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Mangroves and associated communities of Moreton Bay

The Moreton Bay region has approximately 20,000 ha intertidal communities, mostly mangroves and saltmarsh.

A program to monitor the mangroves and associated communities within Moreton Bay was established by the Queensland Government 2011.

The information provided below replaces the Mangroves and associated communities of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia: change in extent 1955-1997-2012 report (released 2016)[1] and extends the period to include 2012-2016 (see table 1, released 2019).

Click on image to view the Moreton Bay mangrove and associated communities extent using interactive map viewer

Quick facts

7
of the recognised woody species of mangrove occur in Moreton Bay
3,400km2
of open and sheltered waterways and islands can be found in Moreton Bay.
Brochure
for print is available Mangrove and associated communities of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia: change in extent 1955-1997-2012-2016.

Change in extent between 1955 and 2016 of <em>Avicennia marina </em>subsp. <em>australasica</em> closed-forest, open-forest, woodland, low open-forest, low woodland, low open-woodland (1B(i)) Moreton Bay. Map by Queensland Government Moreton Bay (defined as the area from Caloundra to Southport)

Intertidal ecosystems, including mangrove and saltmarsh communities, provide significant social, cultural, economic and ecological values.

While these communities are currently protected under legislation, they are vulnerable to impacts from coastal development as well as from changes to natural processes such as siltation, nutrient runoff and climate.

Mangrove communities have increased in area by 1,213 ha (8.6%) between 1955 and 2016 whereas saltmarsh communities (including samphire, marine couch and claypan) have lost 6,000 ha (65.7%) of their 1955 extent. Casuarina glauca communities have lost 482 ha (31.8%) of their area during the same period. The spatial extent of each mangrove and associated community are described for the period from 1955 to 2016. While these communities are all dynamic in nature, losses due to anthropogenic causes have also occurred mainly from urban and infrastructure development.

Table 1. Mangrove, Saltmarsh, Casuarina glauca and Associated Communities extent over time

Community Type Description 1955 (ha) 1997 (ha) 2012 (ha) 2016 (ha)
Mangrove communities

1A(i)

Aegiceras corniculatum closed-scrub, open-scrub, low closed-scrub, low open-scrub

594

499

488

488

1B(i)

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica closed-forest, open-forest, woodland, low closed-forest, low open-forest, low woodland, low open-woodland

3532

4770

5125

5104

1B(i)D

Dieback impacted: Avicennia marina subsp. australasica closed-forest, open-forest, woodland, low closed-forest, low open-forest, low woodland, low open-woodland

 

 

 

0.4

1B(ii)a

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica closed-scrub, open-scrub

4480

3964

4025

3957

1B(ii)b

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland

1001

1490

1668

1686

1B(ii)c^

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland that are dying due to waterlogging

12

39

40

43

1B(iii)

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica low open-scrub, low shrubland, low open-shrubland

1081

931

801

845

1C(i)

Bruguiera gymnorhiza closed-forest, open-forest, low closed-forest, low open‑forest

9

9

9

9

1C(ii)

Bruguiera gymnorhiza - Casuarina glauca closed-forest, open-forest

3

3

3

3

1D(i)

Ceriops australis closed-scrub, open-scrub, tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland

874

830

740

737

1D(i)D

Dieback impacted: Ceriops australis closed-scrub, open-scrub, tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland

 

 

10.2

12

1D(ii)

Ceriops australis low open-scrub, low shrubland, low open-shrubland

499

385

396

376

1D(ii)D

Dieback impacted: Ceriops australis low open-scrub, low shrubland, low open-shrubland

 

 

12

4.7

1E(i)

Rhizophora stylosa closed-scrub, open-scrub, tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland

840

808

809

802

1E(i)D

Dieback impacted: Rhizophora stylosa closed-scrub, open-scrub, tall shrubland, tall open-shrubland

 

 

0.8

5.3

1F(i)

Aegiceras corniculatum - Avicennia marina subsp. australasica - Rhizophora stylosa - Bruguiera gymnorhiza closed-scrub, open-scrub, low closed-scrub, low open-scrub

119

124

126

126

1F(ii)

Avicennia marina subsp. australasica - Aegiceras corniculatum closed-scrub, open-scrub

1004

1061

1071

1068

Total Mangrove

 

14048

14912

15309

15261

Saltmarsh communities (including samphire, marine couch and claypan)

2

Claypan of marine clay. Usually devoid of vegetation

3030

1640

1472

1466

3A(i)

Sarcocornia spp. - Suaeda australis - Suaeda arbusculoides succulent shrubland to open-succulent shrubland

1299

560

394

400

4A(i)

Sporobolus virginicus closed grassland, grassland

4732

1672

1231

1184

4B(i)

Paspalum vaginatum closed grassland, grassland

4

0

0

0

4C(i)

Phragmites australis closed grassland, grassland

49

96

76

76

4D(i)

Triglochin striatum - Sporobolus virginicus closed grassland, grassland

25

19

12

12

Total saltmarsh

 

9138

3986

3186

3138

Casuarina glauca communities

5A(i)a

Casuarina glauca open-forest, woodland

438

812

890

919

5A(i)aD

Dieback impacted: Casuarina glauca open-forest, woodland

 

 

11.5

12.4

5A(i)b

Casuarina glauca open-woodland

232

49

107

102

5A(ii)a

Casuarina glauca low open-forest, low woodland

788

492

381

382

5A(ii)aD

Dieback impacted: Casuarina glauca low open-forest, low woodland

 

4.5

0.1

0.1

5A(ii)b

Casuarina glauca low open-woodland

529

139

92

70

5A(ii)bD

Dieback impacted: Casuarina glauca low open-woodland

 

 

7.3

13.8

5B(i)# Casuarina glauca - Melaleuca quinquenervia open-forest, woodland, low open-forest        
5B(ii)# Casuarina glauca - Melaleuca quinquenervia open-forest, low open-forest (dying)        
5C(i)# Casuarina glauca - Bruguiera gymnorhiza - Excoecaria agallocha low open-forest        

5C(ii)

Casuarina glauca - Avicennia marina subsp. australasica  low open-forest

5

5

5

5

5C(iii)

Casuarina glauca - Avicennia marina subsp. australasica - Aegiceras corniculatum open-forest, woodland.

7

12

25

25

6A(i)# Juncus kraussii- Baloskion pallens closed-sedgeland, sedgeland        

Total Casuarina glauca

 

1998

1515

1506

1516

Other
9# Other non-wetland vegetation communities or rural/urban areas, cleared, plantation        
Water
10A(i)b Free standing water – saline and brackish   173 225 239 228

Total

 

25357

20638

20239

20143

# Not monitored or not in the study area

Changes in extent of mangrove communities from 1955 to 2016

Mangroves in Moreton Bay Photo by Queensland Herbarium
  • 10,901 ha were stable
  • 3,150 ha either changed to another community type or were lost due to anthropogenic causes
  • 4,343 ha were gained as a result of encroachment
  • some mangrove community types have increased in area where others have decreased in extent
  • 1,213 ha overall net gain of mangroves
  • mangrove encroachment into saltmarsh and Casuarina glauca communities was 2,995 ha in the 1955 - 1997 period in comparison to 671 ha and 59 ha in the period 1997-2012 and 2012-2016 respectively.

Changes in extent of mangrove communities from 2012 to 2016

  • During the period 2012-2016 there was net loss of 48 ha of mangrove communities in Moreton Bay. That is 107 ha loss of mangrove communities (94%) losses due to anthropogenic causes including the construction of the new airport runway in Brisbane City government area 92% and to roads works 2% in Brisbane City and Gold Coast local government areas. Mangrove losses due to change to other community type such as: free standing water – saline and brackish community 4%, saltmarsh communities 3% and Casuarina glauca communities 0.1%.
  • During this period 59 ha of mangrove communities were gained by encroachment into: saltmarsh communities 59%; free standing water – saline and brackish community 22%; Casuarina glauca communities 8%; and other 11%. These mangrove communities gained by encroachment into other communities occurred in the Brisbane City 50%, Gold Coast 25%, and Moreton Bay Regional 16%.

Changes in extent of saltmarsh communities including samphire, marine couch and claypan from 1955 to 2016

  • Claypan, Photo by Queensland HerbariumMoreton Bay saltmarsh communities are part of the subtropical and temperate coastal saltmarsh ecological communities that are listed as vulnerable under the Commonwealth EPBC Act 1999
  • 2,608 ha were stable
  • 6,629 ha either changed to another community type or were lost due to anthropogenic causes
  • 560 ha were gained by dieback of other community types
  • there was a large decrease across all the saltmarsh community types
  • 6,000 ha overall net loss
  • saltmarsh community invasion by mangrove and Casuarina glauca communities was 3,200 ha in the 1955–1997 period in comparison to 1,003 ha and 41 ha in the period 1997-2012 and 2012–2016 respectively.

Changes in extent of saltmarsh communities including samphire, marine couch and claypan from 2012 to 2016

  • During the period 2012-2016 there was 47 ha loss and 14 ha gain leading to a net loss of 33 ha of Saltmarsh communities in Moreton Bay. That is 57% loss due to mangrove communities’ encroachment; 15% by encroachment of Casuarina glauca communities; 4% as a result of ponding and changing to free standing water – saline and brackish community and 2% losses due to anthropogenic causes including: airport and roads mainly in the Brisbane City 42%, Gold Coast 28% and Moreton Bay Regional 26% local government areas.
  • 14 ha of saltmarsh community gain were as a result of encroachment: mangrove communities 25%, Casuarina glauca communities 22%, free standing water – saline and brackish community 21% and other 10%.

Changes in extent of Casuarina glauca communities from 1955 to 2016

  • Casuarina glauca open-woodland, Photo by Queensland HerbariumMoreton Bay Casuarina glauca communities are listed as Endangered under the Commonwealth EPBC Act 1999 as part of the Forest of New South Wales and South East Queensland ecological communities
  • 925 ha were stable
  • 1,214 ha either changed to another community type or lost due to anthropogenic causes
  • 740 ha were gained by encroachment
  • some Casuarina glauca communities have decreased in area where others increased
  • 464 ha overall net loss
  • Casuarina glauca communities’ encroachment into mangrove and saltmarsh communities was 388 ha in the 1997 period in comparison to 92 ha and 6.8 ha in the period 1997–2012 and 2012-2016 respectively.

Changes in extent of Casuarina glauca communities from 2012 to 2016

  • During the period 2012-2016 there was 11 ha losses and 10 ha gain leading to a net loss of 1 ha, of Casuarina glauca communities in Moreton Bay. That is 44.6% loss of Casuarina glauca communities due to mangrove communities’ encroachment; encroachment of saltmarsh communities 28.5% and losses due to anthropogenic causes 27% mainly roads 45% and airport 26% in the Gold Coast 75%, Brisbane City 22% and Moreton Bay Regional 3% local government areas.
  • 10 ha gain by encroachment: saltmarsh 67%, mangrove communities 1% and other 3%.

Additional information


References

  1. ^ Accad, A, Li, J, Dowling, R & Guymer, G (2016), Mangrove and associated communities of Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia: change in extent 1955-1997-2012. [online], Queensland Herbarium, Brisbane. Available at: https://www.publications.qld.gov.au/dataset/mangrove-and-associated-communities-of-moreton-bay.

Last updated: 17 June 2016

This page should be cited as:

Department of Environment and Science, Queensland (2016) Mangroves and associated communities of Moreton Bay, WetlandInfo website, accessed 13 May 2021. Available at: https://wetlandinfo.des.qld.gov.au/wetlands/ecology/components/flora/mangroves/mangrove-moreton.html

Queensland Government
WetlandInfo   —   Department of Environment and Science