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biota

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    This data set consists of a scored time-series of Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) images from the Bicheno region on the east coast of Tasmania. Surveys were conducted between 2011 and 2016 within the Governor Island Marine Reserve and nearby sites outside the reserve. Governor Island was surveyed in 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2016. The outside sites of Trap Reef, Cape Lodi and Butlers Point were surveyed in 2011, 2013 and 2016. Imagery across all surveys was scored for the presence of Centrostephanus rodgersii urchin barrens across rocky reef at each site. Prior to analysis the data was subsetted to every fifth image to avoid overlapping images. The data set also contains depth information for each image and a measure of rugosity (Vector Rugosity Measure) computed in ArcGIS software from a one metre resolution bathymetric map covering the survey sites. Analysis was conducted to examine the trend in the presence of barrens through time and to compare the occurrence of barrens inside the Governor Island Marine Reserve with sites outside the reserve. A spatio-temporal model incorporating both spatial and temporal correlation in the time-series of data was used. This data set contains the scored data used in the analysis. Further details of the methods used and results are contained in the following article. Please cite any use of the data or code by citing this article: Perkins NR, Hosack GR, Foster SD, Monk J, Barrett NS (2020) Monitoring the resilience of a no-take marine reserve to a range extending species using benthic imagery. PLOS ONE 15(8): e0237257. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0237257

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    The spatial extent of C. rodgersii "barrens" was estimated by surveying rocky reef habitat with a towed underwater video system. Sampling took place at 13 regions along the east coast of Tasmania, each comprising 3 subsites, this dataset refers to the Maria Island region, and its 3 subsites: Beaching, Bunker and Mistaken Cape.

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    A project investigating the restoration of string kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) habitat on Tasmania's east and south coasts. Macroalgae, fish and invertebrate counts were collected as part of the project using the Edgar Barrett transect technique in the Derwent Estuary and in the Mercury Passage on the South East Tasmania. Other fish, invertebrate and macroalgal data was also collected.

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    The data is the quantitative abundance of megafaunal invertebrates derived from underwater visual census methods involving transect counts at rocky reef sites around Tasmania. This data forms part of a larger dataset that also surveyed fish abundance and algal cover for the area. The aggregated dataset allows examination of changes in Tasmanian shallow reef floral and faunal communities over a decadal scale - initial surveys were conducted in 1992-1995, and again at the same sites in 2006-2007. There are plans for ongoing surveys. An additional component was added in the latter study - a boat ramp study looking at the proximity of boat ramps and their effects of fishing. We analysed underwater visual census data on fishes and macroinvertebrates (abalone and rock lobsters) at 133 shallow rocky reef sites around Tasmania that ranged from 0.6 - 131 km from the nearest boat ramp. These sites were not all the same as those used for the comparison of 1994 and 2006 reef communities. The subset of 133 sites examined in this component consisted of only those sites that were characterized by the two major algal (kelp) types (laminarian or fucoid dominated). Sites with atypical algal assemblages were omitted from the 196 sites surveyed in 2006. This study aimed to examine reef community data for changes at the community level, changes in species richness and introduced species populations, and changes that may have resulted from ocean warming and fishing. The methods are described in detail in Edgar and Barrett (1997). Primarily the data are derived from transects at 5 m depth and/or 10 m depth at each site surveyed. The underwater visual census (UVC) methodology used to survey rocky reef communities was designed to maximise detection of (i) changes in population numbers and size-structure (ii) cascading ecosystem effects associated with disturbances such as fishing, (iii) long term change and variability in reef assemblages.

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    Reef Life Survey is a program that trains and assists a network of skilled and committed recreational divers to cost-effectively assess the state of the inshore marine environment at the continental scale. The program uses standardised underwater visual census methods employed by SCUBA divers to survey fish and invertebrate species and to record macroalgal and coral cover using photo quadrats - this record refers to the website for this program. By standardising techniques and establishing a monitoring system on a nation-wide scale, the program addresses many of the current problems associated with managing the marine environment, including the paucity, patchiness and variable quality of data on the distribution of and trends to marine biodiversity. A central database is managed for the storage, analysis and dissemination of data collected nationally, with a publicly-accessible web-based portal. The website allows information collected on Australia's marine environment to be accessed in a meaningful form by policy-makers and the general public, including recreational groups, scientists and industry. It also has information and resources for particpating divers and those wishing to become involved. The dataset generated by recreational divers will provide a national framework for monitoring the state of the inshore environment and the identification of those threats and locations of greatest conservation concern. This record points to the online resource for Reef Life Survey: http://www.reeflifesurvey.com/

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    This study compared the individual and combined effects of two introduced marine species in SE Tasmania - the northern Pacific seastar (Asterias amurensis) and the European green crab (Carcinus maenas) - and investigated their impact on native invertebrate fauna using in situ caging experiments. Both species predate upon bivalves, and this study assessed the biological interaction between these introduced species and native bivalve species - allowing the impact of multiple exotic predator species to be investigated in one system. The cage experiments have 5 treatment groups, including all combinations of presence (single animal) and absence of seastars and crabs, and a control with neither. Predator activity (number and type of bivalves consumed) was recorded after 8 weeks by suction-sampling each cage and counting and identifying fauna.

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    The main aim of this research program was to determine the potential for reducing the density of urchins to encourage the return of seaweeds and an improvement in urchin roe quality and quantity from remaining urchins. Tasmanian Sea Urchin Developments used two widely-separated sub-tidal experimental lease areas. One of these areas was at Meredith Point, on the east coast, and the other at Hope Island, on the south coast. Both sites had been subject to some overgrazing by urchins. At Meredith Point, the study area was divided into plots containing urchins at three densities: artificially enhanced, continually harvested and control (undisturbed). At Hope Island, controlled clearings of urchins and limpets from barrens areas were conducted. Recovery of vegetation was monitored as well as urchin roe quality and quantity. The data represented by this record was collected at Meredith Point.

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    The spatial extent of C. rodgersii "barrens" was estimated by surveying rocky reef habitat with a towed underwater video system. Sampling took place at 13 regions along the east coast of Tasmania, each comprising 3 subsites, this dataset refers to the Bicheno region, and its 3 subsites: Denison, Governor Island and Lodi.

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    Mesozooplankton community composition and structure were examined throughout the D’Entrecasteaux Channel, Huon Estuary and North West Bay, Tasmania, from November 2004 to October 2005, the data represented by this record was collected on the 06/09/2005. The composition of the mesozooplankton community was typical of inshore, temperate marine habitats, with seasonally higher abundance in summer and autumn and lower numbers in winter and spring. Copepods were the largest contributors to total abundance across all seasons and stations, while cladocerans and appendicularians were proportionally abundant in spring and summer. The faecal pellets of these three main groups, along with those of krill and amphipods, also contributed significantly to material recovered from sediment traps. Meroplanktonic larvae of benthic animals showed short-term peaks in abundance and were often absent from the water column for long periods. Spatially, North West Bay and the Channel had a higher representation of typically marine species, including Calanus australis and Labidocera cervi, while truly estuarine species, such as the copepod Gladioferens pectinatus, were more important in the Huon Estuary.

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    A survey of the east Tasmanian coastline from Musselroe Bay to South East Cape revealed a total of 10 km2 of Macrocystis pyrifera (Linnaeus) C. Agardh 1820 kelp forest. Average harvestable quantities based on Alginates (Australia) Company records (1965-72) show that cropping can expect to yield 5 ton/acre or 1.23 kg/m2. This realizes a total of 12,300 tonne available on the East Coast of Tasmania in 1986. Review of past records show fluctuations in total amounts harvested, due possibly to factors such as high oceanic water temperatures with subsequent low nutrient concentrations and storm damage. The survey was conducted from a light aeroplane. Areas of Macrocystis pyrifera beds were marked on 1:100,000 topographical land tenure maps using landmarks as references. Digitising of bed outlines on maps was done using Mapinfo. Weight of Macrocystis per unit area is also estimated from quadrats harvested at a number of sites along the coast.