that impacted with marine debris (which is a good thing!!), however when we got to Pigeon Island we found this was heavily impacted and so collected the majority of debris from there. With 11 volunteers an amazing 11 beaches were cleaned in total, a fridge was found along with lots of boat parts.

11 volunteers
245 kgs collected

7th January 2016

Everyone's Environment Grants
Hook Island

A super-hot day out at the islands today, and with very little shade on the beaches all the volunteers did an amazing job considering. We went to four beaches on Hook Island, finding the most debris on Mackerel Bay. All the debris found today were little broken bits of plastic, so it was time consuming to collect but definitely worth the time as they can be the worst bits! The wind picked up on the way back and we got a bit of spray in the boat - quite refreshing actually!!

12 volunteers
107 kgs collected




















































Marine debris removed from the
Whitsunday islands since July 2009
= 153,152 kilograms