CONTENT FOR SCHOOL NEWSLETTERS 

Writing a feature in your school newsletter is a great way to educate people on our local environment, encourage them to make changes, and spread the word about the wonderful work of your school and EcoMarines!

We suggest you include messages about:

- The good (our beautiful Moreton Bay, marine environment and wild life)

- The bad (environmental issues)

- And, of course, ways people can help protect our environment!

Photos and videos are a great way to capture people's interest. We've included some facts, statistics, video links, and suggestions below. You're also welcome to use our mascot, Finny the Dumbo Octopus!

ABOUT MORETON BAY 

Moreton Bay is such a special place, and being so close to Brisbane, it is very important that everyone helps to look after it!   

Why is Moreton Bay such a special place?

 

  • It is only 14 kilometres from Brisbane city.  

  • It contains many environmentally significant habitats.

  • There are 360 islands in total.

  • It is home to 2 344 plant species, including eight species of mangrove and seven species of seagrass as well as:

  • 2000 loggerhead turtles (Moreton Bay is the most significant habitat in Australia for loggerhead turtles)

  • 600 dolphins (two species of dolphins that inhabit the area, but up to eight species visit)

  • 800-900 dugongs (the largest herd of dugongs ever recorded!)

  • 10,000 green sea turtles

  • Over 120 species of coral

  • Over 1000 species of fish

  • Nine whale species

  • Six of the seven marine turtle species can be found in Moreton Bay!

  • Moreton Bay is home to 25% of ALL Australian bird species.

 

 

FUN FACTS ABOUT OUR MARINE AND WILDLIFE 

  • Kangaroo: Kangaroos give birth to one joey at a time, but they can be raising 3 babies at the same time. They can be pregnant, have a tiny joey in their pouch and a joey out of the pouch! 

  • Pelican: Pelicans can fly 3 kilometres high in the sky. Most school ovals are around 200 metres... so that's like 15 laps of your play area! Pretty high, hey? 

  • Dolphin: Did you know that dolphins have names for each other? They each use a unique whistle to call out to one another.  

  • Whale: Did you know that 9 species of whales visit Moreton Bay! These whales are making their way from their breeding grounds in Antarctica to warmer waters in the tropics for feeding! 

  • Turtle: The temperature of the turtle nests dictates the gender of the eggs when they hatch. Warmer nests lead to more females and cooler nests leads to more males! 

  • Jellyfish: Jellyfish have been around for 650 million years! This means there is evidence that jellyfish have been on the planet before dinosaurs ever were! 

  • Shark: Sharks do not have bones! They are part of a group of animals called Elasmobranchs meaning that their skeleton is made up of cartilage... the same stuff found in your ears and the tip of your nose.  

  • Butterfly: Did you know that each species of butterfly is attracted to different host plants? This is one or two types of plant that different types of butterflies lay their eggs on, and then the caterpillars feed on that same plant. For example, the orchard swaIlowtail butterfly loves to lay eggs on lemon, lime and orange trees. I look for butterflies, caterpillars and eggs whenever I walk past certain trees now!

  • Manta ray: Manta rays are filter feeders. This means that they use their fins around their mouths to push water through their mouths. When this happens, they have special systems in their mouths to comb the water for the smallest of animals to eat.  

  • Coral: Corals are not plants as many people think! Most corals are actually home to millions of tiny animals called polyps. Polyps look like jellyfish and also having stinging cells like jellyfish too. They live together as a colony in a coral skeleton.  

  • Stingrays: Stingrays lay eggs inside their stomachs and the eggs hatch inside. They then give birth to their babies and they fly out like little tacos! 

  • Camels: Camels have three eyelids! Two of them have eyelashes to help protect their eyes from large objects. One of them is actually an invisible eyelid that opens and closes side to side instead of up and down. They use this eyelid when they need protection but also need to see where they are going. 

ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES 

There are lots of topics that you can cover, but we suggest you start by focusing on plastic and other common types of daily waste. These are the easiest things for us to improve! We've included some information and videos you can use to educate people... It's a bit sad to hear and see, but it's important that people know what's going on.

  • ​Did you know that over 30% of turtles in Moreton Bay have ingested some form of plastic?

  • Did you know that there are 5 giant garbage patches in the ocean and one is as big as Queensland?

  • Australians use up to 10 million plastic bags every day – an astonishing 4 billion every year. Of these, approximately 150 million end up in our oceans and waterways, contributing to an estimated 8 million tonnes of plastic dumped into the ocean every year.

  • 1 billion disposable coffee cups are used in Australia every year!

This is the 2 minute trailer for "A Plastic Ocean" documentary. It shows why our work is so important!

Plastic Oceans says plastics are now chocking our oceans. Along with CSIRO, they examine the plastics along our coastline and impacts on animals (On Catalyst, ABV TV).

HOW PEOPLE CAN HELP 

1. Pick up litter! This is so simple yet has a huge positive impact on our environment. 
 

2. Use a reusable water bottle, cups, and shopping bag.
 

3. Wrapper-free lunches. This is good for our health as well as the environment!
 

4. Compost organic waste. This compost bin is a great and simple resource to use at home!
 

5. Replace cling wrap with a beeswax food wrap. These can be found online, in health food shops or DIY.
 

​6. Get a bamboo toothbrush. When it’s time for a new toothbrush, simply remove the plastic bristles and then the handle can be put in the compost where it will decompose!
 

7. Ask for your drink without a plastic straw. You can purchase reuseable straws made from bamboo or stainless steel as an alternative. 
 

8. Make sure you’re recycling right.
 

9. Use environmentally friendly products which contain less harmful chemicals. Most sunscreens contribute to coral bleaching… choose sunscreens that are better for the environment and you!
 

10. Spread the word! Below are a few EcoMarines videos that we encourage you to share and you may also like to share the 2018 Reflection Report so people can learn about all of the great work we are doing together :) 

The Snap, Send, Solve app allows you to report full bins, waste and other feedback to council.

The Brisbane Bin and Recycling app teaches you how to recycle items, and even reminds you when bin days are!

Not sure how to dispose of an item? The Recycle Smart app teaches you how to recycle over 170 items!

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