Baykeeper Catchment Education

From December 2014 to January 2017, the Baykeeper Catchment Education Project successfully germinated Melbourne’s first baywide network to deploy a coordinated suite of litter and biodiversity monitoring methods; consider how their patch was part of a bigger picture; connect Melburnians to their beaches year-round; and develop other practical projects to study and protect our catchment holistically.

The project enabled the EcoCentre to conduct education, network-building and Citizen Science research activities that foster awareness of the Port Phillip Bay ecosystem, and of the influence of human activities in its water catchments.

Citizen Science

Through this project audit methods were trialled and refined for cohesive catchment-wide data gathering between beaches, streets, and inland waterways. We paid particular attention to recording microplastics that might be overlooked by most clean-ups. Surveys included Street to Sea Litter Audits, Mollusc Surveys, and Beach Profiling to track coastal erosion.

Thank you to Worcester Polytechnic Institute for their robust method assessment.

If your group would like to contribute data to these research areas contact

Check out our short clips showing What is Citizen Science? and Street to Sea Litter Audit: Beach Method.


This project established several ongoing partnerships with Baykeeper Ambassadors to support catchment-to-coast activities. We are proud to work with Bellarine Catchment Network, Polperro Dolphin Swims, Yarra Riverkeeper, Werribee Riverkeeper.

Special thanks to Friends of Williamstown Wetlands (NE regional Ambassador during project), and our Data Champions: Dolphin Research Institute and Australian Marine Mammal Conservation Foundation.


Thank you to our many collaborators

State Government: Coastcare Victoria, Dept Environment Land Water & Planning, EPA Victoria, Sustainability Victoria, Victorian Litter Action Alliance, Melbourne Water, Metropolitan Waste Management & Resource Recovery Group, Parks Victoria

Local Government: Mornington Shire Council, City of Frankston, City of Geelong, City of Kingston, Hobsons Bay Council, St Kilda Youth Services, City of Port Phillip, Wyndham Council, Whittlesea Council, City of Bayside - Bayside Environmental Friends Network

Community Groups: Australian Coastal Society, Beach Patrol Australia, Curlewis Coastcare Group, Earthcare St Kilda, Balcombe Creek Estuary Reserve Group, Bellarine Catchment Network, Clean Up Australia, Group, Disabled Divers Association, Friends of Williamstown Wetlands, Jawbone Sanctuary Marine Care, Keep Australia Beautiful, Keep Victoria Beautiful, Ricketts Point Marine Care Group, Rye Foreshore Advisory Group, Yarra Riverkeeper, Werribee Riverkeeper, Upper Yarra Landcare, Scab Duty, Take 3 For the Sea, Trash Trade, Harry Breidahl - Ocean Literacy, Native Fish Victoria

Not for profits: Boon Wurrung Foundation, Australian Marine Conservation Society, Australian Marine Mammal Conservation Foundation, Melbourne Polytechnic TAFE, Geography Teachers' Association of Victoria, Nature Conservancy, Dolphin Research Institute, Two Bays (Saltwater Projects), Sea Life Trust (Melbourne Aquarium), Shin Hao Riverkeeper (China), South Korean marine litter Researchers, Take 3 for the Sea, Marine Education Science & Community, Ricketts Point Marine Care Group, Sea Shepherd Australia, Tangaroa Blue, Victorian National Parks Association, Waterkeepers Bahamas, Worcester Polytechnic Institute


Baykeeper Catchment Education was funded through an Innovation Grant Lord Mayor's Charitable Foundation.