You are here

Home > Park management > Environment > Science and adaptive management > Marine monitoring > Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef biota - sea snails. Photo by AME.

Intertidal reef biota - sea snails. Photo by AME.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef biota - limpets. Photo by AME.

Intertidal reef biota - limpets. Photo by AME.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef biota - mussels. Photo by Jan Barton, Deakin University.

Intertidal reef biota - mussels. Photo by Jan Barton, Deakin University.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Measuring mobile invertebrates. Photo by AME.

Measuring mobile invertebrates. Photo by AME.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Measuring cover of habitat forming species. Photo by AME.

Measuring cover of habitat forming species. Photo by AME.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef surveys. Photo by AME.

Intertidal reef surveys. Photo by AME.

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

Intertidal reef monitoring sites (in red).

Intertidal reef monitoring sites (in red).

2 years ago from Unknown LDAP UserParks Victoria

Location: Intertidal reef monitoring

An Intertidal reef monitoring program (IRMP) was established in 2003 at: Point Danger, Barwon Bluff, Mushroom Reef, Point Cooke, Jawbone and Ricketts Point marine sanctuaries.  The program has expanded to include Point Addis, Bunurong and Port Phillip Heads Marine National Parks and Merri Marine Sanctuary. 

The IRMP began with the aim to track changes invertebrates and macroalgae abundances due to human use, including trampling and fossicking, of the reef platforms.  The aims of the program have expanded to investigate biodiversity, climate change effects and introduced marine species.

The results provide Parks Victoria with information regarding the status of natural values and threatening processes, and the magnitude of trends through time. With this information, Parks Victoria can make informed decisions about management priorities and responses.

Methods summary

The monitoring methods involve surveying a single reef during a single low tide, targeting the most common reef type at each intertidal reef (Hart and Edmunds 2005). The survey is conducted along transects running from the high to the low shore. The density of mobile invertebrates and the percentage cover of macroalgae and aggregated non-mobile invertebrates are surveyed within quadrats along the transects (Hart and Edmunds 2005). 

Sites are surveyed in April/May every year.

Current Results

The University of Melbourne conducted a preliminary analysis of the data collected prior to 2007 and compared sites within MPAs with similar sites (reference sites) outside the MPAs.  The results were limited because only two surveys per site were available at the time, there was no data before declaration and the data sets were small.  The analysis could not detect a difference in species richness between MPAs and reference sites.  It was also difficult to detect any differences in species abundance between sites. 

A separate, more recent research project by the University of Melbourne found that some limpet species were significantly larger in MPAs compared to non-MPA sites.  Previous national and international studies have shown that it can take well over a decade after declaration before changes in species size and abundance in MPAs can be detected.

A targeted analysis of monitoring data in relation to conservation outcomes for each marine national park and sanctuary will be carried out by 2013 (see Future Monitoring Directions).

A Long-nosed Potoroo caught on camera Click to view the news RSS feed.

Cameras record mammal night life at the Prom

10 Mar 2015

Remote cameras have revealed that Wilsons Promontory is home to a rich population of native mammals including endangered and threatened species such as Long-nosed Potoroos, Southern Brown Bandicoots, Long-nosed Bandicoots and White footed Dunnarts. Parks Victoria’s Environmental Scientist, Dr Mark Antos said it was particularly exciting news that rare and…

View all latest news

What's on

Click to view RSS Feed

What's on for March in Albert Park

1 Mar 2015 - 31 Mar 2015

A wide variety of events are held at Albert Park throughout the year. Events range from fun runs and sporting tournaments to other community events. See the full calendar here.

Click to view RSS Feed

Easter Holiday Discovery Program

30 Mar 2015 12:00am - 10 Apr 2015 12:00am

The holiday discovery program at Wilsons Promontory National Park offers an exciting array of activities for all ages exploring our marine and coastal environments. Become a bush detective, explore rock pools at low tide, decorate a take home reusable bag with stencils of native plants, look through binoculars at the…

Click to view RSS Feed

Grampians Naturewise Experience

30 Mar 2015 8:30am - 1 Apr 2015 6:00pm

Come join our Grampians Naturewise holiday experience in Victoria! You'll join park rangers to track and protect the elusive Brush-tailed Phascogales. Go behind the scenes and enjoy the breathtaking landscape with local walks while assisting with endangered species monitoring. The Grampians National Park has recently captured footage of a rare…

Click to view RSS Feed

Lilly Pilly Cave Tour

31 Mar 2015 10:00am-11:30am

A rare opportunity to visit spectacular caves located to the north of Buchan. Be prepared for something very special. The tour requires a 14 km drive north of Buchan and a reasonable level of fitness.