Predicting seagrass connectivity in a disturbed environment

Jackson, Emma, Nielsen, Jesper, Weatherall, Emily, Bryant, Catherine, Jones, Conor, Hendry, Rebecca, and Campbell, Marnie (2014) Predicting seagrass connectivity in a disturbed environment. In: 51st Australian Marine Sciences Association annual conference: investigating our marine nation: abstracts1st Annual Conference: program handbook and abstracts. p. 101. From: AMSA 2014 Investigating our Marine Nation: 51st Annual Conference of the Australian Marine Sciences Association, 6-10 July 2014, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory.

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Connectivity between local populations of seagrass may strengthen regional seagrass population resilience by maintaining genetic exchange and allowing re-colonisation of disturbed patches. Therefore understanding the relative connectivity of different seagrass meadows allows management decisions on seagrass conservation and aids the identification of areas suitable for seagrass restoration efforts, but where initial colonisation may be impeded by issues related to connectivity. The dispersal of clonal seagrasses is achieved through asexual spreading (rhizome elongation), vegetative fragments and seed dispersal. Distances travelled very with seed and fragment settling velocities, and the strength and directions of wind and tidal driven currents. Retention and subsequent colonisation of a site depends on the bed shear stress climate, rugosities and suitable environmental factors for the germination and growth of the seagrass. In this study we examine the seed and fragment settlement rates of five subtropical seagrass species. Settlement rates and both biomass and distribution maps of seagrass in Port Curtis Bay, Queensland, were used in conjunction with erosive/depositional properties of seeds and fragments as inputs into an advection dispersion model. The numerical modelling was performed using BMT WBM's in house flexible mesh finite volume solver TUFLOW-FV to simulate the advection and dispersion of a mass of seeds/fragments within the hydrodynamic field where the rates of settling, deposition and erosion are specified by the modeller. Outputs of the models are discussed in terms of the persistence of seagrass distribution in Port Curtis Bay and in relation to the management and restoration of these important habitats.

Item ID: 45215
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
ISBN: 9780987590817
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Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2016 23:46
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050102 Ecosystem Function @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences @ 50%
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