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Blackmans Bay Beach (South)


Quick Summary

Blackmans Bay Beach (south of the stormwater drain and on the sand only) has been proposed by Council as a new off-lead dog exercise area at all times. This proposal is now out for public consultation. If enough people support it this will happen. Otherwise the chance is lost for 5 years.

p.s. Snug Beach (south) is also being canvassed - please show your support for this beach as well.

Ways to Provide Feedback

  • Direct link to survey (conducted by Survey Monkey - asks about other aspects of the draft Dog Management Policy including Snug Beach)

  • Email Kingborough Council directly at, with the subject – Dog Management Policy submission 2023

  • Write a letter addressed to the General Manager and send it to Kingborough Council, 15 Channel Hwy, Kingston 7050.


Reasons for allowing use of Blackmans Bay Beach (south)

  • A very similar proposal allowing use of Taroona Beach (east) has worked extremely well for the last 5 years

  • Kingborough Dog Beach (Tyndall Beach) is very popular and becoming crowded

  • A growing community needs growing space for exercising dogs

  • The section south of the stormwater outlet is 38% of the total length of the beach

  • 40% of households own a dog, so the proportion of beach seems fair and balanced

  • It will bring additional customers to local businesses (a lot of Kingston Beach business is due to dog owners)

  • It will save unnecessary travel for dog owners living closer to Blackmans Bay

  • It provides a flat, easily accessible and enjoyable area for dog owners with mobility issues to exercise their dogs

  • The welfare of dogs and their owners is enhanced by easy access to beaches

  • The beach connects with the Suncoast off-lead walking track

  • This section of beach is not well-used, particularly when it's cold, on weekdays or after heavy rainfall

  • The beach has been subject to "No Swimming" advice due to pollution from the stormwater outlet (see here)

  • It is not recommended to swim near stormwater outlets at any time (see here)

  • The latest water quality is a fail (12 October 2023) (see here)

  • Many locals will walk to the beach, but there is also plenty of public parking

Arguments against (and critique)

  • It's near a children's playground

    • The playground is 230m north of the stormwater drain

  • Families and children swim on this section of beach

    • This section is near a stormwater drain (swimming never recommended here) and has been subject to "No Swimming" advice

    • The latest water quality at Blackmans Bay Beach (south) is a fail (12 October 2023) (see here)

  • It's an environmentally and ecologically sensitive area

    • Where is the evidence?

    • Environmental concerns lack foundation

    • Humans have already built roads, houses and a stormwater outlet

    • The area is subject to pollution

    • Kingborough has a very long coastline and dogs are not able to access almost all of it

  • Barking dogs will create a nuisance

    • Dogs are allowed on-lead along the foreshore path where they can also bark and will be closer to houses

    • The nearby Suncoast track is also off-lead - is there any record of barking complaints here?

    • There are Council processes to deal with barking dogs

  • Dog owners unloading dogs from cars will make noise in the early morning

    • This has not been a problem at Kingston beach where parking is also close to houses

  • Dog owners will take up parking spaces

    • There are plenty of public parking spaces

    • Nearby home owners have their own off-street parking

    • Dog use and human use of beaches tends to occur at different times, reducing competition for car parking

  • Dogs will pollute the beach

    • Owners are very good at picking up after their dogs, and it is easier on sand

    • There is no record of problems at Taroona Beach (east)

    • Humans already pollute the beach

  • Dogs will interfere with people launching boats

    • There is a boat ramp immediately next to Taroona Beach (east) and there is no record of problems

    • There is no boat ramp at Blackmans Bay (south) although some people leave their kayaks etc on the grass verge

Environmental issues

The Tasmanian Government Natural Values Atlas (NVA) provides authoritative and comprehensive information on Tasmania's natural values. According to the NVA, there are no threatened flora on Blackmans Bay Beach.

The NVA lists one verified sighting of a threatened species, the swift parrot, in August 1994. There are no raptor nests or sightings on the southern section of the beach (south of the stormwater drain), and just four sightings of the grey goshawk on the northern section of beach, the latest in March 2019.

The NVA shows there are no recent threatened flora or fauna concerns at Snug Beach (there was one verified sighting of a threatened orchid in 1935).

Water quality testing is regularly conducted at Blackmans Bay Beach (see here). The southern section of the beach has failed a number of times this year, the latest being two fails in October 2023.


The Kingborough Council contributes to the Derwent Estuary Program, which recommends to never swim near stormwater outlets.

Animal welfare issues

The physical and mental welfare of dogs requires them to have regular exercise and enrichment. Without this, problem behaviours such as excessive barking and escaping tend to increase. As the size of blocks and backyards decrease and working hours increase, the daily outing becomes ever more important for the welfare of our dogs. The best outings involve the freedom to sniff and run and explore, and this is where off-lead beaches are so important. Many dogs enjoy getting wet, chasing balls into the water and swimming, while others love the space to run, the range of scents and meeting other dogs without being hampered by tangled leads.

Having local and accessible off-lead exercise areas such as Blackmans Bay beach makes it easier for working families to give their dogs the daily exercise and enrichment that is so important to their physical and mental welfare.

Further Discussion

Kingborough Council says on its Facebook page "Kingborough municipality has one of the longest stretches of picturesque coastline in Tasmania".


Kingborough Council is also one of the fastest growing municipalities in Tasmania. The Council has approved several large subdivisions in recent years (eg., Huntingfield, Spring Farm, Whitewater Park Estate). These new subdivisions make minimal (if any) provision for new off-lead exercise areas.


Given the growing population, and the fact that 40% of households have a dog, surely it is fair and equitable to spread the load across many beaches to allow easy access, reduce traffic and avoid overcrowding at existing facilities.


The section of Blackmans Bay Beach proposed is only 340m long (out of a total of 900m, so 38% of the beach), and it is the most heavily polluted section because of the stormwater drain.

Many people who regularly exercise dogs are doing so early in the day or in the evening (before and after work).  In addition, responsible dog owners know not to walk their dogs in the heat of the day. On the other hand, beach users over summer (peak demand time) will tend to go in the hotter part of the day. These two different usage patterns will act to reduce competition for parking spaces.

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