Environmental research, maps and data for tropical Australia

Recent articles

  • Published on
    11 June 2020
    Global populations of green (IUCN listing endangered) and hawksbill (IUCN listing critically endangered) turtles are declining due to a range of threats. Australia supports some of the largest rookeries (nesting sites) for these turtles in the Indo-Pacific. Even though they've been much studied, most data that shows where these turtles spend their time around Australia remains unpublished. This is a problem because there are many coastal and offshore activities such as mining, commercial fishing and pollution that may threaten these species. In order to protect them, we need to know the areas that are important to them; the areas where they spend time during the nesting season, their migratory routes and the areas where they forage (feed). In the absence of hard data, the Australian Government have previously designated Habitat Critical Areas as part of the Recovery Plan for Marine Turtles and Biologically Important Areas based on expert scientific knowledge. Here, we set out to quantify and map the important areas that turtles use to help refine these protected areas and assist with turtle conservation management.
  • Published on
    9 June 2020
    The Silver Lipped Oyster, Pinctada maxima, forms the basis of a historical fishery in tropical Western Australia, estimated to be worth $A61 million in 2013. This fishery supplies pearl and mother of pearl markets through wild harvest of P. maxima stock, augmented more recently with aquaculture. Eighty Mile Beach is a key harvesting area, where P. maxima is reported to occur at depths from 8-40 metres. P. maxima is often found where the seabed is solid and hard and can support communities of filter feeders like sponges. Some reports, however, suggest that P. maxima can survive at depths of up to 120 metres (see p 39 in this report). Studies have shown that populations of P. maxima within the region are highly connected to one another. This raises the question of whether oysters located deeper than those safely visited by divers (beyond 30-40 metres) may help replenish stocks in shallower areas. At present, the extent to which P. maxima occurs at these depths (>40 metres) within the region near Eighty Mile Beach is poorly known.
  • Published on
    5 February 2020
  • Published on
    16 December 2019
    Bardi-Jawi Marine Rangers partner with marine scientists to research fish and coral recruitment processes in the Kimberley.
  • Published on
    20 May 2019
    Data is now available for download from the AIMS Long Term Monitoring Program and the Marine Monitoring Programs.

Recent datasets

Modified on
30 November 2020
PreviewThis dataset shows larval connectivities between reefs that exceeded, and did not exceed, thermal thresholds for damage during the 2016/2017 Great Barrier Reef bleaching events.
Modified on
30 November 2020
PreviewThis dataset summarises 35 years of seagrass data collection (1984-2018) within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area into one GIS shapefile containing seagrass presence and absence survey data for 81,387 sites.
Modified on
30 November 2020
PreviewThis dataset presents the programs for enabling communication between the WiSA automated irrigation system and the decision support tool – IrrigWeb for NESP TWQ Project 3.1.2.
Modified on
30 November 2020
PreviewThe majority of data integrated in NESP 4.6 was based on either a) expert elicitation and surveys, or b) literature reviews. Two case studies used data from additional sources:
Modified on
25 November 2020
PreviewRNTBCs (Registered Native Title Bodies Corporate) are corporations which have prescribed functions under the Native Title Act 1993 (NTA) to hold, protect and manage determined native title and ensure certainty for governments