Going nuts for Airlie!
All over the world the coconut palm is celebrated as a thing of great beauty and a provider of almost everything a human being could ever need.
Coconuts offer us sweet, drinkable juice. Their flesh provides nourishing food. Their husks make cups, toys and a dozen different kinds of implement. Their fronds provide baskets, hats, mats and roofing and their timbers, too many items to list.
"It seems that, here in the Whitsundays, we think of coconut palms as an annoyance, as a source of dangerous missiles, as simply unsightly refuse; rubbish to be disposed of."
So says local activist Rory McCourt who adds "The coconut is not a nuisance, not a scrap of litter. It's one of nature's great gifts."
"In the Whitsundays we have current plans to remove, to destroy, at least forty of our gracefully arching mature coconut palms - and who knows how many more in the future."
"It seems that the relatively modest cost of occasional de-nutting is not worth paying."
Years ago there was a small business that harvested coconuts under the banner, "All we want are your nuts!"
"So, how about, instead of perceiving the town's coconuts as a costly inconvenience, a problem to be disposed of, we try to see them as an opportunity.
"Why not consider doing something positive with them. At the appropriate time each year, when the bulk of the area's coconuts are ripening why not persuade our tourism marketing gurus to consider a celebratory event?
"How about, 'The Airlie Beach Coconut Harvest Festival? Mr McCourt concluded.
We would be nuts if this is not considered; in the meantime Keep the Coconuts!
Blooming Jellyfish burgers!
The rise of jellyfish populations in many of the world's oceans may be more than just an inconvenience for swimmers who want to take a dip.
According to expert Lisa-ann Gershwin, the rapid growth over the last few decades of these creatures is a sign of the planet's deteriorating marine health,
In her new book 'Stung! On Jellyfish Blooms and the Future of the Ocean', Gershwin says that these "enchanting and lovely" invertebrates are in fact harbingers of the health of the oceans.
Unfortunately, the rise in jellyfish numbers is far from benign. Gershwin said that jellyfish are able to "take this damaged ecosystem and actually drive it to a much worst state."
Although jellyfish rank low on the evolutionary tree - they don't even have brains - they have the unique trait of eating things higher up on the food chain than themselves things that are bigger, faster and smarter than they are.
An example, she points to a species of jellyfish called Mnemiopsis leidyi that was accidentally introduced into the Black Sea in the early 1980s.
"Within just a few years, it had taken over so completely with this double whammy of predation and competition that Mnemiopsis was now 95 per cent of the biomass in the Black Sea," Gershwin said. "Ninety-five per cent of every living thing is this one species of jellyfish."
Gershwin said she fears that the biodiversity of the world's water will eventually resemble that of the Precambrian era, when oceans were ruled by jellyfish and mammals and reptiles did not exist.
Another source is Daniel Pauly: Jellyfish Burgers or How We Changed the Oceans and They Changed Us.
Mermaid Parade Saved!
The thirty-year-old Coney Island Mermaid Parade was nearly shut down by Superstorm damage to Coney Island New York USA earlier this year.
Through crowd funding online many small donors gave over $102,000, beating the $100,000 fundraising target. $10,000 was raised in a benefit concert headlined by Amanda Palmer, an entertainer who champions causes other than just mermaids.
The parade, scheduled for June 22, attracts over 750,000 spectators and is an annual kickoff to the summer season, featuring artists and performers in wild and imaginative costumes, with an aquatic theme.
Port of Airlie public boat ramp - pile driving for the construction of abutment and queuing pontoon on the public boat ramp has commenced and will continue this month. Pile driving work is being carried out by barge 'Invincible' that will display appropriate signals. Mariners should use caution and give a wide berth when approaching the area. AUS chart 268
Unsafe Passage - There have been at least three notices issued about the unlit front and rear leading lights on Daydream Island, which mark Unsafe Passage, between North Molle and Mid Molle Islands. AUS charts 252 & 253
Fair winds to Ye!
Ten years online -- waterfront.blogspot.com.au