Save Martha Cove - Ban fishing in Martha Cove Marina

Save Martha Cove - Ban fishing in Martha Cove Marina

14 September 2022
Signatures: 1,027Next goal: 1,500
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Why this petition matters

Started by Georgia Symmons

Martha Cove on the Mornington Peninsula has become a sanctuary for fish and marine life. With growing numbers of fish, it has become a favourite, bountiful (and easy) spot to fish.

Since the end of lockdown, the number of people fishing has swelled. On any given day of the week, day and night, people are fishing on the breakwater, groyne and boardwalk of the marina. On many days, up to 100 people are fishing at any one time, with fish being caught every 30 seconds.

This may not seem like a problem but, Martha Cove was designed and developed as a waterfront residential marina that once fully developed will comprise of 1,150 houses and apartments and 650 marina berths. 

It’s a designated boating channel that has been designed for two boats to pass safely. The boating channel is narrow allows the safe passage of hundreds of boats, jet skis and other water vessels that use it.

The marina is also designated as a safe harbour and is home to search and rescue teams. It is also the base of many commercial business including fishing charters and a boat yard.

Martha Cove is a place for everyone to enjoy - to walk the boardwalks, launch boats and experience a coastal location with BBQs, a restaurant and retail area.

The marina, waterways and its boardwalks were never designed for fishing. There is no pier or place to fish without impact. A pier with associated parking, toilets and showers is less than a kilometre away, not to mention a long coastline to fish.

Because of fishing at Martha Cove:

  • Safety of the boating channel is being compromised as fishing lines reduce the area to ensure safe passage of boats entering and leaving the marina. Fishing lines, if caught in the propeller, can result in loss of control of the boat and may result in injury and damage.
  • Dogs have eaten hooks that have resulted in injuries and operations. For example, a dog has lost its eye as a result of a fishing hook. Another had to have stomach surgery.
  • There have been near misses of fishing hooks hitting faces while someone casts their line on the boardwalk.
  • Fishing rods are placed on the narrow boardwalk, making it impossible for people to walk and ride
  • People are bringing chairs on to the boardwalk and setting up their fishing spot, again making it difficult to pass
  • Rubbish is being left 
  • People are smoking and drinking and leaving their rubbish
  • People are urinating and defecating in shrubbery in the surrounding area because there are no toilets near by
  • Carparking is inadequate and impacts those visiting the area for recreation or to walk their dog on the leash free dog beach
  • Dogs are running off the beach to feed on bait left by the fishers
  • Items are being stored in vegetation 
  • Undersize fish are being thrown into the stairwell
  • Fish are being cleaned onsite, with guts being left on the boardwalk, landing, and vegetation
  • The resident pelican has been injured, with a fishing line caught around its neck

There are three main bodies responsible for the area - Martha Cove Owners Corporation, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council and the Victorian Government – this makes change complex with all passing the buck.

With your support, we are seeking to show these three responsible bodies (and their representatives) that this is:

  • A growing problem
  • Has community support
  • Banning fishing from Martha Cove is essential

We are seeking to make fishing in the Marina Reserve, mouth of the Marina and waterways of Martha Cove including the boardwalks illegal and a criminal offence that can be enforced by the Victorian Police.

Please sign this petition to show your support. 

As the responsibility of Martha Cove marina is complex and overlaps jurisdictions, we will present this petition to:

Local members and candidates

Local Council


Government Departments

Owners Corporation

  • Martha Cove Owners Corporation 

Media outlets

  • Local newspapers
  • Radio
  • Community pages

Please sign and share this petition to help us so everyone can be welcomed to the safe and stunning coastal precinct of the Martha Cove marina, that is an important sanctuary for our local fish and marine life.

Thank you.

Save Martha Cove


Support now
Signatures: 1,027Next goal: 1,500
Support now