Whale safety warning for locals

PEOPLE out on the water have been reminded to keep their distance from migrating whales after a kayak paddler off Fraser Island was photographed inside the 100m protection zone this week.

Climate Change and Sustainability Minister Kate Jones said any person in control of a boat must not bring it any closer than 100 metres of a whale with a maximum penalty of $12,000 applying for intentionally moving closer to a whale than permitted.

On-the-spot fines ranging from $300 to $500 also applied for various contraventions of the conservation plan.

“Please play it safe around these huge mammals,” Ms Jones said.

“Give them some room and give them respect – they've been visiting our waters for thousands of years.

“The ocean is there for all of us to share and it is big enough for whales – and whale watchers – to have all the room they need.

“The safest place for inexperienced people to observe migrating whales is from commercial whale-watching vessels or from dry land.”

For further information on whale regulations, log on to www.derm.qld.govau/wildlife-ecosystems/wildlife/watching_wildlife.



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