Dolphin rescue groups and not-for-profits have taken part in a meeting with Dawesville MP Lisa Munday and Mayor Rhys Williams about the protection of dolphins in the Peel-Harvey estuary.
Ms Munday hosted the meeting on February 11, sparked by the importance of quick action after the recent death of dolphins in the Estuary.
In October of 2021, beloved dolphin calf Meelan, well-known among the Peel community, died after being tangled up in fishing line - leading to an outcry from the community.
The meeting allowed for local volunteers to discuss the protection of dolphins from a holistic viewpoint, proposing grassroots action plans moving forward.
In attendance were members from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA), City of Mandurah, Peel Harvey Catchment Council, Salt and Bush Eco Tours and Coastal Waste Warriors.
Staff from Environmental Minister Reece Whitby's office and Mayor Rhys Williams were also in attendance to support the discussion.
Mayor Williams said dolphins held a "special place" in the hearts of locals, and their protection was critical for the City.
"Not only are our dolphins valued by the Mandurah community on an emotional level, they are also vitally important to our local economy, particularly our tourism industry," Mayor Williams said.
"Only by working together will we ensure our local dolphins thrive here in Mandurah for many generations to come."
Ms Munday echoed the Mayor's sentiments, adding that Dawesville residents had shown a great passion for protecting the local eco-system.
"The environment, the protection of our beautiful estuary, and the welfare of our wildlife is a top priority for me," Ms Munday said.
"Hearing from experienced and local volunteers was an integral part of the discussion that highlighted the importance of dolphins in the region."
Sally Kirby from the Volunteer Rescue Group, who has 25 years of experience, addressed the group to highlight the importance and heavy reliance that is placed on experienced local volunteers when handling and dealing with dolphins.
Ms Kirby urged the room to look at the issues of strandings, entrapments, entanglements, and other natural events.
The discussion turned to a brainstorm of ideas looking at various preventative measures, responses and management approaches.
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