As part of the Flow-MER Biodiversity Basin Theme, we are learning and understanding more about aquatic refugia habitats, their characteristics, and the species they support.
Refugia are 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. Examples of refugia are deep waterholes in intermittent streams, perennial waterbodies, areas that receive cool groundwater inputs and shady riparian areas.
This webinar video looks at the work being undertaken to locate refugia and identify how refuge habitats change over time, and explores two questions:
- What are the characteristics that define, identify and describe refugia habitats across the Basin?
- What are patterns of refuge use and habitat suitability for water dependent species with a focus on fish, turtles, frogs and bats?
Dr. Joanne Bennett
Joanne is a community ecologist, with a primary research goal of discovering the general principles that are essential to effectively manage biodiversity under global changes, particularly land-use and climate change. She is an experienced water resource manager, with a PhD on investigating how the spatio-temporal distribution of vegetation and avian assemblages were interactively and additively affected by climate drying and land-use change. She has worked on projects investigating how species physiology effects their vulnerability to climate change across aquatic and terrestrial realms and how anthropogenic change is affecting plant reproduction at global scales. Her experience includes a wide range of taxa including mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, birds and vegetation in a wide of ecosystems.