Learning the ropes
Learning the ropes Malcolm Wells

Cap Coast residents value natural spaces at Sandy Point

THE Sandy Point Discovery Day went off without a hitch on Saturday, with the afternoon storm waiting for the activities to conclude before the skies opened up to deliver some welcome rain.

The day was supported by the Fitzroy Basin Association through funding from the Australian Government and saw a crowd of over 115 people coming along to enjoy the natural beauty of Corio Bay and to learn more about why the area is listed as a Ramsar site, which recognises it as a wetland of international importance.

One of the highlights of the day for participants was the Paddle Capricornia kayak tours that provided the opportunity for people to experience the beauty of the bay from the water, and Alison Jones from the Keppel Island Conservation Community brought along a drone and captured some amazing imagery from the air.

President of the Sunshine Coast Surfrider Foundation branch Craig McIntyre looks after an extensive stretch of coastline from Caloundra to Noosa and on to Double Island Point. He spoke about the regular beach clean-ups and dune care activities that they conduct in their region, while local Surfrider Foundation president John McGrath was able to enthuse everyone with stories of the Big Dune Surfing Reserve and the group's many years of effort to ensure that it's better protected and managed for future generations.

Participants heard from a variety of presenters including Paul Harris from Queensland Parks and Wildlife Queensland about the management of the Sandy Point area; Dr Bob Newby from Native Plants Queensland shared details about the many beach scrub species that grow in the area; and Frank Mills from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection advised on how to be "croc wise".

The Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland representative, Andrew Dinwoodie, shared information about the local wildlife. He said: "It's great to see the enthusiastic interest shown by the people that participated in the day. This helps the community to develop an interest in the conservation of our precious native wildlife which is particularly important for those species who depend on our endangered beach scrubs for survival."

Capricornia Catchments executive officer Jeff Krause said: "This is the third time we have hosted this event in partnership with the Fitzroy Basin Association and we are very encouraged by the increasing numbers of people who are interested in getting involved. It shows that as a community we value our natural places and want to learn about how to look after them appropriately into the future."

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