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Aquatic Conservation Assessments (ACA) and AquaBAMM

Aquatic Conservation Assessments (ACAs) are non-social and non-economic and designed with the sole intent of identifying conservation values of wetlands at a user-defined scale.

Aquatic Biodiversity Assessment Mapping Method (AquaBAMM) is the method used to develop the ACAs. The method was first trialled in the Burnett River catchment. AquaBAMM identifies relative wetland conservation values within a specified area—usually a catchment— using criteria, indicators and measures (CIM) that are based on a large body of national and international literature.

Find out more about accessing the data and reports on the get mapping help page.

The riverine and non-riverine data may also be accessed through WetlandMaps.

Environmental reports online provide information on specific environmental values, by location.

See the AquaBAMM information sheet or email biodiversity.planning♲

Aquatic Biodiversity Assessment Mapping Method

Quick facts


was originally developed in 2006 in the riverine wetlands of the Burnett River catchment. Since then the methodology, criteria and measures have been adapted to include riverine, non-riverine and estuarine wetlands.

Aquatic Conservation Assessments (ACA) and AquaBAMM

The Aquatic Biodiversity Assessment and Mapping Method (AquaBAMM) is a comprehensive method that identifies relative wetland conservation values within a specified study area (usually a catchment). AquaBAMM is used to produce an aquatic conservation assessment (ACA) of wetlands within that area. The results provide a powerful decision support tool that can be comprehensively interrogated through a Geographic Information System (GIS) platform.

ACAs have now been undertaken for a number of areas within Queensland (see table below) and provide a powerful decision-support tool that can be interrogated through a GIS platform. However, no marine ACAs have yet been undertaken.

The results of an ACA provide a decision-support tool that can be used in a wide range of applications including, but not limited to:

  • determining priorities for protection or rehabilitation of and on-ground investment in aquatic ecosystems
  • assisting with local and regional water resource and planning processes
  • contributing to impact assessment of large-scale development
  • identifying aquatic assets
  • providing input to broader social and economic evaluation and prioritisation processes.


Study area Riverine (R)
Non-riverine (NR)
Estuarine (E)
Marine (M) and Springs (SP) metadata
ACA version Release date
metadata Baffle Creek1 R, NR 1.1 02/02/2009
Burnett River5 R 1.1 18/07/2006
Cape York Catchments R, NR 1.1 09/12/2012
Condamine River 4 R, NR 1.1 02/02/2009
Eastern Gulf of Carpentaria R, NR 1.1 30/06/2018
Great Barrier Reef2 R 1.1 30/10/2009
Lake Eyre and Bulloo Basins R, NR, SP 1.1 30/06/2016
Great Barrier Reef2 NR 1.3 15/4/2011
Queensland Murray-Darling Basin3 R, NR 1.4 31/07/2011
Southeast Queensland R, NR 1.1 09/10/2015
Wide Bay-Burnett Catchments R, NR 1.1 12/11/2010
Aquatic Conservation Assessment - Queensland - combined layer 6 NR 1.5 20/07/2018
ACA related assessment (i.e. assessment has similarities, however does not strictly adhere to the AquaBAMM)
Baffle to Fitzroy Coast E, M 1.17 30/03/2019

1 The Baffle Creek Riverine ACA is superseded by the Great Barrier Reef riverine and non-riverine ACA, which includes coverage of the Baffle Creek Catchment.
2 The Great Barrier Reef Study ACAs include the following catchments: Baffle, Barron, Belyando, Black, Bowen, Boyne, Burdekin lower, Burdekin upper, Burnett, Calliope, Comet, Curtis Island, Daintree, Dawson, Don, Fitzroy, Haughton, Herbert, Hinchinbrook Island, Isaac, Johnstone, Mackenzie, Mossman, Mulgrave-Russell, Murray, Nogoa, O’Connell, Pioneer, Plane, Proserpine, Ross, Shoalwater, Styx, Tully and Waterpark.
3 The Queensland Murray-Darling Basin ACA includes the following catchments: Border Rivers, Condamine/Balonne, Moonie, Nebine, Paroo and Warrego.
4 The Condamine River ACA is superseded by the Queensland Murray-Darling Basin riverine and non-riverine ACA
5 The Burnett River Riverine ACA is superseded by the Wide Bay-Burnett riverine ACA, which includes coverage of the Burnett River catchment
6 Combined non-riverine layer for the following areas: Cape York Catchments, Eastern Gulf of Carpentaria, Great Barrier Reef, Lake Eyre and Bulloo Basins, Queensland Murray-Darling Basin, Southeast Queensland and Wide Bay-Burnett Catchments
7 The Baffle to Fitzroy Coast Common Conservation Values assessment, is not an ACA produced under the AQUABAMM. However, criteria adopted were derived from the AQUABAMM criterion.

Wetland on-line education modules

A series of on-line education modules, including Aquatic Conservation Assessment using AquaBAMM, has been prepared as a resource for people who want to learn more about wetlands.

You can use these to meet your learning and training needs. This information should be used in conjunction with information found on this website.

Pages under this section

Last updated: 20 July 2018

This page should be cited as:

Aquatic Conservation Assessments (ACA) and AquaBAMM, WetlandInfo 2013, Department of Environment and Science, Queensland, viewed 4 August 2020, <>.

Queensland Government
WetlandInfo   —   Department of Environment and Science