Exploring alien sea life beneath the Estuary

 Media release – Issued Saturday 20 August 2020

Strong currents, murky visibility, wild colourful alien-like creatures all around — it sounds like a scene from a sci-fi thriller, right? Try the underwater world of the kanamaluka/Tamar Estuary.

The tales of QVMAG's Natural Sciences curator David Maynard will leave you hungry for more. With his firsthand experience bumping in to sea creatures below the tide — both small and large — he has extensive insight into what lives within this ancient water way nestled in the heart of Launceston.

From fish and sharks, to soft corals and the threatened giant kelp — the Estuary is a refuge for many underwater creatures right in the heart of Launceston.

The Estuary: Below the Surface at QVMAG Inveresk is a collection of stunning underwater photography allowing you to marvel at the strange and wonderful species below that call the Estuary home.

QVMAG's Natural Science Curator David Maynard has taken the lead of both curator and photographer for the exhibition, featuring photography from his diving expeditions within the Estuary.

"Too often the community think that our estuary is a dead, polluted waterway, however that is because they cannot see below the waterline. This exhibition brings the Tamar's marine biodiversity to Launceston for everyone to enjoy. I hope that this exhibition will help the community to understand and care for this unique waterway."

Tracy Puklowski, General Manager Creative Arts & Cultural Services, said the Estuary has many magical forms of sea life waiting to be explored as part of the new exhibition.

"The kanamaluka/Tamar Estuary is large part of the backdrop for our City. It holds both a wide range of culturally significant ties to Tasmania's history, along with offering a rich environment for the study of underwater species, biodiversity in Tasmania, the impacts of climate change, and much more.

"Our latest exhibition at the Museum at Inveresk is a breathtaking underwater exploration of the Estuary and is intended to take our community on an educational journey about the species that call the Estuary home.

"The dark and ominous exhibition space really adds a focus on the photography featured as you wander through the Museum, allowing you to get lost in the amazing underwater world that drifts through Launceston."

The Estuary: Below the Surface offers an opportunity for public education and celebration of the Estuary, linking back to the City of Launceston River Health Action Plan, as part of the Launceston City Deal.