A “tribe” of Australian Rivers that have changed their ways has revealed the “tremendous” biodiversity that lies at the heart of the country’s rivers.
The ‘Ecology Network Analysis’ study found the “Ecological Network Analysis Project” (ENAP) network of Australian river basins, which has been tracking and tracking river biodiversity for decades, has detected a number of biodiversity hotspots in the region.
ENAP says it has identified four areas where a large number of river species are changing the way they behave.
“There are quite a few species that have gone from being in a very marginalised ecological state to being a highly valued and highly sought after species,” said Professor Robert Brown, lead author of the study.
“And that’s been the result of a number, many decades of research and a number decades of effort.”
Professor Brown said the changes were being driven by the rapid industrialisation of the region, which is changing how rivers are used for irrigation and other uses.
“The industrialisation has caused some species to be able to move from their more marginal ecological state into more highly valued species,” he said.
“There is a lot of work that needs to be done to understand what is happening to these species in relation to their natural habitat.”
“I think the next stage is to see if we can go back and look at the different species that are living at different points of time in the landscape, and then see how they’re evolving,” Professor Brown said.
Professor Brown and his team hope their work will be used to inform conservation strategies and planning, and help identify areas for future study.
Topics:environment,environmental-impact,environment-management,environment,biography,environment science,tas,brisbane-4000,brisbanon-4558,australiaContact Jacqui WrightMore stories from Western Australia