Toronto, Ontario–(Newsfile Corp. – June 7, 2021) – Though on first glance winemakers and marine scientists may seem like an odd match, on World Ocean Day on June 8, 2021, family owned Australian winery, Wakefield Wines is coming together with the Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS) to save the White’s seahorse, and their habitats, from extinction.
The SeaBnB campaign is a fundraising initiative calling on supporters from around the world to give these underwater equines a temporary home in a ‘seahorse hotel’ while SIMS researchers work to rebuild their permanent, seagrass habitats. 100% of donations (less any transaction fees) go directly towards SIMS research projects with the aim to fully restore the seahorse’s natural habitats and give these animals a fighting chance to avoid extinction. The aim is to raise $150,000, with $10,000 donated by the family winery to kickstart the campaign.
“I’ve always been fascinated by the great work that SIMS does and I’m blown away by the innovative research they are doing to restore the homes of these precious marine animals,” Wakefield Wines third-generation Winemaker and Managing Director Mitchell Taylor said.
“Seahorses, much like grapevines, are an indicator species that raise the alarm to serious climate-related issues. It’s very important we do what we can to reverse their population decline before it’s too late.”
The White’s seahorse is endemic to the east coast of Australia and is one of only two seahorses on the planet to be listed as an Endangered species. Their preferred homes, the underwater seagrass meadows known as Posidonia australis, are declining at a rapid rate, the same rate as our beloved coral reefs.
According to SIMS, the survival of this seagrass species is crucial in the fight against climate change. It has the ability to slow climate change by storing carbon 30 to 40 times faster than terrestrial forests. And while being home to beautiful sea critters like the White’s seahorse, the seagrass helps filter the debris in our oceans, making them the picturesque clear blue waters seen in tourism ads around the world.
“This is such an exciting initiative – it’s a partnership which unites two quite distinct organisations who share common values focused on safeguarding the future of the planet.” SIMS CEO Martina Doblin said.
“Many people don’t realise that changes in the earth’s climate system impact both terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Every second breath we take is from our oceans. The SeaBnB initiative is an important project that brings together two areas of research – restoring seagrass meadows in Sydney Harbour, and artificial seahorse habitats for the endangered White’s seahorse.
“We hope this campaign will inspire everyone to support our work and learn more about the importance of these restoration efforts.”
Donations of any denomination can be made at SeaBnb.com.au or selected from the list of luxury SeaBnB seahorse accommodation packages.
To launch the campaign, Wakefield Wines have called upon Australian record freediver Adam Stern to act as an underwater hotel concierge for incoming seahorse guests in a short film about the initiative.
“It’s hard not to notice the deterioration of marine habitats all over the world. Without projects like this, we’re going to continue to see the degradation of these underwater environments.”
Funds raised for this campaign directly supports three phases of SIMS research and restoration projects. To kick start the campaign and Phase 1A of the project, Wakefield have chipped in $10,000:
- Phase 1A is to develop a greater scientific understanding of the success of extending the seahorses’ natural seagrass habitat with the temporary SeaBnB structures
- Phase 1B will trial the restoration of Posidonia meadows in areas of Sydney Harbour where they have drastically declined
- Phase 2 of the project will be the rehabilitation of Posidonia seagrass in one major site in Sydney Harbour
- Phase 3 will be the rehabilitation of the Sydney seahorse populations in Sydney Harbour. This will be based on the successful rearing of seahorse babies with a partner organisation, followed by the reintroduction of seahorses to the established Posidonia site
Donations to the SeaBnB initiative, as well as additional information about the project, is available at www.seabnb.com.au
Wakefield Wines brings attention to World Ocean Day, June 8th 2021 as a reminder to all about the importance of caring for the planets oceans and encourage others to take action in the clean up and preservation of our marine ecosystems.
For further information, imagery or interview requests please contact Wakefield Wines Global Assistant Brand Manager:
Joanna Blaszczyk | e: [email protected] | m: +61 423 073 356
World Oceans Day is an international day that takes place annually on 8 June. The concept was originally proposed in 1992 by Canada’s International Centre for Ocean Development (ICOD) and the Ocean Institute of Canada (OIC) at the Earth Summit – UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. “World Oceans Day” was officially recognised by the United Nations in 2008. The international day supports the implementation of worldwide Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and fosters public interest in the protection of the ocean and the sustainable management of its resources. The purpose of the Day is to inform the public of the impact of human actions on the ocean, develop a worldwide movement of citizens for the ocean, and mobilize and unite the world’s population on a project for the sustainable management of the world’s oceans.
Source: Wakefield Wines
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