Recreational Fishermen please spare the lawn mowers of the reef! | Oceanwatch Australia

There’s nothing better than getting together with your mates or rocking a solo fishing expedition however, this week the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority is asking recreational fishermen to spare the friendly herbivores of the seas.

What do you mean by herbivores of the sea is that a real thing? Yes! The following species Parrot Fish, Steep Head Parrotfish, Unicorn Fish and Rabbit Fish. all play a vital role in keeping the reef spick and span by eating the algae growing on coral.

“When you have a reef that’s in trouble, if it’s sick and bleached like ours, or crown-of-thorns (starfish) have been through it, these guys can help restore it.

“If the algae overtakes it, the reef basically can’t survive, and globally that’s what’s happened to a lot of coral reefs when the herbivores are removed from the system.”

While herbivores are legally allowed to be fished, Randall Owens from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority said they were not usually targeted because as herbivores they are difficult to catch on a line with bait.

As the reef is currently under immense stress we can all do a little bit to minimise the stress on this fantastic wonder of the world.

Any questions?

Contact the GBR Marine Park Authority for more information.

Read more about our tips on responsible recreational fishing.

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