Recruitment in floodplain fish assemblages: Alternative approaches and methodological dilemmas in Australia’s northern Murray-Darling BasinDr Glenn Wilson, Robb College, University of New England, Armidale, Australia
The Murray-Darling Basin in south-eastern Australia is Australia’s main food bowl, yet has a very low level of water run-off and highly variable flow regimes in its rivers. The two halves of the basin (southern, northern) have very different conditions, requiring different data for ecological management. In the north, flows peak in the summer months, and irrigation development commenced much later than in the south. Many of the northern catchments have a large wetland system at their downstream end, and it is these ‘terminal wetland’; systems that I have been studying in order to support the delivery of appropriate environmental water regimes. My particular interest in fish!Since the early 2000s, I have been working ion two main terminal wetland systems and attempting to understand how fish recruitment in particular varies with differing flow conditions. I have used three main research approaches: (1) modeling ecological relationships with discharge variability from longer-term data, (2) analyzing ecological responses to specific flood events, and (3) examining population-level phenomena using biological (age) data.
I remain very interested in collaborating with southern African researchers on similar projects locally, whether in Botswana or other, neighbouring countries.