Flow-MER Fridays: Series 1

This webinar series is an opportunity to hear firsthand the activities taking place in the Flow-MER Program. Each video is presented by one of our team members who provide an insight into the latest findings and progress being made in their area of expertise.

Webinar 1: Spatial and temporal scales of waterbird movements
and habitat use

Presenter: Dr Heather McGinness

This research project is tracking the movements of waterbirds using satellite transmitters. The information being gathered is improving our understanding of how waterbirds move across the MDB and beyond, in response to e-water or flooding. In addition, we gain the knowledge on which habitats they are choosing, how connected our waterbird populations are, and the implications for environmental water management to prevent further population declines.

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Webinar 2: Developing an environmental water energetics response model

Presenters: Paul McInerney and James Hitchcock

As part of the Flow-MER Food Webs and Water Quality theme, we are developing a bioenergetic food web model by incorporating a range of existing and new data relating to food web dynamics in wetlands, flood channels and rivers during Commonwealth environmental watering. In this webinar, we talk about the model and how we plan to use it to demonstrate rates of carbon transfer and production in food webs under different environmental flow scenarios.

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Webinar 3: Identification, characterisation and management of refuge habitat

Presenter: Dr. Joanne Bennett

Deep waterholes in intermittent streams, perennial waterbodies, areas that receive cool groundwater inputs and shady riparian areas, are all examples of refugia – places that stay wet and cool when it’s hot and dry. They are important because they enable flora and fauna to persist during low/no flow and then recover, disperse and recolonise following the return of flow. This webinar video looks at the work being undertaken to locate refugia and identify how these habitats change over time.

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Webinar 4: Co-designing engagement with Indigenous peoples for better environmental water delivery: Cultural Values, Protocols and an Indigenous Seasonal Water Calendar

Presenters: Assoc Prof. Bradley Moggridge and Dr Emma Woodward

In this webinar, we look at how the Flow-MER project frames options and avenues for the engagement of Indigenous people across the seven Flow-MER Selected Areas, and incorporate their perspectives on Australian water management, with a particular focus on environmental water. It draws on current knowledge and practice in regard to approaches and tools (including Protocols and Seasonal Calendars) for engaging with Indigenous water knowledge, values and interests.

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Webinar 5: Fish population diversity and abundance in the MDB

Presenters: Jason Thiem, Brenton Zampatti, Charles Todd, Ivor Stuart

Using existing field data, the Flow-MER fish projects will apply cutting-edge techniques including: population modelling, acoustic fish tracking data and otolith (i.e. ear bones) microchemistry, to answer questions about where and why fish move, and how best to provide environmental water to support key life-history processes. In this video, we discuss fish population models and integrated analysis of fish movement data to illustrate river system connectivity.

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Webinar 6: Understanding trends of woody vegetation using field evapotranspiration and remote sensing

Presenters: Dr. Tanya Doody

In this project we are using field collected water use data (evapotranspiration) for River red gum and Black box to calibrate the outputs of a Basin-scale remote sensing evapotranspiration model. Evapotranspiration is a surrogate for vegetation condition, and outputs of this model allow us to observe trends in vegetation condition from 2001 to current time, for each remote sensing pixel in the Murray-Darling Basin, and plan where, when, and how long, to target environmental water to specific locations in order to maintain ecosystem function.

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