Northern futures: threats and opportunities for freshwater ecosystems

Douglas, Michael, Jackson, Sue, Setterfield, Samantha, Pusey, Brad, Davies, Peter, Kennard, Mark, Burrows, Damien, and Bunn, Stuart (2011) Northern futures: threats and opportunities for freshwater ecosystems. In: Pusey, B.J., (ed.) Aquatic Biodiversity in Northern Australia: Patterns, Threats and Future. CDU Press, Darwin, NT, pp. 203-220.

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Abstract

[Extract] The absence of extensive broad-scale intensive agriculture across northern Australia has left a vast area of tropical savanna largely intact. With less than 5% of the region having undergone landscape transformation, most catchment vegetation and associated riparian zones remain uncleared (although in most cases modified by weeds, changed fire regimes, feral animals and cattle grazing). The unregulated river conditions ensure important ecological connections are maintained between the catchment, river, fioodplain and the estuary (Chapter 3; Douglas et al. 2005). Overall, these systems are considered to be the most biologically diverse and "healthy" aquatic ecosystems in Australia (NLWRA 2002, Australian Tropical Rivers Group 2004). This was one of the few larger regions of the world identified by Vörösmarty et al (2010) to have a low level of threat to river ecosystems from both a human and biodiversity perspective. The rivers represent the highest concentration of free-fiowing systems in the world (Australian Tropical Rivers Group 2004), with only 23 water storages with a capacity greater than 1 GL across the entire region (Cresswell et al 2009).

Item ID: 21378
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-0-9808641-1-3
Date Deposited: 13 Apr 2012 04:34
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050204 Environmental Impact Assessment @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060204 Freshwater Ecology @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9604 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species > 960406 Control of Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species in Fresh, Ground and Surface Water Environments @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960505 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Forest and Woodlands Environments @ 50%
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