Boat strike kills dugong in Exmouth Gulf

Pilbara News
A deceased dugong found on town beach, Exmouth.
Camera IconA deceased dugong found on town beach, Exmouth. Credit: Parks and Wildlife.

A dugong has died after being struck by a boat in the Exmouth Gulf.

The dead dugong, which was lactating, was found in the gulf in early June and removed by Parks and Wildlife staff.

A necropsy found it had died from a catastrophic blunt force trauma to the skull, caused by a small watercraft.

Wildlife officer Peter Carstairs said it was important vessels were operated at a responsible speed and manner.

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VideoSea Life Sydney Aquarium Marine Biologist, Andrew Barnes, talks about Pig the Dugong, one of the special residents of the aquarium.

“We have a very high abundance of marine animals that inhabit and frequent the waters of the Ningaloo coast, particularly going into this year’s humpback whale migration,” he said.

“Whether it is fishing, boating or jet skiing we are asking people to slow down and be vigilant around our marine wildlife.”

Mr Carstairs said dugongs were often victims of vessel strikes and were occasionally seriously injured by propellers because they were slow-moving.

Dugongs are common in marine parks from the Gascoyne to the Kimberley.

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