NSW Department of Primary Industries, Lord Howe Island Marine Park News, The Lord Howe Island Signal
Lord Howe Island Marine Park staff have recently commenced a trial of environmentally friendly mooring designs to reduce impacts on coral and seagrass in the lagoon. There are 11 courtesy day-use moorings in the Lord Howe Island lagoon which are maintained by the Lord Howe Island Marine Park. These provide access to popular snorkelling locations for commercial operators, residents, and visitors without the need to anchor. These moorings were originally installed as traditional block and chain swing moorings, which can limit the growth of coral and seagrass within the mooring footprint.
Two of the moorings have now been replaced with Marine Flex units, which have no impact on the seafloor and allow coral and seagrass to re-establish. A further four moorings have been modified with subsurface floats which are also designed to reduce the impacts created by the chain on the seafloor.
Environmental health will be monitored by marine park staff both underwater and by drone in collaboration with Southern Cross University and local drone pilot Blake Thompson. We also welcome any feedback on the use of the trial mooring designs, in person, via phone (02 6563 2367), or email (email@example.com).
This article appeared in The Lord Howe Island Signal, 30 November 2021.