Environmental research, maps and data for tropical Australia

Recent articles

  • Published on
    23 April 2021
    This site provides an introduction to cumulative impacts on coral reefs and outlines some of the latest research into understanding the interactive effects of these impacts and which affect different coral types the most.   
  • Published on
    17 March 2021
    The information in this eco-narrative forms an initial characterisation of the physical, oceanographic and biological character of Arafura Marine Park, with a focus on results from a biodiversity and mapping survey undertaken by the NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub in 2020. This survey targeted two areas (see map below): Money Shoal as an example of shallow coral reef habitat, and Pillar Bank as an example of a deeper water mixed seabed environments. This excerpt focuses mainly on Money Shoal.
  • 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though they've been much studied, most data that shows where these turtles spend their time around Australia remains unpublished. 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. 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
    9 June 2020
    The North West Shoals to Shore Research Program investigated seabed habitats and their biodiversity to inform management and sustainable development of the region. Little is known about the fish found on and around the AC125. Part of the reason is that the AC125 is very deep, and thus difficult to observe. One question to ask about a habitat is how many different species of fish are found there - this is called fish species 'richness'. We explored this question for 5 study areas spread along the vast AC125 (see map below, read the full paper here).

Recent datasets

Modified on
10 August 2021
PreviewThis dataset corresponds to the zoning of Commonwealth Marine Parks managed by Parks Australia. This metadata is a non-authoritative extract maintained for the eAtlas. See links for the original and full metadata.
Modified on
9 August 2021
PreviewThis dataset is a compilation of available ocean temperature data, aerial and in-water bleaching observations during the 2016 and 2017 bleaching events on the Great Barrier Reef in order to estimate the total reef area impacted by coral bleaching and thermal hea
Modified on
21 June 2021
PreviewThe MARine Sediment (MARS) database contains detailed information on seabed sediment characteristics for samples collected from Australia's marine jurisdiction, including the Australian Antarctic Territory. It also includes the Geat Barrier Reef (GBR).
Modified on
9 June 2021
PreviewThis dataset summarises benthic surveys of seagrass for Dugong and Turtle habitats in the North-West Torres Strait for November 2015 and January 2016.
Modified on
1 June 2021
PreviewThe data set comprises 4 spreadsheets containing trace metal concentrations measured in waters benthic, suspended sediments and seagrasses collected across the Torres Strait during the NESP TWQ 5.14 project.