After the floods in late 2010 and Cyclone Yasi in January 2011 an 800% increase in Turtle strandings occured around our far northern coastlines. Our existing Turtle Rehabilitation Centre was not big enough to hold that many Turtles.
The deal was made to build a new world-class facility with more room, cleaner water, bigger tanks and an Education Centre on Fitzroy Island - Australia.
The permits from Marine Parks and EPA went through in late 2011. Since then we have been building the new centre step by step with the help of donations.
First we had to clean up the area. The most difficult task was to locate the old existing inlet and outlet pipes from the prawn farm that operated on the island 15 years ago. It took us over 2 months of digging just to find one end of the pipes! A survey had to be done and in mid February 2012 we finally found the pipes allowing us to get water running a short time later ready for our Turtles new tanks.
At the same time we had to do a lot of fundraising to get the support we needed.
We raised over $5000 at the Cairns Underwater Film Festival 2011
Ergon Energy: $7000 Grant
Quicksilver Cruises donated $800
Warren Entsch donated his Bobcat for two weeks
Qantas gave us $10,000
WWF gave us $20,000 - which allowed us to start building and buying supplies
JCU donated a substantial amount to help us building the interpretive Centre.
T-shirt Fundraiser at Cairns Underwater Filmfestival 2012: $ 4350
T-shirt Fundraiser throughout 2012 : approx. $ 5000
Saraya's School Fundraiser $ 2000
Underwater Film Fundraiser 2013: $7500
Late 2012 we finally completed the new Rehab centre and started relocating most of our Turtles from the Cairns Facility to the Island. We officially opened the centre early 2013 with WWF, Qantas and Bob Irwin.
Educational Tours are held every day at 2pm, need to be booked at the Hotel reception.