Posted on 01/09/2016 by Phillip Island Nature Parks

Marine conference delegates visit Phillip Island

Coastal and marine advocates from across Australia recently attended the 2016 Coast to Coast Conference in Melbourne, with a view to better understand and respond to coastal and marine issues and sustainable outcomes.

Phillip Island Nature Parks welcomed approximately 55 of the conference delegates to Phillip Island to learn about habitat rehabilitation for the little penguin colony, long term research, new and innovative projects, and self-funding as a management model.

Dr Roz Jessop, Nature Parks’ Environment Manager, said: “This conference offers delegates the chance to raise the profile of marine and coastal environments and their values, and also provides a variety of networking opportunities.”

“This field trip was an important opportunity for delegates to witness first-hand the results of our ongoing habitat rehabilitation program, especially on the Summerland Peninsula, where they met with our rangers in the field. They were generally quite amazed at the speed of the transformation from the former housing estate into penguin habitat,” Dr Jessop continued.

Delegates were impressed by the long term marine and coastal research that underpins management of the Nature Parks, following a presentation by Dr Peter Dann, Nature Parks’ Research Manager. They also enjoyed a presentation from Michael Dortmans from the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning about erosion in Western Port.

Nature Parks’ Major Projects Manager Damian Prendergast gave the delegates an understanding of the development of the new Penguin Parade Visitor Centre, along with some of the key management principles for operating successfully as a self-funded organisation.

The Nature Parks’ Wildlife Clinic and Rehabilitation Centre also opened its doors to a number of the delegates who enjoyed a talk from Wildlife Rehabilitation Ranger Jodi Bellett before heading back to Melbourne. The conference concluded on 01 September.