Macquarie Harbour Fish Farm Trash ~ TIMELINE VIDEOS

Fine detail – Best viewed in 720P – Click on gear to set –
Video link Fish Farm Trash 5 locations Macquarie Harbour December 2019

This film clip zeroed in on Tasmania Parks and Wildlife who we believe is responsible for maintaining World Heritage Values, and so we sent a copy to their headman, Mr Jason Jacobi. His reply shocked us.

Basically, he informed us that it’s not their problem. And when we asked whether PWS was responsible for maintaining World heritage Values, well, we did not receive a reply. After waiting two weeks, we sent the clip to the Fish Farm Trash Hotline run by the Dept of Primary Industries or DPIPWE.

Here is the rather lengthy reply from the Dept of Primary Industries:

Thursday 30 January 2020.
Thank you for your email and for making us aware of the debris discovered in Macquarie Harbour. Marine debris management is something we take very seriously and I hope that the below information helps clarify some things for you.

Regulation of marine farming operations including marine farming debris is managed by authorised Fisheries Officers within the Marine Farming Branch (DPIPWE) and authorised officers of Marine and Safety Tasmania (MAST) in accordance with the provisions of the Marine Farming Planning Act 1995.

Compliance staff conduct inspections of marine farming leases around Tasmania. These inspections include the auditing of marine farming equipment against marine farming gear registers supplied to DPIPWE by finfish companies.  In addition, random surveys of shorelines for marine farming debris are conducted in finfish growing regions. 

Where marine farming equipment is located outside marine farming leases and is identifiable back to a finfish company appropriate compliance action is taken.  This includes the issuing of infringement notices with associated fines. For members of the public who come across marine debris, there are several ways that this can be reported to us. We have a web page detailing these processes on our website (

I understand that last year you discussed marine debris management with compliance staff in the Marine Farming Branch and that you were provided the above link, together with a copy of the equipment register for farms in the Harbour. Since that time a salmon data portal has been established by Government and this provides additional data on clean-up activities – select ‘Operational Compliance’ and scroll down to ‘Marine Debris Clean ups’ and ‘view historical data’

Industry engage on a regular basis with the local community on its operations in the harbour including its marine debris clean-up activities.  In regard to its routine clean-up activities in the harbour, it is worth noting that they work closely with Parks in Macquarie Harbour when conducting shoreline clean-ups to ensure the correct permits are held for work within the WHA, that bird interactions are managed appropriately, rubbish is disposed of correctly and results are reported to Parks.

Once again thank you for bringing your observations to our attention – officers from the Marine Farming Branch will be conducting routine compliance activities in Macquarie Harbour in Q1 2020 and this will include random shoreline surveys. I am advised that industry is also currently conducting survey work in the WHA and that this will include surveying the areas you have identified.

Graham Woods, Manager
Marine Farming Branch
Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment

Thinking their reply avoided the issue Jack and Jude replied on Monday February 3, 2020:
Graham, we are just simple sailors, who have crossed every ocean and explored hundreds, if not thousands of isolated islands and lands, so you’ll have to pardon our blunt reply.

Mate, these last four years we’ve been filming plastic fish farm ropes disintegrating on World Heritage shores and you give us some long winded reply that doesn’t even deal with the problem. Let’s get real. All you wrote applies to big items, buoys, pipes cages. They are not the problem. You do not address the real problem of ropes that break into filaments then breakdown to fibres that re-enter the waterways. So here’s our promise to you. It’s the same we made to Mr Mark Asman of Tassal. If we film clean beaches, we’ll show the world and congratulate your efforts – But if we film more plastic breaking down, we’ll film it and now we’ll blame your department because your silly policy didn’t stop the pollution.
Jack and Jude

links to videos sent to and Media Huon Aquaculture – – –

YouTube video link Brisbane May 6, 2019

YouTube video Fish Farm Trash Macquarie Harbour March 28, 2019

We sent these videos to Mr Mark Asman, Head of Aquaculture Tassal, wrote to us on 23 June 2019:

Just to get back to you here. I went to Brisbane Bay last week as mentioned and, as you say, once my eyes adjusted, I was able to pick out various pieces of debris.  As you mentioned, I did not just stick to the shoreline but walked in as well.  I am told that the amount of debris is declining (with each successive effort), but it needs continuous effort to get where we want.

So the plan will be to 1. Keep on the culture side by “stopping it at the source” (we think this is having a real impact, just takes time), 2. Continue the regular shore line clean ups by the staff and others and 3. Working on a solution like you mention, a permanent crew to walk the shore lines

Head of Aquaculture

links to videos sent to and Media Huon Aquaculture – –

YouTube Video Fish Farm Trash – Revisited December 16, 2018


YouTube Video Fish Farm Gunge February 15, 2018

YouTube Video More Fish Farm Trash January 20, 2018

links to videos sent to PWS Ranger in Charge, Strahan Tasmania

YouTube Video Macquarie Harbour Clean up May 2, 2017