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What do you know about Dugongs?

Well, ask a member of the Pumicestone Passage Probus and they’ll be able to tell you!

“We’re so lucky to have these amazing mammals in the Passage at Bribie,” says Di Carter, Probus speakers organiser.”You may have seen one; perhaps you were on a BBQ boat or perhaps you were just chilling out in the water. They do sometimes come close in to the edge for food, which is where I saw one recently.”

Pumicestone Passage Probus is a great club where members come along each month to enjoy some fun and friendship. At each meeting they have an interesting speaker and September was no exception, when Dr Janet Lanyon from the Marine Vertebrate Ecology Research Group, School of Biological Science, Queensland University, was their guest. For the past 25 years a research program has been running examining the ecology and health of dugongs, and Dr Lanyon shared some of the latest findings with the meeting.

Members learned that dugongs are one of the most commonly-encountered marine mammals in northern Queensland waters, including Moreton Bay. Close to a thousand dugongs live in association with the bay’s shallow seagrass meadows.

“I didn’t know there were that many”, says Di, “Nor did I know they are related to elephants, but having seen elephants in the Chobe riverin Africa washing the long grass in the river to clean it and then eat it I can see the similarity!”

Dugongs are just one of the many interesting topics presented by guest speakers to members at Pumicestone Probus meetings. If you’re interested in joining, or just to find out more, go along to one of their meetings, held at Bribie RSL Club at 9 am for 9.30 start on the first Tuesday of each month.


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