Abstract

In order to design a representative network of high seas marine protected areas (MPAs), an acceptable scheme is required to classify the benthic bioregions of the oceans. Given the lack of sufficient biological information to accomplish this task, we used a multivariate statistical method with 6 biophysical variables (depth, seabed slope, sediment thickness, primary production, bottom water dissolved oxygen and bottom temperature) to objectively classify the ocean floor into 11 different categories, comprised of 53,713 separate polygons, that we have termed "seascapes". Validation of the seascape classification was carried out by comparing the seascapes with an existing map of seafloor geomorphology, and by GIS analysis of the number of separate polygons and perimeter/area ratio. We conclude that seascapes, derived using a multivariate statistical approach, are biophysically meaningful subdivisions of the ocean floor and can be expected to contain different biological associations, in as much as different geomorphological units do the same. Our study illustrates how the identification of potential sites for high seas marine protected areas can be accomplished by GIS analysis of seafloor geomorphic and seascape classification maps. Using this approach, maps of seascape and geomorphic heterogeneity were generated in which heterogeneity hot-spots identify themselves as MPA candidates. The use of computer-aided mapping tools removes subjectivity in the MPA design process and provides greater confidence to stakeholders that an unbiased result has been achieved.
Google map showing geographic bounding box with values North bound -8.0 East bound 170.0 West bound 110.0 South bound -60.0
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For information on acquiring this product,
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Product Type/Sub Type

dataset - External Publication - Scientific Journal Paper

Constraints

license
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence

IP Owner

Commonwealth of Australia (Geoscience Australia)

Author(s)

Date (publication)

2009

Product Type

dataset

Topic Category

geoscientificInformation

Keywords

External Publication
Scientific Journal Paper
marine
marine park
habitat
geomorphology
bathymetry
Earth Sciences

Resource Language

English

Resource Character Set

utf8

Resource Security Classification

unclassified

Geographic Extent

North bound
-8.0
East bound
170.0
West bound
110.0
South bound
-60.0

Lineage

Unknown

Digital Transfer Options

onLine

Distributor

Role
distributor
Organisation Name
Geoscience Australia
City
Canberra
Administrative Area
ACT
Postal Code
2601
Country
Australia
Email Address

Metadata File Identifier

a05f7892-d3fb-7506-e044-00144fdd4fa6

Metadata Standard Name

ANZLIC Metadata Profile: An Australian/New Zealand Profile of AS/NZS ISO 19115:2005, Geographic information - Metadata

Metadata Standard Version

1.1

Metadata Date Stamp

2008-06-13

METADATA SECURITY CLASSIFICATION

unclassified

Metadata Contact

Role
pointOfContact
Organisation Name
Geoscience Australia
City
Canberra
Administrative Area
ACT
Postal Code
2601
Country
Australia
Email Address
Related Links
For information on acquiring this product,
please contact the Geoscience Australia Sales Centre via:

fax:
+61 2 6249 9960; or
phone:
1800 800 173 (within Australia);
 
+61 2 6249 9966 (outside Australia).

Please note that support hours are 9 am to 5 pm weekdays