Decision tree knowledge base

There are many differing and largely independent practices, tools (software and hardware), processes and techniques that have been in use to date by the marine community for habitat monitoring and assessment. The Coastal CRC's Coastal Water Habitat Mapping project has brought together a number of different organisations and individuals to provide a single group of interested parties to work on gaining a rapid understanding of the tools and techniques able to be used in conducting habitat mapping programs.

The CB sub-project provides research and information so as to be able to:

  • Describe biological function and classification of habitats from remote information
  • Develop rapid classification methods with coverage rates and resolution tuned to spatial and temporal scales of key biological indicators
  • Develop a hierarchical classification system of shallow water benthic communities
  • Link meaningful biological community descriptions with the technical output from acoustic, video and remote sensing tools.

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

The CA sub-project provides research in to:

  • quantifying the effectiveness of a range of acoustic and video tools for habitat assessment and monitoring of coastal and estuarine waters
  • improve algorithms for the characterisation of epibenthos and sediment from acoustic signals and incorporate backscatter characterisation algorithms into commercial development
  • develop protocols for data standards and calibration
  • carry out a targeted suite of benthic surveys around the Australian coast.

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

The CG sub-project provides information to assess the geomorphology and sediments in order to better identify the distributions of distinctive biological communities.

  • Develop a standardised geomorphological classification system for benthic features that can be applied across the various study regions and nationally
  • Improve the accessibility to the new acoustic datasets and image products by housing them in a national database linked with OzEstuaries.

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

As part of the toolkit developement, it seeks to address the void in Australia of a knowledge base, along with a suitable decision-trees that can be used as a guidance tool through which the planning and execution of such programs may be streamlined. The Toolkit forms the knowledge database largely comprised of material identified during review of existing practices and techniques in use by the marine community to date, as well as by integrating specific outputs of this and other sub-projects of the Coastal Water Habitat Mapping project and the CRC more generally.

The CT sub-project has two purposes, firstly it is aimed at providing the commercialisation process such as undertaking the case study projects.

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

and the second aim of the CT sub-project is to provide this Toolkit.

click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation click on image for slide presentation

Additionally, the projects undertaken have given the practitioners of such programs experience and software tools which allow efficient data collection and interpretation in order to rapidly collect and process quality data. This Toolkit addresses research and development of tools and techniques for sonar and underwater videography data collection and the fusion and presentation of such data. Although there are many survey techniques able to be used, the benthic habitat mapping methodology that is emerging to prominence more and more is the use of hydro acoustic remote sensing by means of multibeam / swathe bathymetric sonars in conjunction with towed underwater video techniques. In the last three years, due to the new and powerful processing techniques becoming available, these techniques are proving to be extremely efficient as well as cost effective in undertaking very high resolution mapping surveys of the habitats and marine life on a fine scale over both broad and confined areas of the seabed. This remote sensing technology, along with fish survey techniques developed by the Coastal CRC's research, is the primary outcome in the development of innovative technology for undertaking Benthic habitat mapping surveys.

Back to top of page