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Torres Strait Seagrass: climate, disturbance and trends

TropWATER and the Torres Strait Regional Authority Land and Sea Management Unit partner to provide research in the Torres Strait. A key focus of this program is understanding the dynamics of change in the seagrasses resources and the environmental factors that underpin those changes. Seagrass meadows in the Torres Strait are a major source of primary production and underpin a healthy marine environment.

Specific outcomes of the program include:

  • TropWATER and Torres Strait community research networks providing education, training and support for seagrass research and monitoring;
  • Increasing the number of trained rangers;
  • Documenting the relationship between change in seagrass meadows and environmental factors such as light availability, water temperature, rainfall and tidal exposure;
  • Document the ability of Torres Strait seagrasses to recover;
  • An estimate of the productivity of Mabuiag Island seagrasses, compared with other globally important ecosystems;
  • A comprehensive atlas and GIS database of marine habitats in the Torres Strait, including seagrasses, algae and coral, in  areas sensitive to shipping accidents and oil spills;
  • An understanding of seasonal change in Torres Strait deep water seagrasses in the Dugong Sanctuary;
  • Torres Strait Seagrass Observer Program

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