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50,000 More Eyes to Protect Bay Marine Wildlife

19 November 2015

The Boating Industry Association of Victoria and the AGL Marine Response Unit today launched Operation Bay Watch, which is aimed at providing 50,000 more eyes to undertake surveillance for injured marine life on Port Phillip and Western Port Bays.

The campaign launched this morning at the Royal Victorian Motor Yacht Club in Williamstown with a briefing by the AGL Marine Response Unit and the Boating Industry Association of Victoria.    

Mark Keenan, Coordinator of the AGL Marine Rescue Unit said the involvement of the Victorian Boating Industry Association of Victoria, with its direct link to the boating community, would provide a major boost to being able to identify the location of marine life at risk.

“A vital part of the program is for people reporting the location of the threatened marine wildlife to be able to provide us with accurate information to locate the seal or bird as quickly as possible,” Mr Keenan said.

In December 2013, AGL partnered with the Melbourne Zoo to establish the AGL Marine Response Unit, Victoria’s first dedicated unit to respond to calls for assistance involving Victoria’s marine wildlife.

AGL General Manager Marketing & Retail Customers, Mark Brownfield said AGL was proud to continue its support of the AGL Marine Response Unit.

“Each year the unit responds to hundreds of cases involving Victoria’s marine wildlife, and it is great that more Victorians are getting involved and reporting cases to the AGL Marine Response Unit,” Mr Brownfield said.

Steven Potts, CEO of the Victorian Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV), said the protection of the Bays environment from plastic and discarded fishing line to protect marine life, and the long term environmental quality of Port Phillip and Western Port Bays, is an important program that needs wide community involvement.

Mr Potts said the BIAV will use its direct channels of communication to the boating industry, boating owners and water based sports, to promote the importance of reporting any injured marine life and disposing of any plastic or fishing line responsibly.

Part of the campaign will be based around ongoing promotion through the BIAV website, social media program, BIAV members and the Melbourne Boat Show.    

Join Operation Bay Watch and Help Protect our Marine Life

  • Add the AGL Marine Response Unit 1300 AGL MRU (1300 245 678) to your mobile phone.
  • If you see injured or distressed marine wildlife contact the AGL Marine Response Unit.
  • Take a photo on your mobile phone of the injured marine wildlife and text it to the AGL Marine Response Unit on 0447 158 676 with a description of the location.
  • Follow up with phone call the AGL Marine Response Unit - 1300 AGL MRU (1300 245 678).