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  • 12 December 2017

    Biologically Important Areas (BIAs)

  • 12 December 2017

    Species Richness

    Species richness is a count of the number of different species that exist in a given region or ecological community. It is one of the simplest ways to describe community and regional diversity and is commonly used for a range of environmental assessments in conservation and management. 

    Use the interactive map below to discover which areas around Australia have high and low species richness.

  • 12 December 2017

    Ramsar Wetlands of International Importance

    Wetlands are a critical part of our natural environment. They protect our shores from wave action, reduce the impacts of floods, absorb pollutants and improve water quality. They provide habitat for animals and plants and many contain a wide diversity of life, supporting plants and animals that are found nowhere else. The Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (the Ramsar Convention) was signed in Ramsar, Iran on 2 February 1971. The Ramsar Convention aims to halt the worldwide loss of wetlands and to conserve, through wise use and management, those that remain.

  • 11 December 2017

    World Heritage Areas

    World Heritage Areas are places that are considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. Their aim is to protect natural and cultural heritage, and listed sites are places that belong to all the people of the world irrespective of their location. Sites that are nominated for World Heritage listing are only inscribed on the list after they have been carefully assessed as representing the best examples of the world's cultural and natural heritage.

  • 7 December 2017

    IMCRA Provincial Bioregions

    The Integrated Marine and Coastal Regionalisation of Australia (IMCRA v4.0) classified Australia's marine environment into ecologically relevant bioregions for regional planning. These bioregions are the basis for the development of a National Representative System of Marine Protected Areas (NRSMPA).

  • 7 December 2017

    IMCRA Mesoscale Bioregions

    The Integrated Marine and Coastal Regionalisation of Australia (IMCRA v4.0) classified Australia's marine environment into ecologically relevant bioregions for regional planning. These bioregions are the basis for the development of a National Representative System of Marine Protected Areas (NRSMPA).

  • 7 December 2017

    Key Ecological Features

    The Key Ecological Features (KEFs) are parts of the marine ecosystem that are considered to be of particular importance for either a region's biodiversity or its ecosystem function and integrity. This could relate to a species integral to a community (e.g. a predator that impacts a large biomass or number of species), an important habitat type (e.g. that supports high productivity or aggregations of nesting or breeding animals), or a unique seafloor feature that positively impacts the surrounding ecosystem (e.g.

  • 7 December 2017

    Bathomes of Australian waters

    Bathomes are large spatial regions (usually exceeding 1000 km2) characterised by the bathymetric (depth-related) distribution of biota. Bathymetry is important in determining the types of biological communities that exist in a given region. To a large extent, depth determines the amount of light that reaches the seafloor, and it also has a strong influence on the temperature. Different species have specific conditions of light and temperature that they need to survive, and this limits their distribution within the ocean.

  • 29 June 2017

    Baited video surveys collected for the Barossa Environmental Baseline Study 2015, Western Australia

    Interactive map displays stereo-video imagery collected for the Barossa Environmental Baseline Study 2015, Western Australia. Click on the map below (i.e. the blue dots) to view short videos of the fish and benthos collected at each site. Two cameras were used to obtain accurate length measurements of the fish.

  • 17 May 2017

    Probability of existence of benthic habitat classes across the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve

    Environment Australia is tasked with managing the networks of Commonwealth Marine Reserves (CMRs).

  • 15 December 2016

    Targeting the search for biodiversity with environmental variables

    Environment Australia is tasked with managing the networks of Commonwealth Marine Reserves.  This is particularly challenging in the remote and poorly known N and NW regions. Researchers from Australia's NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub's D1 project highlight five key environmental variables that may help predict biodiversity patterns across these regions.
  • 6 December 2016

    A guide to Indigenous management and governance of Australian coastal waters

    Understanding the management and governance of Australia’s vast coastline can be complex. International, Commonwealth, State and Indigenous entities all have various roles and powers to promote the health and integrity of Australia’s marine environments.

    [Quick links:  Maps to help you get started  -  Links to Indigenous Sea country Management Plans]

  • 7 November 2016

    What's on the menu for flatback turtles?

    In partnership with the Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife, Western Australian Marine Science Institution scientists on the Australian Institute of Marine Science vessel RV Solander recently spent 15 days in the field collecting data to help determine what flatback sea turtles in north-western Australia eat.
  • 13 October 2016

    What do flatback turtles in NW Australia eat?

    Flatback sea turtles (Natator depressus) are endemic to northern Australia and one of only two sea turtle species that are not distributed globally (7 species in total). Nesting occurs only on tropical Australian beaches, many in NW Australia’s remote Kimberley region.

  • 16 September 2016

    Celebrate biodiversity month – explore Australia’s north west marine region

    See what's happening during biodiversity month in Australia's unique north west marine region.
  • 22 July 2016

    Indigenous partnerships in marine science

    Bardi-Jawi Marine Rangers partner with marine scientists to research fish and coral recruitment processes in the Kimberley.
  • 16 June 2016

    How do people value the Kimberley coast?

    To-date, little attention has been paid to the social values associated with marine parks. However, understanding peoples’ needs and values is essential for effective marine park planning and management.
  • 7 March 2016

    In search of the biodiversity of remote NW Australia’s Kimberley region

    Scientists from the Australian Institute of Marine Science, CSIRO and the WA Museum continue their exploration of the tropical waters of north-west Australia’s remote Kimberley region.
  • 27 January 2016

    Measuring the colour of the ocean: what remote measures reveal about ocean health

    The ocean's colour is a reflection of its composition. Researchers, currently at sea, are measuring Kimberley seawater to see how accurately remote measurements (e.g. satellite imagery) reflect ocean composition.
  • 4 December 2015

    Turbid waters and exposed reefs: unlocking the secrets of the Kimberley coast

    In a remote marine environment, dominated by gushing tides and swirling waters, diverse and unique marine communities have remained hidden until now…


Oceanic Shoals CMRResearchers present this interactive map-based summary of the current state of knowledge about the Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserve.


Dusky whaler shark and the CMRDusky whaler sharks are widely distributed throughout the world's tropical and warm temperate waters. Use the interactive map to explore the home range of these sharks.

Petroleum leases and ofshore titlesThe interactive map shows areas within and around the Oceanic Shoals CMR covered by petroleum titles and where these have been 'released' for exploration or extraction.

Seismic surveys and the Oceanic Shoals CMRUse the interactive map to see where seismic surveys have been conducted near or within NW Australia's Oceanic Shoals Commonwealth Marine Reserves.