In an effort to raise the profile about the importance of the Giant Australian Cuttlefish, a large scale Disco Cuttlefish will be the focus of the Adelaide Fringe Festival, taking the place of the festival's mascot.
Adelaide-based documentary filmmakers Dan and Emma Monceaux believe that Disco Cuttlefish, this year's Adelaide Fringe Festival mascot, should be delivering a critical environmental message.
'Stobie' the Disco Cuttlefish is a 13 metre long illuminated audio-visual parade float produced by Adelaide Fringe Festival and inspired by the Giant Australian Cuttlefish.
The Monceauxs have been closely following the decline of the population, which has reduced from over 170,000 in the late 1990's to about 13,500 in 2013. The causes of the decline remain unclear, but the animals are reducing in size as well as in number, suggesting a potential early life stage developmental issue.
After receiving information from the Monceauxs on the population's status and various threats, the Adelaide Fringe Parade's associate producer Tessa Leon stated that providing an environmental message was not the focus.
While 'Stobie' waves its tentacles and flashes coloured patterns down Adelaide streets, dancers will perform to disco hits of the 1970s, including an ironic choice: 'Stayin' Alive' by the BeeGees.
"The Fringe has taken the Giant Australian Cuttlefish as their mascot, but rejected any responsibility for drawing attention to their plight," Dan Monceaux said.
"The Northern Spencer Gulf population is at its lowest ever recorded.
"I'm concerned that the Disco Cuttlefish will trivialise what is potentially our state's greatest environmental shame."
With known industrial water quality influences in the region emanating from the Whyalla steelworks, Port Bonython gas fractionation plant, former aquaculture operations and export shipping activities Mr Monceaux believes 'stayin' alive' will prove to be a struggle for the Giant Australian Cuttlefish.