Marine Protected Areas tend not to get the same air-time as their terrestrial cousins, but Conservation Management is working to change all that. We have recently been working with Parks Australia staff on adapting the Conservation Standards for use in the Australian Marine Parks context (see blog post here).
The Gooniyandi Rangers are in Fitzroy Crossing, Kimberley Region, North-west Australia. They help look after one the most important river system in Northern Australia – The Fitzroy River.
It’s been a privilege to work alongside the Gooniyandi Rangers as they start a new era of indigenous land management.
Offshore marine parks are not as widely understood as terrestrial protected areas; however, people depend on the marine environment to support livelihoods, recreation, and cultural connections as well as the provision of ecosystem services. It is important to improve our understanding of this space and explore the threats to these environments as well as opportunities emerging from them.
“Heading north again?”, a friend asks me. My answer, “yeah, it’s gonna be a cracker this one”.
There have been a few reflective moments in my career where I find myself feeling extremely privileged to be doing what I do. Then I remember it takes a couple of decades to get here, with a lot of support from family and significant personal and professional strategy.
Iconic journey, that’s the only way to describe travelling up the Gibb River Road in April after a stonker (big) wet season. The road, a single bush track with green grass creeping up to its edges, is waiting to be graded or mowed down by tourists. The intersecting ranges are broken up by full waterways lined with paperbarks and Pandanus. We are travelling through Wilinggin Country, home of the Ngarinyin people.