the keppel islands

extraordinary reefs
Buy the Book

Science, local knowledge, and natural beauty on the southern Great Barrier Reef.

Barren Island, Keppel Bay © Ray Berkelmans.


The Keppel Islands | Extraordinary Reefs


In this book, Dr Alison Jones explains how the reefs of the Keppel Islands in the Southern Great Barrier Reef, Australia, have evolved to adapt to local conditions. Having dived almost every reef in the bay, she is well qualified to describe the best dive sites, the coral species you can expect to find, and any hazards to watch out for. Her personal star-rating of every dive site is a must-have reference for snorkellers and divers alike.

The Keppel Islands | Extraordinary Reefs

Plus $9.30 AUD Standard Australian Postage

A huge thanks to our Amazing Partners!

Livingstone Shire Council places our community – those living and working in our diverse region – at the centre of everything we do. We want to ensure the community’s ideas, feedback and opinions are heard to provide the building blocks for our Shire’s future.

A HUGE thank you to Adam Belot and his team for encouragement and support with this book launch.

JRT Group

With over 250 local employees, the JRT team are very passionate about the community they live and operate in. They support and encourage others to use local businesses at every opportunity and they are one of the largest financial supporters of community groups, sporting teams and community events in the region. 

We are extremely grateful to JRT for supporting our book launch!

Great Keppel Island Hideaway is the premiere accommodation places on Great Keppel Island and offers a range of budget accommodation to suit singles, couples, families, friends and groups. 

Super excited that they’ve partnered with us for this book!

Capricorn Enterprise

Capricorn Enterprise is responsible for strategically marketing the Capricorn region to domestic and international consumers, trade, media and business, and for supporting and developing industry projects, attracting large scale investment and driving the region’s economy forward.

Mary and her amazing team at Capricorn Enterprise have always supported my work and my team and I are over the moon that they’ve assisted us to get the book launched.

Freedom Fast Cats

Gosh what can we say Max Allen Jnr and family! These guys have ferried people to Great Keppel Island and showed them our amazing inshore reefs for decades and we so appreciate that they’ve got on board (sorry for the pun Max!) for this book launch.

Be sure to say hi to Max and his crew when you travel to GKI.

Keppel Turtle Fund

Saving our reef one turtle at a time – KTF looks to engage with our community to grow reef appreciation, education, & rehabilitation on Great Keppel Island & supporting the whole of Keppel Bay. Caring for our turtles and the reef. 

Denise and Mark, a huge thank you for your support and encouragement!

Keppel Konnections

Keppel Konnections is a ferry service providing daily return transfers to Great Keppel Island.

With no roads on the island, Konnections is a passenger ferry offering island transfers for day-trippers as well as guests staying in island accommodation.

For those staying, accommodation houses meet each service and collect your luggage on arrival. 

Islands and rocks


Best dive sites 

The Gordon La Praik Soft Coral Collection

Gordon La Praik is a citizen scientist who devoted decades of his life to studying, identifying and documenting the soft corals and mollusc of the Keppels and Southern Great Barrier Reef. Gordon has allowed us to share his stunning photographs and unique story through...

Keppel Bay’s 7700-year-old reefs

—The Keppel Islands— Keppel Bay’s 7700-year-old reefs  By Dr Alison Jones  |    23 Aug 2020 Unlike other reefs of the Great Barrier Reef, Keppel Bay reefs have been able to alter their pattern of growth and survive changes in sea level and climate about every...

Keppels first bleaching in 14 years

In February 2020, the first bleaching event in 14 years occurred in the Keppel Islands. The corals mainly affected were the fast-growing branching corals that live in the shallow waters fringing the islands. While many see this as a devastating event, a new study...

Keppel Islands magnificent corals recover faster than ever in 2020

What is it about the Keppel Islands? Even after a marine heat wave in February 2020 reaching temperatures of 32 °C and lasting weeks and affecting 90% of the branching corals in the Keppels, they recovered within a matter of months 1. Cumulative heat stress, which...

Patchy coral bleaching observed Monkey Reef

If you’re visiting Monkey Reef off Great Keppel Island this week, you may see patches of bleached or seemingly dead corals. After a run of days with light winds and water temperatures peaking during the mid afternoons above 28 degrees C in the last 3 weeks, the...

Keppel Islands lunar bleaching?

Corals at Monkey Beach reef off Great Keppel Island were exposed to the air during the spring low tides at around 3am and 3pm on the 28th and 29th of September 2019. These extreme 'spring' low and high tides occur monthly at the time of the New Moon but only the...

The opportunists of the sea

Coral will grow just about anywhere! This diver's mask lay submerged for months and has become home to sponges, soft corals, turf algae, macro algae and what looks like a cyanobacteria. It shows how opportunistic marine animals and plants can be.  

Tuskfish uses rock to crack open cockle shell

Scott Gardner was returning from an 18-metre dive in the Keppels on 12 November 2006 when he heard a cracking noise.

Ferocious Pufferfish filmed at Pelican Island

Aptly named for its random attacks on humans, this giant Ferocious Puffer fish didn’t seem so fierce at the time. It was not camera-shy and seemed to enjoy our pats and attention.

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