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Iconic cuttlefish breeding site added to Australian heritage list

Canberra, Feb 26 (IANS) A cuttlefish breeding zone off the coast of South Australia (SA) has been added to Australia’s National Heritage List.

Each winter, thousands of giant cuttlefish migrate to the rocky shore near the town of Whyalla on the Eyre Peninsula to breed, creating a spectacular underwater light show, Xinhua reported.

Tanya Plibersek, Minister for the Environment and Water, announced on Saturday that the Cuttlefish Coast Sanctuary Zone will join iconic sites such as Bondi Beach and Uluru on the heritage list, granting it additional protection.

“The cuttlefish put on a spectacular show of colour, shape-shifting and cunning games, creating what is almost an underwater light show,” she said in a media release.

“The Cuttlefish Coast Sanctuary Zone adds outstanding heritage value to Australia’s precious coastal sanctuary zones and helps to develop an understanding of our unique natural history.”

The Australian giant cuttlefish is the world’s largest known cuttlefish species, growing up to one meter long and over 10 kg in weight.

Rocky reefs near Whyalla in the Spencer Gulf are the only known mass breeding ground for the species.

In May 2022, the SA government re-imposed a ban on fishing for giant cuttlefish in the gulf to protect the species.

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