Benthic Mapping

Marine scientists and managers have developed a system of marine parks that encompasses the diverse range of biological communities in South Australian waters.

The only practical means of planning and assessing the effectiveness of these networks, and marine resource management in general, is collating biological information from various levels of the marine ecosystem and using it to learn about broad-scale, biogeographical and ecological processes.

Data for detailed habitat mapping are collected using various techniques such as multi-beam and sidescan acoustics, towed video and diver surveys.

Underwater video assessments of fish communities and reef surveys also provide detailed information about the character and condition of key habitat types.

Spatial variation in these communities is examined on a large scale and is used to plan, zone and monitor the effectiveness of marine parks.

Mangrove and saltmarsh mapping

Mangrove and saltmarsh communities have been systematically mapped across South Australian estuaries and the associated data used to determine the conservation status of these habitats in South Australia and list those in need of protection.

Mapping of South Australia's 102 estuaries was completed in 2009. Mapping has included the outer boundaries of each estuary as well as the boundaries between internal habitats.

The mapping provides knowledge of the extent of estuaries and the type and size of the habitats present. This information will support planning and management and create a better understanding of the estuarine assets of South Australia.

More information can be found in NatureMaps:

  • Benthic mapping
  • Saltmarsh and mangrove (estuary) mapping