Save the Pier
The Weedy Sea Dragon (Phyllopteryx taeniolatus) is the official marine emblem of the Australian State of Victoria and that in itself should be reason to minimise any potential disruption to its natural habitat.
Parks Victoria knew for years that the historic Flinders Pier on the Mornington Peninsula needed urgent repairs but failed to act and instead left the structure to deteriorate until last year, when it quietly announced its demolition. Flinders Pier is one of the State’s oldest functioning piers, one of the last remaining all-timber piers on Western Port, and one of the longest timber piers remaining in Victoria. It now appears that we are in a fight to save the 157-year-old Flinders Pier, which provides a home to the endangered Weedy Sea Dragon.
Sign the petition at this link:
“Habitat degradation and loss due to human activity and pollution is without a doubt the largest threat to Sea Dragons. The loss of suitable seagrass beds and canopy seaweed from inshore rock reefs, coupled with natural history traits that make them poor dispersers, put the future of the Sea Dragon population at high risk. I believe that any disruption to their current natural habitat will have a negative and adverse effect on the species – similar to what we’ve seen at the Portsea Pier. The Weedy Sea Dragon population appears to have reduced as a result of dredging Port Phillip Bay for a shipping container channel. Beneath the surface of the temperate waters in Southern Australia live a truly unique species found nowhere else in the world. Between 2014 and 2016, I spent countless hours under Flinders Pier capturing images of these mysterious creatures as part of the “Dracones et Equorum Dragons & Horses” series. In 2019, I began to film the Sea Dragons as part of another personal project, “Drifting Weeds“.
Being one of the most accessible piers to find and photograph this unique species, I believe it’s imperative that we protect and conserve every aspect of what has become the Weedy’s natural habitat ~ The Flinders Pier. LL
“I am so sorry to hear of the threat to the habitat of the Weedy Sea Dragon on the Mornington Peninsula. I do indeed think that it is a most wonderful creature and if I find an opportunity to draw attention publicly to the changes that now threaten its survival, I will take them. Yours sincerely, David Attenborough.”