Island Rescue

Island Rescue Australia

Reef Catchments is part of the Island Rescue Alliance, a growing collection of government and non-government organisations, investors, and individuals, which aims to conserve and restore biological diversity on Australia’s islands.

The mission of Island Rescue Australia is to work together to conserve the unique biodiversity supported by Australia’s islands, and in doing so, to enhance and sustain the social and economic prosperity of island communities.

Regional Islands

The islands of the Mackay, Whitsunday, and Isaac region are home to some of the worlds most beautiful and critically endangered habitats in Australia including beach scrub and littoral rainforest. The islands also provide habitat or nesting ground for vulnerable animals including the Proserpine wallaby and the green and flatback turtles  and the beach stone-curlew.

Islands provide unique opportunities in conservation due to the ability to completely eradicate feral animals and pests. Islands have successfully reintroduced threatened animals and are now seen as safe harbours for conservation into the future.

Our Islands, however, are under threat from development, climate change, invasive weeds, and marine debris, all of which threaten to disrupt the delicate ecosystem balance.

Island Expeditions

Wildmob and Reef Catchments work in partnership with Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service to rehabilitate and conserve the islands of the Mackay, Whitsunday, Isaac regions. Wildmob, with a focus on education, runs Island Conservation Expeditions which provide volunteers with the opportunity to contribute to a hands-on program focused on island rehabilitation and conservation.

To date, island works have focused on weed treatment and the removal of marine debris. Read more about the program and get involved here at Wildmob.

Brampton Island Conservation Case Study

Brampton Island.Download the case study

Island Conservation

Ecobarge Clean Seas Inc and Reef Catchments work together to target marine debris through reducing land-based litter and physical litter removal on islands of the Whitsundays. Ecobarge has removed an incredible 179,000 kg of marine debris from the Whitsunday Islands since the program began in 2009! This program undoubtedly saves countless numbers of marine life each year from cruel injuries and even deaths caused by litter. You can become involved in the program, which is run by volunteers, by contacting Ecobarge Clean Seas Inc.

The region’s photogenic national parks include rainforests, eucalypt forests, beaches, rocky headlands (covered in hoop pines), and volcanic rock formations. Visitors can camp and enjoy a variety of bush walks, or water sports, or just sit back and enjoy the serenity.

Visitor guide Mackay coast and island national parks
Visitor guide Whitsunday National Parks

Saltwater People

Many Traditional Owners throughout this region have a strong connection to the ocean and islands. They are called Saltwater People.
Over many thousands of years, Saltwater People have played a large role in shaping and influencing our islands and the marine environment in general. These islands are a part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, and one of the ways we can protect the Outstanding Universal Value of the reef is to respect and preserve the cultural heritage and the connection to country that Saltwater People retain.
Click here to learn what types of cultural heritage are present throughout the islands, and how to appreciate it respectfully.

Key Contact

Cass Hayward from Reef Catchments.
P (07) 4968 4206
M 0429 155 841
E Cass Hayward