Mangrove Research Hub
The Mangrove Hub conducts world-leading research into mangrove and tidal wetland ecosystems.
The Hub Team
- Dr Norm Duke – mangrove ecologist since 1978
- Jock Mackenzie – tidal wetland scientist, MangroveWatch coordinator
To work with enthusiastic people and current technologies to understand and discover how mangrove and tidal wetland ecosystems function.
Vision with experience
All for the Monitoring and Evaluation of Coastal and Estuarine Shorelines
Innovation and Implementation – Methods for monitoring coastal shorelines
- Coastal Habitat Archive and Monitoring Program (CHAMP) – integrated program of mapping, aerial surveys and field surveys to identify habitats, their condition, the changes taking place, and the drivers of change.
- Mangrove and saltmarsh plant species surveys, guides and keys – botanical identification and description – includes new species.
- Wetland Cover Index – evaluations of tidal wetland condition from specific mapping of vegetation units.
- Shoreline Video Assessment Method – baseline archiving and on-going evaluations of shoreline status and condition.
- Long Plot Method – assessments of structure, biodiversity and biomass of mangrove forests.
- Carbon content of vegetation, soil and sediments – vegetation plots, and sediment coring.
- Tree wood cores and carbon dating – tree aging.
- Leaf scar nodes, wood rings of trees – mature and seedling plant growth histories.
- Litterfall and Shoot Observations – Mangrove Forest productivity and phenologies as the ‘pulse’ of the mangrove ecosystem.
- Leafy Shoot scores and Leaf Area Indices – quantification of mangrove forest foliage canopy densities.
- Light gap and storm damage evaluations – forest turnover and replacement processes.
- Pollution impact assessment – mangrove and saltmarsh habitat recovery potential.
- Estuarine and Coastal Shoreline Report Cards – status and condition scores.
Equipment and Resources
The Mangrove Hub is equipped with extensive libraries of published articles on mangrove and tidal wetlands, aerial photographic imagery, methodologies for mangrove research and monitoring, and a variety of field survey and support equipment (e.g. digital still cameras with GPS, video cameras with GPS, sediment and tree corers, 3-D imager instrument, field meters for water quality, GPSs). The TropWATER Centre provides full administrative, computing and telecommunications support for all aspects of its research and the Centre is well equipped for field surveys and laboratory studies.
Current Projects and Key Collaborators
Working with Traditional Owners to monitor shorelines
- Mua, Badu, Saibai, Boigu, Yam and other northern-central Torres Strait Island Rangers – Torres Strait Regional Authority.
- Eastern Princess Charlotte Bay Rangers – Balkanu Cape York Development Corporation & Alka Bawar Kalpowar Land Trust.
- Numbulwar and Ngukurr Rangers – – NT Natural Resource Management & Northern Land Council.
- Borroloola Rangers – NT Natural Resource Management & Northern Land Council.
- Normanton, Burketown and Mornington Island Land & Sea Rangers – Carpentaria Land Council Aboriginal Corporation.
- Port Curtis, Gladstone, Burnett Mary region Rangers – Gidarjil Development Corporation & Gladstone Ports Corporation.
- North Stradbroke Island & Moreton Bay – Quandamooka Aboriginal Corporation.
Outreach Engagement with Community Volunteers
- Cairns region and Trinity Inlet – Cairns and Far North Environment Centre (CAFNEC).
- Gladstone and Port Curtis area – Society for Growing Australian Plants Gladstone.
- Moreton Bay and Islands – Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland.
- Logan River estuary – Logan City Council, Jacobs Well Environment Centre, Kimberley College, Healthy Land and Water & Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland.
- Barwon Heads estuary – Barwon MangroveWatchers & The Nature Conservancy
Botanical discovery and Evolutionary Biogeography of Mangrove Plants
- Botanical publications – descriptions of plants, distribution maps and identification keys for all mangrove plant types in the world, as well as the reporting of new and undescribed species.
- Field identification guides – books and chapter publications, plus the development and publication of two apps for Apple and Google smart devices.
- The Mangrove iD App isan App for iPhones, iPad and android devices that lists, describes and illustrates all mangroves in the world – TropWATER Centre and MangroveWatch.
- Mangrove Clic! Australiais an App for iPhones and iPad devices that lists, describes and illustrates all mangroves in Australia plus additional search features to facilitate identification and reporting – Norman Wettenhall Foundation, Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland plus TropWATER Centre and MangroveWatch Ltd.
- Genetic characterisation and evolution of global mangrove plant species and hybrids – current collaboration with Laboratory of Plant Resources, School of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-Sen University, China.
- Mangroves of New Caledonia – book about mangroves and tidal wetlands of New Caledonia. This is a botanical taxonomy and guide to the mangroves and saltmarsh plants of New Caledonia. Partners include Sabrina Virly, EMR Mine-R-Eaux Nord SARL and Koniambo Nickel SAS.
Ecological Restoration and Rehabilitation of damaged Estuarine and Coastal Shorelines
- Golden Beach foreshore works involved bank reprofiling and restructuring of a damaged shoreline followed up with planting of mangrove and supratidal vegetation to provide both short-term and longer term stabilization of the shoreline – Healthy Land and Water, Caloundra City Council, Queensland Government, Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland and the Bunya Bunya Country Aboriginal Corporation.
- Kolan River estuarine bank restoration – Bundaberg Sugar, Burnett Mary Regional Group, Queensland Government & Gidarjil Development Corporation.
- Burnett River estuarine bank restoration – Gladstone Port Corporation, Burnett Mary Regional Group, Queensland Government & Gidarjil Development Corporation.
Identification and Assessment of Drivers of Change in Shoreline Environments – human and natural influences
- Port Curtis and Port Alma Coastal Habitat Archive and Monitoring Program (CHAMP) – Gladstone Ports Corporation Environmental Research and Monitoring Program and Gidarjil Development Corporation.
- ShoreView online public facility in development for viewing shorelines at one or more time periods, plus data classified from imagery to describe presence, structure, biomass, and condition of ecological and structural features – Gladstone Ports Corporation Environmental Research and Monitoring Program.
- Southern GBR CHAMP – National Environmental Science Program and Gidarjil Development Corporation.
- Gulf CHAMP in response to the mass mangrove dieback event – National Environmental Science Program (Northern Australia & Water Quality Hubs), NT NRM and Carpentaria Land Council Aboriginal Corporation.
- Daintree River estuary shoreline surveys – Earthwatch Australia, Daintree River Cruise Centre & CAFNEC.
Carbon sequestration by Mangrove and Saltmarsh habitats
- Eastern Princess Charlotte Bay carbon budgets – Balkanu Cape York Development Corporation & Alka Bawar Kalpowar Land Trust.
- Gulf CHAMP carbon budget and impact of dieback – National Environmental Science Program (Northern Australia & Water Quality Hubs), NT NRM and Carpentaria Land Council Aboriginal Corporation.
- Daintree River estuary carbon budgets – Earthwatch Australia, Daintree River Cruise Centre & CAFNEC.
- Port Curtis and Port Alma CHAMP – Gladstone Ports Corporation Environmental Research and Monitoring Program and Gidarjil Development Corporation.
- Pioneer River estuary and Mackay region carbon budgets – Mackay Christian College.
- Torres Strait islands carbon budgets – Torres Strait Regional Authority
MangroveWatch – group hub and website development and management.
MMM international professional network for mangrove researchers and stakeholders.