Benthic Habitats and Demersal Biodiversity


Objective: Provision of empirical data on benthic and demersal diversity and ecological processes to underpin resource management.

An AIMS towed video sled being prepared for deployment.

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Approach

Project

Activity

Benthic habitats of the Ancient Coastline KEF (Project 2a)

2a.1 Field Surveys of Ancient Coastline KEF

Three voyages on RV Solander comprising multibeam mapping, collection of physical data (sediments, water quality etc), towed video observations of benthos and BRUVS surveys of demersal fishes.

 

2a.2 Data Analysis and Synthesis to Characterise Benthic Biodiversity

Scoring of video imagery for quantitative assessment of the biodiversity, distribution and abundance of benthic and demersal communities across survey areas of the Ancient Coastline KEF.

 

2a.3 Predictive Modelling of the Distribution of Benthic Habitats of the Ancient Coastline

Develop and validate benthic habitat models and predict the distribution of key habitats along the length of the Ancient Coastline KEF (nominally encompassing the area from NW Cape to Broome) based on physical attributes of the seabed.

Patterns and processes of Pearl Oyster distribution from 40-100m depth (Project 2b)

2b.1 Field Surveys of Pearl Oyster Distributions in 40-100m Adjacent to Eighty Mile Beach

Two voyages on RV Solander comprising multibeam mapping, collection of physical data (sediments, water quality, currents etc.) and towed video observations of oyster distributions. Collection of oyster samples using benthic sled for population genetic studies.

 

2b.2 Predictive Modelling of Pearl Oyster Distribution and Abundance

Develop and validate benthic habitat models and predict the distribution and abundance of pearl oysters in 40-100m depth adjacent to Eighty Mile Beach, based on physical attributes of the seabed.

 

2b.3 Seascape Genetics of Pearl Oyster Connectivity

Population genetic study of larval dispersal of pearl oysters combined with oceanographic modelling to understand connectivity between deep and shallow populations.