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The conservation-related benefits of a systematic marine biological sampling programme: the Tasmanian reef bioregionalisation as a case study


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Edgar, GJ and Moverley, J and Barrett, NS and Peters, D and Reed, C (1997) The conservation-related benefits of a systematic marine biological sampling programme: the Tasmanian reef bioregionalisation as a case study. Biological Conservation, 79 (2-3). pp. 227-240. ISSN 0006-3207

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In order to maximise the conservation value of sites within a proposed system of representative marine protected areas ( MPAs) around Tasmania, quantitative surveys of plants and animals were made at over 150 shallow rocky reef sites around the Tasmanian coastline and Bass Strait islands. Data were analysed using several dierent meth- ods (overlap of species ranges, multidimensional scaling and ecotone analysis) to produce a state bioregionalisa- lion. Reef communities in the northern Bass Strait area were found to be distinctly different from those occurring further south, and are considered here to reflect a division between two biogeographical provinces. These two areas were each divisible into four biogeographical regions (bioregions), which occurred along the northern, north- eastern, southeastern, southern and western coasts of Tasmania, and around the Kent Group, the Furneaux Group and King Island in Bass Strait. At least one marine reserve within each bioregion would be required within an integrated system of representative MPAs. In addition to the production of a state-wide bioregionalisation and the identification of appropriate MPA sites, the systematic sampling programme generated a number of other bene- fits. Tasmanian data have been used as baseline data (1) to assess the impact of MPAs after they have been declared,' (2) to determine the biologicial effects of an oil spill,. (3) to monitor changes in the ranges of introduced species (e.g. the kelp Undaria pinnatifda ) and to detect their impacts on native species, and (4) to identify asso- ciations between marine plants and animals, including species of commercial importance. Data are also expected to be used for monitoring long-term effecis of `climate change.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: marine; Tasmanian reef; biological sampling
Journal or Publication Title: Biological Conservation
Page Range: pp. 227-240
ISSN: 0006-3207
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1016/S0006-3207(96)00095-X
Additional Information: The definitive version is available at http://www.sciencedirect.com
Date Deposited: 23 Dec 2010 23:16
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 04:15
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