“I’m delighted to put forward the Barrier Reef Anemonefish as Queensland’s Aquatic Emblem and even more so knowing that 19,202 people responded to our request for submissions on the emblem.
“The anemonefish - which claimed 27% of the submissions (5162) ahead of the Blue Sea Star with 16% - encapsulates the vibrancy of our outdoor lifestyle and the colourful spirit of Queensland
“When beginning this process Cabinet agreed that an Aquatic Emblem should reflect the spirit of Queensland’s values and be an appropriate addition to our suite of existing State Emblems.
“These include the koala, the Cooktown orchid, the brolga and sapphire.
“As well as reflecting the spirit of Queensland’s values our new Aquatic Emblem will also promote the importance of our coastal ecosystem.
“The biodiversity of the Reef is helping to advance our biotechnology industry and the Queensland Government’s Smart State agenda.
“The idea to identify an Aquatic Emblem originated from the Australian Underwater Federation, the peak group representing divers. Dr Adam Smith from the AUF initiated the idea for an aquatic emblem for Queensland to encourage greater understanding of our diverse aquatic biota. Dr Smith was also involved in the selection of the blue groper as the NSW aquatic emblem"
”The final decision of the Barrier Reef anemonefish is very appropriate as it is well known to fishers, divers, indigenous, tourism, conservationists and the general public through the success of the Nemo character in the Disney film”-said Dr Smith.
Mr Beattie said a panel of experts, chaired by the Queensland Museum,recommended a shortlist of aquatic species, including the barramundi cod, Hump-headed wrasse, eagle ray, leopard shark, coral and other well known aquatic species.
“The 19,202 submissions says that this has been a most successful process and we have an ideal outcome,” he said.
Media contact: Premier’s Office 3224 4500, Dr Adam Smith- Australian
Underwater Federation 0418 726 584