Workshopping seagrass (Wirriya Jalyanu) restoration in Shark Bay (Gathaagudu)

November 6, 2020

wire weed seagrass seedlings floating in teh water at Shark Bay
Wire weed (Amphibolis antarctica) seedlings spend several weeks to months floating with the currents and tides, before eventually sinking to the seafloor and catching hold of something to grow on. Image: Rachel Austin

Baseline genomic data collection and assisting natural recovery of seagrass meadows

Baseline genomic data collection and assisting natural recovery of seagrass meadows
Abstract:

The goal of NESP Project E6 is to work alongside the Malgana Traditional Owners to assist recovery of the dominant seagrasses, Amphibolis antarctica and Posidonia australis following the 2011 marine heat wave.  Therefore, this project has been developed and implemented with consultation and collaboration between UWA scientists and the Malgana people. Collectively, we have established strong lines of communication and coordinated processes for conducting field work, organising and implementing workshops, engaging in ecological and restoration training exercises and practice, as well as brainstorming and organising upcoming community events, including the seagrass festival to be held in April 2021 in Denham, Shark Bay. 
Our project successfully (i) developed baseline restoration genetic diversity and connectivity data of the two impacted seagrasses which was used to select plants and sites for restoration, and (ii) by incorporating the baseline genetic information, assisted the natural recovery of seagrass meadows through the collection of reproductive and vegetative propagules for on-ground restoration activities within selected sites.  
 

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