What do we know about the Glomar Shoal Key Ecological Feature?

Key ecological features (KEF) are elements of the Commonwealth marine area that are considered to be of regional importance for the biodiversity or ecosystem function and integrity of that region. Nationally, there are 56 KEF’s identified in marine bioregional plans. The Glomar Shoals KEF is located within the North-west Marine Region and is considered representative of shallow water terrace habitats of the outer shelf that attract aggregations of marine life.

Researchers within the National Environmental Science Programme's Marine Biodiversity Hub developed a preliminary qualitative model for the Glomar Shoals KEF, based on new knowledge of the benthic and pelagic environments. 

The diagram above shows the generalised relationships and interactions between components of the Glomar Shoals ecosystem and potential threats to those components. For example, climate change will lead to increased wave and current energy (+ve link) that may damage foliose and branching hard corals (-ve link).

 

Learn more about the model and how to interpret it from the FACT SHEET.