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EARTH SCIENCE | BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION | ANIMALS/INVERTEBRATES

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  • Between 2009-2012, Geoscience Australia conducted three surveys to Joseph Bonaparte Gulf and the Timor Sea on the R.V. Solander, in collaboration with the Australian Institute of Science and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory. The study areas overlapped the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve and the carbonate banks and terraces within it. The surveys were conducted as part of the Australian Government's Energy Security Program (2007-2011) and the National Environment Research Program (2011-2015). On the surveys, a benthic sled was deployed to collect biological samples from the seafloor. Samples were sorted onboard according to phylum, photographed and then sent to taxonomists for species-level identifications. This catalogue includes all onboard photographs taken from identified samples. Sponges were the only group of which all samples were identified, but they include high proportions of unnamed or undescribed species. The catalogue also includes taxonomic identification sheets so that users can cross-reference the species names and images with location and depth.

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    Between 2009-2012, Geoscience Australia conducted three surveys to Joseph Bonaparte Gulf and the Timor Sea on the R.V. Solander, in collaboration with the Australian Institute of Science and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory. The study areas overlapped the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve and the carbonate banks and terraces within it. The surveys were conducted as part of the Australian Government's Energy Security Program (2007-2011) and the National Environment Research Program (2011-2015). On the surveys, a benthic sled was deployed to collect biological samples from the seafloor. Samples were sorted onboard according to phylum, photographed and then sent to taxonomists for species-level identifications. This dataset provides a list of all identified sponge species. The associated image catalogue of collected sponges can be accessed here: https://metadata.imas.utas.edu.au/geonetwork/srv/eng/catalog.search#/metadata/1216e0f4-099c-49f6-96f7-ed3eadc0cd15

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    The Flinders CMR survey was a pilot study undertaken in August 2012 as part of the National Marine Biodiversity Hub's National monitoring, evaluation and reporting theme. The aim of this theme is to develop a bluepint for the sustained monitoring of the South-east Commonwealth Marine Reserve Network. The particular aims of the survey were twofold; 1) to contribute to an inventory of demersal and epibenthic conservation values in the reserve and 2) to test methodologies and deployment strategies in order to inform future survey design efforts. Several gear types were deployed; including multibeam sonar, shallow-water (less than 150m) Baited Remote Underwater Video (BRUVs), deep- water BRUVs, towed video and digital stereo stills. This resource contains the shallow-water BRUV footage captured on the FLinders CMR shelf (less than 150 m). Stereo BRUV's were deployed using a probabalistic and spatially-balanced survey design called Generalized Random Tessellation Stratified (GRTS). Habitats were identified in a previous multibeam survey and consisted of 'mixed reef' (containing patchy reef) and sand. Mixed reef habitat was targeted in this survey (9 GRTS mixed reef sites versus 3 sand sites). A total of 60 stereo BRUVs were deployed. Data contained here represents footage collected using these drops and the associated scored data (abundance (MaxN) and lengths).

  • The Marine Futures Project was designed to benchmark the current status of key Western Australian marine ecosystems, based on an improved understanding of the relationship between marine habitats, biodiversity and our use of these values. Approximately 1,500 km2 of seafloor were mapped using hydroacoustics (Reson 8101 Multibeam), and expected benthic habitats "ground-truthed" using towed video transects and baited remote underwater video systems. Both sources of information were then combined in a spatial predictive modelling framework to produce fine-scale habitat maps showing the extent of substrate types, biotic formations, etc. Surveys took place across 9 study areas, including the Abrolhos Islands, a group of 122 limestone outcrops surrounded by fringing reed ca. 60km west from the city of Geraldton. The Abrolhos research location is the most northerly of the Marine Futures sampling sites, selected due to the unique mixture of tropical coral reef habitats, and temperate reef and seagrass communities.The hydroacoustics data were processed to construct full coverage maps of bathymetry and textural information.

  • The Marine Futures Project was designed to benchmark the current status of key Western Australian marine ecosystems, based on an improved understanding of the relationship between marine habitats, biodiversity and our use of these values. Approximately 1,500 km2 of seafloor were mapped using hydroacoustics (Reson 8101 Multibeam), and expected benthic habitats "ground-truthed" using towed video transects and baited remote underwater video systems. Both sources of information were then combined in a spatial predictive modelling framework to produce fine-scale habitat maps showing the extent of substrate types, biotic formations, etc. Surveys took place across 9 study areas, including the Capes region of southwest Western Australia. The area is one of the most diverse temperate marine environments in Australia. Warm, tropical waters of the Leeuwin Current mingle with the cool waters of the Capes Current, resulting in high finfish diversity, including tropical and temperate species, as well as internationally significant seagrass diversity with meadows occurring at depths greater than 40 metres. The region's geomorphology is complex with an array of intertidal and subtidal reef environments. Many marine plants and animals are endemic to the southern coast of Australia due to its long geographical isolation, with seagrass, algae and estuarine habitats functioning as spawning, nursery and feeding grounds for a wide range of invertebrates and fish. Significant numbers of marine mammals also frequent the area, including the blue whale, the largest of all marine creatures.

  • The Marine Futures Project was designed to benchmark the current status of key Western Australian marine ecosystems, based on an improved understanding of the relationship between marine habitats, biodiversity and our use of these values. Approximately 1,500 km2 of seafloor were mapped using hydroacoustics (Reson 8101 Multibeam), and expected benthic habitats "ground-truthed" using towed video transects and baited remote underwater video systems. Both sources of information were then combined in a spatial predictive modelling framework to produce fine-scale habitat maps showing the extent of substrate types, biotic formations, etc. Surveys took place across 9 study areas, including Rottnest Island, a popular family holiday destination just 20 km off the Perth coast. One of the main drawcards of the island is the diverse marine life inhabiting the surounding waters, which Western Australian locals and tourists can experience by snorkelling, diving, boating and fishing. The marine environment around Rottnest includes seagrass meadows, kelp-covered reef tops, coral patches, and sponge gardens in deeper water. As a result of the warm, southward flowing Leeuwin Current, the island represents the southern limit of the distributions of many tropical corals and fish. The marine life around Rottnest therefore represents a unique mix of tropical and temperate species and habitats.

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    The Tasman Fracture CMR AUV survey was a pilot study undertaken in 2014/15 as part of the National Marine Biodiversity Hub's National monitoring, evaluation and reporting theme. The aim of this theme is to develop a bluepint for the sustained monitoring of the South-east Commonwealth Marine Reserve Network. The particular aim of the survey was to contribute to an inventory of the distribution and abundance of demersal fishes in the reserve and adjacent reference sites using BRUVs. Data contained here represents footage collected using these drops and the associated scored data (abundance and lengths).

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    The Marine Futures Project was designed to benchmark the current status of key Western Australian marine ecosystems, based on an improved understanding of the relationship between marine habitats, biodiversity and our use of these values. Approximately 1,500 km2 of seafloor were mapped using hydroacoustics (Reson 8101 Multibeam), and expected benthic habitats "ground-truthed" using towed video transects and baited remote underwater video systems. Both sources of information were then combined in a spatial predictive modelling framework to produce fine-scale habitat maps showing the extent of substrate types, biotic formations, etc. This project record provides linkage to each of metadata records describing data collected from the 9 study areas: Jurien Bay, Rottnest, Abrolhos Islands, Point Ann, Middle Island, Mount Gardner, Broke Inlet, and Geographe Bay​. To access the source datasets from each study site in their original (unaggregated) form, see child records linked to this parent record.

  • The Marine Futures Project was designed to benchmark the current status of key Western Australian marine ecosystems, based on an improved understanding of the relationship between marine habitats, biodiversity and our use of these values. Approximately 1,500 km2 of seafloor were mapped using hydroacoustics (Reson 8101 Multibeam), and expected benthic habitats "ground-truthed" using towed video transects and baited remote underwater video systems. Both sources of information were then combined in a spatial predictive modelling framework to produce fine-scale habitat maps showing the extent of substrate types, biotic formations, etc. Surveys took place across 9 study areas, including Mount Gardner, a site located just off Two People’s Bay, 30km east of the town of Albany. The area is host to a number of human uses, including recreational and commercial fishing, diving, surfing, recreational boat use and shipping and mining. The marine environment at this location is different to the other three study locations on the south coast, in that it encompasses the protected Two Peoples Bay with seagrass and invertebrate communities and the more exposed rocky and macroalgal reefs around the Mt Gardner peninsula itself.

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    The Tasman Fracture CMR AUV survey was a pilot study undertaken in 2014/15 as part of the National Marine Biodiversity Hub's National monitoring, evaluation and reporting theme. The aim of this theme is to develop a blueprint for the sustained monitoring of the South-east Commonwealth Marine Reserve Network. The particular aim of the survey was to contribute to an inventory of the distribution and abundance of southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsi). Data contained here represents the data collected from lobster potting component of the study. This includes lobster abundance, gender and length. Bycatch is also recorded.