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Water quality in the Great Barrier Reef region: Responses of mangrove, seagrass and macroalgal communities

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Schaffelke, B., Mellors, J. and Duke, N. C. (2005) Water quality in the Great Barrier Reef region: Responses of mangrove, seagrass and macroalgal communities. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 51 (1-4). pp. 279-296. ISSN 0025-326X

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Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2004.10.025


Marine plants colonise several interconnected ecosystems in the Great Barrier Reef region including tidal wetlands, seagrass meadows and coral reefs. Water quality in some coastal areas is declining from human activities. Losses of mangrove and other tidal wetland communities are mostly the result of reclamation for coastal development of estuaries, e.g. for residential use, port infrastructure or marina development, and result in river bank destabilisation, deterioration of water clarity and loss of key coastal marine habitat. Coastal seagrass meadows are characterized by small ephemeral species. They are disturbed by increased turbidity after extreme flood events, but generally recover. There is no evidence of an overall seagrass decline or expansion. High nutrient and substrate availability and low grazing pressure on nearshore reefs have lead to changed benthic communities with high macroalgal abundance. Conservation and management of GBR macrophytes and their ecosystems is hampered by scarce ecological knowledge across macrophyte community types.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Pollution, Mangroves, Seagrass, Macroalgae, Nutrients, Herbicides
Subjects:Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > By region or country > Australia > Great Barrier Reef
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Algae and algae culture
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Seagrasses
Live Archive:06 Feb 2024 23:16
Last Modified:06 Feb 2024 23:16

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