Dr Isabel Beasley and Dr Helen Penrose from James Cook University are members of Dr Mark Hamann and Professor Helene Marsh’s NERP TE Hub project team. Isabel and Helen have collaborated with Blanche D’Anastasi of Marine Wildlife Australia to develop a waterproof, pocket sized, Coastal Dolphin and Dugong Identification Guide.


The Great Barrier Reef Outlook Report 2009 is a stock-take of the Great Barrier Reef, its management and its future.

The aim of the Outlook Report is to provide information about:

  • The condition of the ecosystem of the Great Barrier Reef Region (including the ecosystem outside the Region where it affects the Region);

• Social and economic factors influencing the Great Barrier Reef ecosystem;
• Management effectiveness of the Great Barrier Reef; and
• Risk-based assessment of the long-term outlook for the Region.

The Report underpins decision-making for the long term protection of the Great Barrier Reef. It was prepared by the GBRMPA based on the best available information and was independently peer reviewed. Many people contributed to the development of the Outlook Report including:

• Australian and Queensland Government agencies
• Leading Great Barrier Reef scientists and researchers
• Industry representatives
• Advisory committees
• Members of regional communities and the public.

The publication of an Outlook Report was a key recommendation of the review of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act 1975. A report is to be prepared every five years and given to the Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities for tabling in both houses of the Australian Parliament.

The Great Barrier Reef Outlook Report 2009 is the first of these reports.


An update brochure of what's going on with the NERP Tropical Ecosystems Hub Great Barrier Reef Biodiversity projects.


A snapshot of the research progress within the Great Barrier Reef Biodiversity node for January to June 2013.


A snapshot of the research progress within the Great Barrier Reef Biodiversity node for July to December 2013.


Marine mammals (dugongs and dolphins) and turtles are facing threats from human activities such as fishing, pollution and coastal development. This project will use monitoring, genetics, satellite tracking and remote sensing techniques to determine the distribution and status of inshore dolphins in the northern Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA); estimate the size of the dugong population along the GBRWHA coast; and better understand the role of green turtles and dugongs in coastal ecosystems. The project will also work with Traditional Owners to improve conservation of these species of conservation concern and high cultural value.


Marine Ecology Progress Series


Shimada, T., Jones, R., Limpus, C., Hamann, M. (2012) Improving data retention and home range estimates by data-driven screening. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 457, 171-180 [doi:10.3354/meps09747].

Beasley, I., Golding, G. and Girringun Rangers. (2013) Looking for Palangal (dolphins) and Balangal (dugongs) in Girringun Sea Country.

© James Cook University


Sobtzick, S., Hagihara, R., Grech, A., Marsh, H. (2012) Aerial survey of the urban coast of Queensland to evaluate the response of the dugong population to the widespread effects of the extreme weather events of the summer of 2010-11. School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Townsville, Australia.

© James Cook University


Sobtzick, S., Penrose, H., Hagihara, R., Grech, A. Cleguer, C., Marsh, H. (2014) An assessment of the distribution and abundance of dugongs in the Northern Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait.

© James Cook University


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