Port of Karumba long-term seagrass monitoring: November 2011

Carter, A.B., McKenna, S.A., and Rasheed, M.A. (2012) Port of Karumba long-term seagrass monitoring: November 2011. Report. Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI), Cairns, QLD, Australia.

[img] PDF (Published Version) - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only



A network of long-term seagrass monitoring sites has been established at various port locations throughout Queensland to assist in the planning and management of port activities to ensure minimal impact on the marine environment and fish habitats, including seagrass meadows. Seagrass meadows provide important ecological functions in the coastal zone, including provision of primary productivity in the marine environment and nursery habitat for key fisheries species. The wide distribution of seagrasses in Queensland, and their capacity to show measurable responses to changes in water quality make them ideal candidates for monitoring the health of the marine environment.

This report details the results of the November 2011 monitoring surveys in the Port of Karumba. Karumba seagrass meadows were in a stable and productive state. The Karumba meadow remains spatially expansive and dense, with biomass and area values above 18-year averages. Meadow area had increased 13% and meadow biomass increased 17% since the 2010 monitoring survey. Above average seagrass area and biomass continued to be correlated with above average river flow and below average air temperature.

Results of the survey indicate that anthropogenic activities including dredging and other port and urban activities are unlikely to have had a negative impact on seagrasses in Karumba during 2011. Results of this survey also indicate that seagrass were in a robust condition and likely to be resilient to impacts associated with regular scheduled maintenance dredging in 2012. However, natural variation in climatic conditions has the capacity to reduce seagrass resilience in the future to the point where meadows become vulnerable to activities such as dredging. Long-term monitoring of Karumba's seagrass meadows provides an understanding of factors which influence natural variability in seagrass meadows. This information is vital when separating the effects of any future anthropogenic disturbance from natural variability.

Item ID: 39661
Item Type: Report (Report)
Keywords: seagrass, recovery, resilience, marine monitoring, port development, dredging
Funders: Far North Queensland Ports Corporation (FNQPC) trading as Ports North, Qld Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI)
Projects and Grants: DEEDI Marine Ecology Group (MEG)
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2015 05:52
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960503 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Coastal and Estuarine Environments @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 50%
Downloads: Total: 1
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page