Lady Elliot Island is a National Park and Marine National Park ie. A ‘Green Zone NO TAKE’ area and therefore has numerous minimal impact regulations that must be followed.
In addition, the lady Elliot Island Eco Resort commitment (as stated in the Environmental Policy) to preserve the natural environment of the Island and Great Barrier Reef, and Advanced Eco Tourism certification requires that the Interpretation Program and activities are conducted in accordance with best practice and minimal impact guidelines. Each specific Activity Procedure outlines activity/tour specific minimal impact guidelines.
Best Practice/Minimal Impact Guidelines for Interpretation Activities
- No collecting anything alive or dead. Even seemingly dead things can be home to other creatures.
- No littering by dropping bottles, plastic or cigarette butts. These items can harm animals.
- No feeding fish*, birds or other animals. This can make them sick as they do not easily digest human food.
- Maintain small group sizes to improve the quality of the activity as well as provide for greater protection of the environment and wildlife.
- Stick to walking tracks, trails and sandy areas during marine activities to avoid damage to habitats and disturbance to wildlife.
- Avoid sensitive areas during critical times such as breeding or nesting and provide an explanation of this to guests.
- Ensure that no animals or plants are unduly stressed or damaged during activities and back away from animals that are showing signs of distress.
- Ensure minimal noise to not disrupt wildlife and so the guide can be heard.
- Explain how visitors can impact on the area and wildlife and promote the minimal impact actions they can do to reduce this.
- Learn as much as you can about the amazing environment and share this knowledge.
- Promote the positive role of the GBRMPA, the Marine Zoning Areas and Eco Tourism Certification.
- Promote an awareness of the impacts of personal behaviour at home on the environment and how to reduce this.
- Follow the specific minimal impact guidelines for each activity as outlined in each Activity Procedure.
*Except regulated ‘fish feeding’ in the Fish Pond which meets GBRMPA requirements