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Coastal saltmarsh vulnerability to climate change in SE Australia

Conference Paper


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Abstract


  • Coastal saltmarsh has been listed as an Endangered Ecological Community in New

    South Wales. Recent research has highlighted the importance of coastal saltmarsh as a

    source of nutrition for fish, a nocturnal feeding habitat for microbats, and a roosting

    habitat for several species of migratory shorebirds. Since European colonisation,

    coastal saltmarsh has been reclaimed for agricultural, residential and industrial use,

    and the past five decades has seen a consistent replacement of saltmarsh by mangrove

    throughout SE Australia.

    Analysis of data from the network of Surface Elevation Tables in NSW and Victoria

    has demonstrated a link between the replacement of saltmarsh by mangrove and

    relative sea-level rise. However, this is not the only potential climate change impact,

    given the strong inverse relationship between saltmarsh diversity and temperature in

    Australia. Saltmarsh species diversity increases with latitude, with temperature

    explaining more than 80 percent of variability in saltmarsh species numbers between

    bioregions. A southward translation of climatic zones in Australia would pose

    significant challenges to the preservation of saltmarsh diversity at a continental scale.

Publication Date


  • 2009

Citation


  • Saintilan, N. & Rogers, K. (2009). Coastal saltmarsh vulnerability to climate change in SE Australia. 2009 18th NSW Coastal Conference Papers (pp. 1-12). Australia: NSW Coastal Conference.

Ro Full-text Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1718&context=smhpapers

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/smhpapers/705

Start Page


  • 1

End Page


  • 12

Place Of Publication


  • Australia

Abstract


  • Coastal saltmarsh has been listed as an Endangered Ecological Community in New

    South Wales. Recent research has highlighted the importance of coastal saltmarsh as a

    source of nutrition for fish, a nocturnal feeding habitat for microbats, and a roosting

    habitat for several species of migratory shorebirds. Since European colonisation,

    coastal saltmarsh has been reclaimed for agricultural, residential and industrial use,

    and the past five decades has seen a consistent replacement of saltmarsh by mangrove

    throughout SE Australia.

    Analysis of data from the network of Surface Elevation Tables in NSW and Victoria

    has demonstrated a link between the replacement of saltmarsh by mangrove and

    relative sea-level rise. However, this is not the only potential climate change impact,

    given the strong inverse relationship between saltmarsh diversity and temperature in

    Australia. Saltmarsh species diversity increases with latitude, with temperature

    explaining more than 80 percent of variability in saltmarsh species numbers between

    bioregions. A southward translation of climatic zones in Australia would pose

    significant challenges to the preservation of saltmarsh diversity at a continental scale.

Publication Date


  • 2009

Citation


  • Saintilan, N. & Rogers, K. (2009). Coastal saltmarsh vulnerability to climate change in SE Australia. 2009 18th NSW Coastal Conference Papers (pp. 1-12). Australia: NSW Coastal Conference.

Ro Full-text Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1718&context=smhpapers

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/smhpapers/705

Start Page


  • 1

End Page


  • 12

Place Of Publication


  • Australia