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Artificial Reef Program update Artificial reefs made out of concrete ‘Reef Balls’ are a new approach being undertaken by NSW DPI to improve the environment for fish in barren areas of three Recreational Fishing Havens; Lake Macquarie, Botany Bay and St Georges Basin. It is hoped that the new reefs, funded by the Recreational Fishing Trust, will provide improved recreational fishing opportunities, while scientific assessment of the structures will assess their use as a fisheries enhancement tool. Reef Balls are purpose built artificial structures developed in the United States that have been used worldwide for a variety of applications including reef establishment and/or restoration. The Reef Ball reefs mimic natural reef, providing structure and shelter for juvenile fish settlement. Evidence to date suggests that Reef Balls can reach 80% or more of the natural species diversity and population densities of nearby natural reef systems within just a few years. 180 Reef Balls, forming 6 reefs, have already been successfully deployed in Lake Macquarie. Installation of Reef Balls into Botany Bay and St Georges Basin are planned for later this year.

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Lake Macquarie Reef Ball Reefs - NSW DPI_2008

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