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Seabed Biodiversity on the Continental Shelf of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Pitcher, R., Doherty, P., Arnold, P., Hooper, J., Gribble, N., Chalmers, S., Coles, R. , Ehrke, B. , Good, N. and Kistle, S. (2007) Seabed Biodiversity on the Continental Shelf of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Project Report. CRC-REEF Task Number: C1.1.2. FRDC Project Number: 2003/021. NOO Contract Number: 2004/015. Department of Primary Industries, Queensland.

PDF (Seabed Biodiversity Mapping final report)

Publisher URL: http://www.frdc.com.au/Archived-Reports/FRDC%20Projects/2003-021-DLD.pdf


The Great Barrier Reef is a unique World Heritage Area of national and international significance. As a multiple use Marine Park, activities such as fishing and tourism occur along with conservation goals. Managers need information on habitats and biodiversity distribution and risks to ensure these activities are conducted sustainably. However, while the coral reefs have been relatively well studied, less was known about the deeper seabed in the region. From 2003 to 2006, the GBR Seabed Biodiversity Project has mapped habitats and their associated biodiversity across the length and breadth of the Marine Park to provide information that will help managers with conservation planning and to assess whether fisheries are ecologically sustainable, as required by environmental protection legislation (e.g. EPBC Act 1999).

Holistic information on the biodiversity of the seabed was acquired by visiting almost 1,500 sites, representing a full range of known environments, during 10 month-long voyages on two vessels and deploying several types of devices such as: towed video and digital cameras, baited remote underwater video stations (BRUVS), a digital echo-sounder, an epibenthic sled and a research trawl to collect samples for more detailed data about plants, invertebrates and fishes on the seabed. Data were collected and processed from >600 km of towed video and almost 100,000 photos, 1150 BRUVS videos, ~140 GB of digital echograms, and from sorting and identification of ~14,000 benthic samples, ~4,000 seabed fish samples, and ~1,200 sediment samples.

Item Type:Monograph (Project Report)
Funders:CRC Reef Resarch Centre (CRD- Reef), Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), National Oceans Office (NOO)
Corporate Creators:AIMS, CSIRO, QM, QDPI, CRC Reef Research Centre, Sybilla Oczkowicz, Cassanda Rose, Posa Skelton, Claire Van der Geest, Cath Walsh
Projects:CRC-REEF C1.1.2: Seabed Biodiversity on the Continental Shelf of the Great Barrier, FRDC 2003/021: Mapping Bycatch & Seabed Benthos Assemblages in the GBR, NOO 2004/15: Assessment of the performance of acoustic remote sensing for Seabed
Business groups:Animal Science
Additional Information:© Australian Institute of Marine Science, CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, Queensland Museum, Queensland Department of Primary Industries, CRC Reef Research Centre, Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, and the National Oceans Office, 2007. This work is copyright. DISCLAIMER The authors have taken all reasonable steps to ensure that the information contents in this publication are accurate at the time of publication. Readers should ensure that they make appropriate inquiries to determine whether new information is available on the particular subject matter.
Keywords:Final report ; Great Barrier Reef; seabed; biodiversity; habitat; trawl; epibenthic sled; video. BRUVS; acoustics; benthos; bycatch; fish; distribution; abundance; biophysical relationships; surrogates; statistical models; classification; prediction; mapping; effects of trawling; ecological risk assessment; sustainability indicators; biological reference points; management strategy evaluation; effort reduction; zoning; survey design; stratification.
Subjects:Science > Statistics
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > By region or country > Australia > Great Barrier Reef
Live Archive:14 Dec 2010 02:17
Last Modified:24 Aug 2022 02:01

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