Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Day 5 blog

Waking to another stunning morning in Mulcahy Bay to a light Northerly breeze and small swell.

Team Velocity departed early, heading for Low Rocky Point.
The remaining teams (Wilsons voyager, Rumours and Breaksea) hit the wide open Mulcahy beach, with huge rolling sand dunes and a beautiful little tannin
stained fresh water rivulet.

Since Low Rocky Point was last cleaned in 2014, the numbers were consistent with todays count. Noticeable less large rubbish however, with similar amounts of small plastics, bait savers and rope.

On face value, Mulcahy Bay seemed pristine but after some searching by the remaining group, a total count reached over 8000 items along a circa 1 kilometre stretch. The usual small plastic candidates were again in the thousands, including a my little pony, a plastic polar bear and a "trolls" Pez candy dispenser.

After a warm sunny afternoon, with high cirrus clouds heralding a strong Northerly wind,
we turned tail and headed for Port Davey and safe anchorage.

The final count for both crews exceeded 11,000 individual items, another reminder of the importance in keeping our beaches and coast line pristine.

Hopefully tomorrow conditions will permit us to hit Stephens beach for a cleanup. Stephens is documented as having the highest wave energy of any beach in Australia, so even though we cleaned it up real good last year, we would expect there to be a fair bit of litter churned up from the sand. We'll see…

Peace out Girl Scouts!

By Mike and co.

More photos from Towterer beach cleanup day 4

2 Messages in bottles at Towterer beach

Day 4

We were greeted with a sunny sky this morning at Towterer beach, and headed to the shore with a few butterflies in our tummies – last time this beach was cleaned it took us two days! A small science team was dispatched to survey the dunes and towering middens, and the rest of us got stuck into the rubbish. The first great find was a message in a bottle, launched from Kergualen Plateau in 2014, and the second was.. another message in a bottle! This one from Kettering by a yacht that had just completed the Sydney to Hobart, also in 2014, but had not won so we threw it back (…JOKE not really). The other rubbish collected included a lot of our favourite SMALL PLASTICS, in particular a very large number of nerdles. Once you start finding them, you can't stop, and we all got on our hands and knees! The total for the day was 1500, significantly less than the 28,000 haul from 2 years ago, however given the recent rain we suspect much of the small plastics were buried just under the surface. Our days work ended with a steam up to Mulchay Bay, where we found a good spot for a dive/snorkel and a few waves which, despite a rolley count, made for four boats of happy punters.

Claire

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Photo of Theo with debris and diagram of Green island main beach features and processes

Day 3

Day 3

The day started with some keen workers going for a morning dip in the 16deg waters of Schooner Cove, due to the unfavourable surfing conditions this was the first wash for many!

We then set sail for Green Island Main beach, a veritable treasure trove of small plastics buried amongst the fragrant rotting kelp the area is well known for. It didn't disappoint and the team gathered over 15000 pieces in 3-4hours of intense pit diving.
Matt also used the time to refine his 3D mapping techniques using drones and GPS in a most impressive display of technological wizardy.
Whilst the count was lower than previous years, we were still disappointed to see that such a huge quantity of plastic had accumulated since last year, but most notably in smaller forms.
The afternoons adventures in plastic continued further around the corner at The Duckhole, a quite pleasant stoney beach underlayed with mountains of rope hairs and more small plastics. Lucky us! Masaaki fabricated some spectacular eyewear in form of two holey limpets, which provided some excellent sun protection from the blazing sunshine. Technical difficulty here of 8/10 due to prolific stinging nettles and jackjumper nests, and at least one Tiger snake was spotted. Final tally for this extraction coming soon!

We then headed to South East Bight to try and escape the neverending roll of the exposed West Coast where we have anchored for the night.

The plan for tomorrow in to head to Towterer, but while writing this we have just been informed that The Mulcahy is more likely due to weather conditions. This may well change a few times before we set off tomorrow and we will end up where the wind blows us, as is the norm on the cleanup. Wherever we go there will be rubbish to collect we can be sure of that !

Dayna, Harbs and Joey

Monday, February 20, 2017

Photos from Monday morning

Rex lands the drone back on the boat after getting some great pictures and video of the boats leaving Port Davey on Monday morning.

Theo checking if some Crays are legal to keep. This one was a bi too small so we let it go.

Now we are cleaning up Green island main beach, there is always a lot of rubbish mixed in with rotting kelp, YUK!

Sunday

After an early rise, we made our way from Ketchem Bay, around South West Cape and into the sheltered waters of Spain Bay. Abundant wildlife encountered along the way and even tuna landed…. and lost! The first clean of the trip was Spain Bay beach. We stared at the western end, working our way to the east. It was a good warm up day for the large clean up crew on the beach. Everyone got the chance to get their eye in and zone in on the thousands of tiny pieces of plastic. We steamed around the corner into Schooner Cove and rafted up the boats to get stuck into the count. The rubbish count was higher than expected but the many hands made light work of it. Another very rewarding day for Team Clean!!!!!