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Moreton Bay Marine Park is one of the largest estuarine bays in Australia and is unique in the fact that is has both tropical and temperate marine species. The Marine Park is situated between the coastal shore line of the South-East Queensland, from Sunshine Coasts Caloundra to Runaway Bay at the Gold Coast. Bribie Island, Moreton Island, North and South Stradbroke Island are part of the Marine Park, along with a number of smaller bay islands such as Coochi and Peel Island.
Moreton Bay Marine Park has a diversity of marine life, including turtles, wobbegong sharks, sting rays, manta ray, gropers, tropical and reef fish, bottlenose dolphins, dugongs to name a few.
The park is also abundant in coral growth, particularly around Curtin Artifical Reef and The Wrecks - Moreton Island, both locations a popular place to snorkel and scuba dive.
During the winter months (June till October), the Marine Park sees over 18,000 humpback whales swim through it's waters on their north migration. This is a thrilling sight which you can experience up close with the Moreton Bay Regions very own Whale Watching Cruise. You might even catch a glimpse of a baby whale heading back south with it's mother, or see the magnificent super star of the waters Migaloo or MJ, the white albino humpback whales of the Australian East Coast.
Did you know, that humpback whales will always follow the migration path that they were born on and at birth, they can weigh up to 900 kilos!
To protect and sustain this biodiversity, the park has a Zoning Plan which dictates where and what activities are acceptable. Zones are not identifiable out on the water, so make sure you are well aware of the boundaries before throwing the line in, as fines an be incurred. There are four zone types:
Yellow Zones throughout the park are predominately close to the shoreline. Prohibited activities include:
The zone keen anglers need to be aware of is Green Zoned areas, of which there are 13. Green Zones are 'no-take areas', meaning all forms of fishing and collection are prohibited. Prohibited activities include;
Green Zoned areas include part of Pummicestone Channel, Hays Inlet, Goodwin Beach, Woody Point and Bramble Bay.
Boat ramps have signage with information on these Green Zones or you can download your own map from Queensland National Parks HERE. It is also important to note that there is only two lines and a maximum of two hook per angler. Maximum of four pots per person and absolutely no collection of coral from the park.
Before you head out onto the water with your power boat or kayak, it's a good idea to familarise yourself with the Moreton Bay Marine Park Beacon to Beacon Guides. The waters of Moreton Bay can be treacherous, so be prepared. The guides offer detailed maps and information around channel depth and local hazards.
Be sure you have the correct licences, permits and gear before heading out. For a list of local boat ramps in the Moreton Bay Region CLICK HERE.
Ferryman Cruises provides frequent eco-tours of the beautiful Pumicestone Passage. Enjoy the sights and sounds of this beautiful stretch of water which is home to a diversity of birds as well as marine life. Tours range from 3 to 5 hours, are wheelchair friendly. Or book into on of the sunset tours for something truly magical.
Moreton Bay Whale Watching Cruise offers the very best in certified ecotourism whale watching tours in South East Queensland, with a 100% guarantee that whales will be spotted during your tour. The service operates from June to October annually, departing from Redcliffe Jetty.
Dolphin Wild is a must do tour if you love dolphins, dugongs and marine life. The provider also offers a guided snorkeling and fish feeding tour of the The Wrecks - Moreton Island as an optional extra to the days excitment.