The Great Australia Bight is home to the blue humpback whale. (Photo – ABC Open: Anne Powell)
There are beautiful places worth saving. The Sea Shepherd had set sail for the Great Australian Bight for the first time in August 2016 and the ocean conservation group found places like Nuyts Reef, Isles of St Francis, the Bunda Cliffs, the Head of Bight and the Pearson Islands.
The group said it discovered one of the world’s best kept secrets – rich in biodiversity. The Bight is home to Blue, Minke, Fin and Humpback whales, and is one of the planet’s most significant Southern Right whale nurseries, Sea Shepherd Australia’s Managing Director Jeff Hansen said.
Many fish species like the critically-endangered Southern Blue Fin tuna, Great White shark, Mako shark, seals, dolphins and penguins are in abundance in the Bight. It is truly alive; a place that is rare, unique and globally significant, with many of the off-shore islands on par with the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Galapagos Islands.
Sea Shepherd had launched Operation Jeedara that showcased a truly remarkable place – one of Mother Nature’s greatest and grandest shows on Earth. The operation sent BP and Chevron to pull out of their oil drilling activities from the Bight.
Southern bluefin tuna circling inside a transport net. (Photo: Greenpeace/AAP)
Sea Shepherd’s M/Y Steve Irwin is again aiming to set sail to the Bight with its international crews in March this year, but it needs funds to complete an engine overhaul.
Hansen said the crew will take cameras below the waves to reveal more secrets from this natural wonderland. “We’ll explore and document the incredible wilderness that lies protected by the boundaries of the Pearson Islands Sanctuary Zone, the Nuyts Archipelago, and the Bunda Cliffs Sanctuary Zone,” he added.
The bight is also a home to seals. (Photo: Australia.com)
At the completion of the Bight expedition, the M/Y Steve Irwin and crew will set their sights on the Adani coal mine on Operation Reef Defence.
“From everyone here at Sea Shepherd, thank-you for your help to get our flagship, the M/Y Steve Irwin back on the water. We have some way to go but with your continued support we will be on our way to the Great Australian Bight,” Jeff said.