Seafloor substrate in the Tasman Fracture Marine Park

Seafloor substrate refers to the surface of the seafloor. At its broadest level this can be described as either hard or soft. While these terms might sound simple, they can provide useful information about the potential biota that exist in a given area. For example many organisms such as kelps, corals and sponges can only exist where there is a hard substrate for them to attach and grow, while soft sediments often host diverse communities of polychaetes, crustaceans, echinoderms and molluscs. Information on substrate hardness is relatively easy to obtain from multibeam acoustic surveys, and due to the large extent, depth and remote locations of many or our Australian Marine Parks this is often the only information we have about the seafloor in some regions. In addition to other data such as bathymetric or oceanographic data, this information can be used to help design future surveys and target potential biodiversity hotspots or regions of specific interest.

How to use the map

Click this button (third from top on the left hand side of the map) to see the map metadata.