Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Are mangroves in Victoria (south-eastern Australia) already responding to climate change?

Paul I. Boon
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

Institute for Sustainability and Innovation, Victoria University, Vic. 8001, Australia. Email: paul.boon@vu.edu.au

Marine and Freshwater Research 68(12) 2366-2374 https://doi.org/10.1071/MF17015
Submitted: 25 January 2017  Accepted: 24 May 2017   Published: 28 July 2017

Abstract

The distribution and productivity of mangroves is directly affected by a wide range of climatic drivers, including temperature, frost, rainfall, evaporation and storm activity, which, in turn, influence a suite of secondary drivers, including changes in freshwater run-off and sediment supply, groundwater dynamics and inter-species competitiveness. The highest-latitude expression of mangroves globally is at Millers Landing, Victoria (38°45′S), and because the vigour and productivity of mangroves across much of Victoria is thought to be limited by low winter temperatures and the incidence and severity of frosts, it is likely that mangroves will be among the first plant communities to be affected by climate change in coastal south-eastern Australia. An increase in plant vigour is likely, but there are almost no historical data with which to compare current rates of primary production. An extension of mangroves to higher latitudes on the mainland is impossible because of the geomorphology of the land that lies further to the south. Small-scale changes in distribution, including the progressive encroachment of mangroves into coastal saltmarsh, are likely to be among the clearest indications of the response of mangroves to a warming climate. Increased effort into tracking changes in mangrove vigour, productivity and distribution is clearly warranted.


References

Adam, P. (2002). Saltmarshes in a time of change. Environmental Conservation 29, 39–61.
Saltmarshes in a time of change.CrossRef |

Ashton, D. H. (1971). Mangroves in Victoria – point of view. Victoria’s Resources 13, 27–30.

Attiwill, P. M., and Clough, B. F. (1974). ‘The Role of Mangrove and Seagrass Communities in Nutrient Cycling in Westernport Bay.’ (Ministry for Conservation: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Ball, M. C. (1988). Salinity tolerance in the mangroves Aegiceras corniculatum and Avicennia marina. I. Water use in relation to growth, carbon partitioning and salt balance. Australian Journal of Plant Physiology 15, 447–464.
Salinity tolerance in the mangroves Aegiceras corniculatum and Avicennia marina. I. Water use in relation to growth, carbon partitioning and salt balance.CrossRef |

Barson, M. M., and Calder, D. M. (1981). The vegetation of the Victorian coast. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 92, 55–65.

Bird, E. C. F. (1980). Mangroves and coastal morphology. Victorian Naturalist 97, 48–58.

Bird, E. C. F. (1993). ‘The Coast of Victoria. The Shaping of Scenery.’ (Melbourne University Press: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Bird, E. C. F., and Lennon, J. (1989). ‘Making an Entrance: the Story of the Artificial Entrance to the Gippsland Lakes.’ (Geostudies Australia: Bairnsdale, Vic., Australia.)

Bonan, G. B. (2002). ‘Ecological Climatology. Concepts and Applications.’ (Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK.)

Boon, P. I. (2012). Coastal wetlands of temperate eastern Australia: will Cinderella ever go to the ball? Marine and Freshwater Research 63, 845–855.
Coastal wetlands of temperate eastern Australia: will Cinderella ever go to the ball?CrossRef |

Boon, P. I., Raulings, E., Roache, M., and Morris, K. (2008). Vegetation changes over a four-decade period in Dowd Morass, a brackish-water wetland of the Gippsland Lakes, south-eastern Australia. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 120, 403–418.

Boon, P. I., Allen, T., Brook, J., Carr, G., Frood, D., Hoye, J., Harty, C., McMahon, A., Mathews, S., Rosengren, S., Sinclair, S., White, M., and Yugovic, J. (2011). ‘Mangroves and Coastal Saltmarsh of Victoria: Distribution, Condition, Threats and Management.’ (Department of Sustainability and Environment, Bendigo, Vic., Australia.) Available at http://www.ozcoasts.gov.au/geom_geol/vic/SaltmarshPrelimsSummaryFinalLowRes.pdf [Verified 20 June 2017].

Boon, P. I., Allen, T., Carr, G., Frood, D., Harty, C., McMahon, A., Mathews, S., Rosengren, N., Sinclair, S., White, M., and Yugovic, J. (2015). Coastal wetlands of Victoria, south-eastern Australia: providing the inventory and condition information needed for their effective management and conservation. Aquatic Conservation 25, 454–479.
Coastal wetlands of Victoria, south-eastern Australia: providing the inventory and condition information needed for their effective management and conservation.CrossRef |

Boon, P. I., Cook, P., and Woodland, R. (2016). The challenges posed by chronic environmental change in the Gippsland Lakes Ramsar site. Marine and Freshwater Research 67, 721–737.
The challenges posed by chronic environmental change in the Gippsland Lakes Ramsar site.CrossRef |

Bureau of Meteorology (2017). Summary statistics for Melbourne regional office. Available at http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/averages/tables/cw_086071.shtml [Verified 27 April 2017].

Cavanaugh, K. C., Kellner, J. R., Forde, A. J., Gruner, D. S., Parker, J. D., Rodriguez, W., and Feller, I. C. (2014). Poleward expansion of mangroves is a threshold response to decreased frequency of extreme cold events. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 111, 723–727.
Poleward expansion of mangroves is a threshold response to decreased frequency of extreme cold events.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC2cXotFeqsw%3D%3D&md5=70973be26f286b706c612a37698cbe60CAS |

Cavanaugh, K. C., Parker, J. D., Cook-Patton, S. C., Feller, I. C., Williams, A. P., and Kellner, J. R. (2015). Integrating physiological threshold experiments with climate modeling to project mangroves species’ range expansion. Global Change Biology 21, 1928–1938.
Integrating physiological threshold experiments with climate modeling to project mangroves species’ range expansion.CrossRef |

Clarke, L. D., and Hannon, N. J. (1969). The mangrove swamp and saltmarsh communities of the Sydney district. II. The holocoenotic complex with particular reference to physiography. Journal of Ecology 57, 213–234.
The mangrove swamp and saltmarsh communities of the Sydney district. II. The holocoenotic complex with particular reference to physiography.CrossRef |

Clarke, L. D., and Hannon, N. J. (1970). The mangrove swamp and salt marsh communities of the Sydney district. III. Plant growth in relation to salinity and waterlogging. Journal of Ecology 58, 351–369.
The mangrove swamp and salt marsh communities of the Sydney district. III. Plant growth in relation to salinity and waterlogging.CrossRef |

Clarke, P. J., and Myerscough, P. J. (1993). The intertidal distribution of the grey mangrove (Avicennia marina) in southeastern Australia: the effects of physical conditions, interspecific competition, and predation on propagule establishment and survival. Australian Journal of Ecology 18, 307–315.
The intertidal distribution of the grey mangrove (Avicennia marina) in southeastern Australia: the effects of physical conditions, interspecific competition, and predation on propagule establishment and survival.CrossRef |

Clough, B. F., and Attiwill, P. M. (1982). Primary productivity of mangroves. In ‘Mangrove Ecosystems in Australia. Structure, Function and Management’. (Ed. B. F. Clough.) pp. 213–222. (Australian Institute of Marine Science: Townsville, Qld; and Australian National University: Canberra, ACT, Australia.)

CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology (2015a). ‘Climate Change in Australia. Projections for Australia’s NRM Regions. Cluster Report – Southern Slopes.’ (CSIRO: Canberra, ACT, Australia.)

CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology (2015b). ‘Climate Change in Australia. Projections for Australia’s NRM Regions. Southern Slopes.’ (CSIRO: Canberra, ACT, Australia.)

Department of Sustainability and Environment (2012). ‘A Field Guide to Victorian Wetland Ecological Vegetation Classes for the Index of Wetland Condition’, 2nd edn. (DSE: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Duke, N. C. (1990). Phenological trends with latitude in the mangrove tree Avicenna marina. Journal of Ecology 78, 113–133.
Phenological trends with latitude in the mangrove tree Avicenna marina.CrossRef |

Duke, N. (2006). ‘Australia’s Mangroves. The Authoritative Guide to Australia’s Mangrove Plants.’ (University of Queensland Press: Brisbane, Qld, Australia.)

Finlayson, C. M., Davis, J. A., Gell, P. A., Kingsford, R. T., and Parton, K. A. (2013). The status of wetlands and the predicted effects of global climate change: the situation in Australia. Aquatic Sciences 75, 73–93.
The status of wetlands and the predicted effects of global climate change: the situation in Australia.CrossRef |

Gabler, C. A., Osland, M. J., Grace, J. B., Stagg, C. L., Day, R. H., Hartley, S. B., Enwright, N. M., From, A. S., McCoy, M. L., and McLeod, J. L. (2017). Macroclimatic change expected to transform coastal wetland ecosystems this century. Nature Climate Change 7, 142–147.
Macroclimatic change expected to transform coastal wetland ecosystems this century.CrossRef |

Gippsland Ports (2014). History of dredging the entrance to the Gippsland Lakes. Available at www.gippslandports.vic.gov.au/pdfs/info/gippslandport_11.pdf [Verified 27 April 2017].

Holmes, G., Hall, N. E., Gendall, A. R., Boon, P. I., and James, E. (2016). Using transcriptomics to identify differential gene expression in response to salinity among Australian Phragmites australis clones. Frontiers in Plant Science 7, 432.
Using transcriptomics to identify differential gene expression in response to salinity among Australian Phragmites australis clones.CrossRef |

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2014). Carbon dioxide: projected emissions and concentrations. Available at http://www.ipcc-data.org/observ/ddc_co2.html [Verified 15 December 2016].

Krauss, K. W., McKee, K. L., Lovelock, C. E., Cahoon, D. R., Saintilan, N., Reef, R., and Chen, L. (2014). How mangrove forest adjust to rising sea levels. New Phytologist 202, 19–34.
How mangrove forest adjust to rising sea levels.CrossRef |

Laegdsgaard, P. (2006). Ecology, disturbance and restoration of coastal saltmarsh in Australia: a review. Wetlands Ecology and Management 14, 379–399.
Ecology, disturbance and restoration of coastal saltmarsh in Australia: a review.CrossRef |

Lear, R., and Turner, T. (1977). ‘Mangroves of Australia.’ (University of Queensland Press: Brisbane, Qld, Australia.)

Lough, G. M., and Hobday, A. J. (2011). Observed climate change in Australian marine and freshwater environments. Marine and Freshwater Research 62, 984–999.
Observed climate change in Australian marine and freshwater environments.CrossRef |

Lovelock, C. E., Krauss, K. W., Osland, M. J., Reef, R., and Ball, M. C. (2016). The physiology of mangrove trees with changing climate. In ‘Tropical Tree Physiology: Adaptations and Responses in a Changing Climate’. (Eds G. Goldstein and L. S. Santiago.) pp. 149–179. (Springer: Dordrecht, Netherlands.)

Macnae, W. (1966). Mangroves in eastern and southern Australia. Australian Journal of Botany 14, 67–104.
Mangroves in eastern and southern Australia.CrossRef |

Macnae, W. (1968). A general account of the flora of mangrove swamps and forests in the Indo–West-Pacific region. Advances in Marine Biology 6, 73–270.
A general account of the flora of mangrove swamps and forests in the Indo–West-Pacific region.CrossRef |

McKee, K., Rogers, K., and Saintilan, N. (2012). Response of salt marsh and mangroves wetlands to change sin atmospheric CO2, climate, and sea level. In ‘Global Change and the Function and Distribution of Wetlands’. (Ed. B. A. Middleton.) pp. 63–96. (Springer: Berlin, Germany.)

McLoughlin, L. (1987). Mangroves and grass swamps: changes in shoreline vegetation of the middle Lane Cove River, Sydney, 1780’s–1880’s. Wetlands Australia 7, 13–24.

Mitchell, M. L., and Adam, P. (1989a). The decline of saltmarsh in Botany Bay. Wetlands Australia 8, 55–60.

Mitchell, M. L., and Adam, P. (1989b). The relationship between mangrove and saltmarsh communities in the Sydney region. Wetlands Australia 8, 37–46.

Morrisey, D. J., Swales, A., Dittmann, S., Morrison, M. A., Lovelock, C. E., and Beard, C. M. (2010). The ecology and management of temperate mangroves. Oceanography and Marine Biology – an Annual Review 48, 43–160.
The ecology and management of temperate mangroves.CrossRef |

Oliver, J. (1982). The geographic and environmental aspects of mangrove communities: climate. In ‘Mangrove Ecosystems in Australia. Structure, Function and Management’. (Ed. B. F. Clough.) pp. 19–30. (Australian Institute of Marine Science: Townsville, Qld, Australia; and Australian National University: Canberra, ACT, Australia.)

Osland, M. J., Enwright, N. M., Day, R. H., and Doyle, T. W. (2013). Winter climate change and coastal wetland foundation species: salt marshes vs. mangrove forests in the southeast United States. Global Change Biology 19, 1482–1494.
Winter climate change and coastal wetland foundation species: salt marshes vs. mangrove forests in the southeast United States.CrossRef |

Osland, M. J., Enwright, N. M., and Stagg, C. L. (2014). Freshwater availability and coastal wetland foundation species: ecological transitions along a rainfall gradient. Ecology 95, 2789–2802.
Freshwater availability and coastal wetland foundation species: ecological transitions along a rainfall gradient.CrossRef |

Osland, M. J., Enwright, N. M., Day, R. H., Gabler, C. A., Staggi, C. L., and Grace, J. B. (2016). Beyond just sea-level rise: considering macroclimatic drivers within coastal wetland vulnerability assessments to climate change. Global Change Biology 22, 1–11.
Beyond just sea-level rise: considering macroclimatic drivers within coastal wetland vulnerability assessments to climate change.CrossRef |

Osland, M. J., Day, R. H., Hall, C. T., Brumfield, M. D., Dugas, J. L., and Jones, W. R. (2017a). Mangrove expansion and contraction at a poleward range limit: climate extremes and land–ocean temperature gradients. Ecology 98, 125–137.
Mangrove expansion and contraction at a poleward range limit: climate extremes and land–ocean temperature gradients.CrossRef |

Osland, M. J., Feher, L. C., Griffith, K. T., Cavanaugh, K. C., Enwright, N. M., Day, R. H., Stagg, C. L., Krauss, K. W., Howard, R. J., Grace, J. B., and Rogers, K. (2017b). Climatic controls on the global distribution, abundance and species richness of mangrove forests. Ecological Monographs 87, 341–359.
Climatic controls on the global distribution, abundance and species richness of mangrove forests.CrossRef |

Pratolongo, P. D., Kirby, J. R., Plater, A., and Brinson, M. M. (2009). Temperate coastal wetlands: morphology, sediment processes, and plant communities. In ‘Coastal Wetlands. An Integrated Ecosystem Approach’. (Eds G. M. E. Perillo, E. Wolanski, D. R. Cahoon, and M. M. Brinson.) pp. 89–118. (Elsevier: Amsterdam, Netherlands.)

Reef, R., Felkler, I. C., and Lovelock, C. E. (2010). Nutrition of mangroves. Tree Physiology 30, 1148–1160.
Nutrition of mangroves.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC3cXhtFKhtLfP&md5=43ef74c6aafb9c700738944e17204670CAS |

Rogers, K., Saintilan, N., and Hiejnis, H. (2005). Mangrove encroachment of salt marsh in Western Port Bay, Victoria: the role of sedimentation, subsidence, and sea level rise. Estuaries 28, 551–559.
Mangrove encroachment of salt marsh in Western Port Bay, Victoria: the role of sedimentation, subsidence, and sea level rise.CrossRef |

Rogers, K., Wilton, K. M., and Saintilan, N. (2006). Vegetation change and surface elevation dynamics in estuarine wetlands of southeastern Australia. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 66, 559–569.
Vegetation change and surface elevation dynamics in estuarine wetlands of southeastern Australia.CrossRef |

Rogers, K., Saintilan, N., Howe, A. J., and Rodríguez, J. F. (2013). Sedimentation, elevation and marsh evolution in a southeastern Australian estuary during changing climatic conditions. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 133, 172–181.
Sedimentation, elevation and marsh evolution in a southeastern Australian estuary during changing climatic conditions.CrossRef |

Rogers, K., Saintilan, N., and Woodroffe, C. D. (2014). Surface elevation change and vegetation distribution dynamics in a subtropical coastal wetland: implications for coastal wetland response to climate change. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 149, 46–56.
Surface elevation change and vegetation distribution dynamics in a subtropical coastal wetland: implications for coastal wetland response to climate change.CrossRef |

Rogers, K., Boon, P. I., Branigan, S., Duke, N. C., Field, C. D., Fitzsimons, J. A., Kirkman, H., MacKenzie, J. R., and Saintilan, N. (2016). The state of legislation and policy protecting Australia’s mangrove and salt marsh and their ecosystem services. Marine Policy 72, 139–155.
The state of legislation and policy protecting Australia’s mangrove and salt marsh and their ecosystem services.CrossRef |

Ross, R. (2000). ‘Mangroves and Salt Marshes in Westernport Bay, Victoria.’ (Arthur Rylah Institute: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Saintilan, N., and Hashimoto, T. R. (1999). Mangrove–saltmarsh dynamics on a bay-head delta in the Hawkesbury River estuary, New South Wales, Australia. Hydrobiologia 413, 95–102.
Mangrove–saltmarsh dynamics on a bay-head delta in the Hawkesbury River estuary, New South Wales, Australia.CrossRef |

Saintilan, N., and Rogers, K. (2013). The significance and vulnerability of Australian saltmarshes: implications for management in a changing climate. Marine and Freshwater Research 64, 66–79.
The significance and vulnerability of Australian saltmarshes: implications for management in a changing climate.CrossRef |

Saintilan, N., and Rogers, K. (2015). Woody plant encroachment of grasslands: a comparison of terrestrial and wetland settings. New Phytologist 205, 1062–1070.
Woody plant encroachment of grasslands: a comparison of terrestrial and wetland settings.CrossRef |

Saintilan, N., and Williams, R. J. (1999). Mangrove transgression into saltmarsh environments in south-east Australia. Global Ecology and Biogeography 8, 117–124.
Mangrove transgression into saltmarsh environments in south-east Australia.CrossRef |

Saintilan, N., and Williams, R. J. (2000). The decline of saltmarsh in southeast Australia: results of recent surveys. Wetlands Australia 18, 49–59.

Saintilan, N., and Wilton, K. (2001). Changes in the distribution of mangroves and saltmarshes in Jervis May, Australia. Wetlands Ecology and Management 9, 409–420.
Changes in the distribution of mangroves and saltmarshes in Jervis May, Australia.CrossRef |

Saintilan, N., Rogers, K., and McKee, K. (2009). Salt marsh-mangrove interactions in Australasia and the Americas. In ‘Coastal Wetlands. An Integrated Ecosystem Approach’. (Eds G. M. E. Perillo, E. Wolanski, D. R. Cahoon, and M. M. Brinson.) pp. 855–883. (Elsevier: Amsterdam, Netherlands.)

Saintilan, N., Wilson, N. C., Rogers, K., Rajkaran, A., and Krauss, K. W. (2014). Mangrove expansion and salt marsh decline at mangrove poleward limits. Global Change Biology 20, 147–157.
Mangrove expansion and salt marsh decline at mangrove poleward limits.CrossRef |

Santini, N. S., Reef, R., Lockington, D. A., and Lovelock, C. E. (2015). The use of fresh and saline water sources by the mangrove Avicennia marina. Hydrobiologia 745, 59–68.
The use of fresh and saline water sources by the mangrove Avicennia marina.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC2cXhvFWqtrfL&md5=263d3dd5c693d16d90233d23229d14acCAS |

Semeniuk, V. (2013). Predicted response of coastal wetlands to climate change: a Western Australian model. Hydrobiologia 708, 23–43.
Predicted response of coastal wetlands to climate change: a Western Australian model.CrossRef |

Shapiro, M. A. (1975). ‘Westernport Bay Environmental Study 1973–1974.’ (Ministry for Conservation: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Sinclair, S., and Boon, P. I. (2012). Changes in the area of coastal marsh in Victoria since the mid 19th century. Cunninghamia 12, 153–176.

Stuart, S. A., Choat, B., Martin, K. C., Holbrook, N. M., and Ball, M. C. (2007). The role of freezing in setting the latitudinal limits of mangrove forests. New Phytologist 173, 576–583.
The role of freezing in setting the latitudinal limits of mangrove forests.CrossRef | 1:STN:280:DC%2BD2s%2FksVymtg%3D%3D&md5=cede66babc7d4280df27d768c6c65830CAS |

Vanderzee, M. P. (1988). Changes in saltmarsh vegetation as an early indicator of sea-level rise. In ‘Greenhouse. Planning for Climate Change’. (Ed. G. I. Pearman.) pp. 147–160. (CSIRO Publishing: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

Voice, M., Harvey, N., and Walsh, K. (2006). ‘Vulnerability to Climate Change of Australia’s Coastal Zone: Analysis of Gaps in Methods, Data and Systems Thresholds.’ (Australian Greenhouse Office: Canberra, ACT, Australia.)

Water Technology (2011). ‘Review of Hydrodynamic and Salinity Effects Associated with TSHD on the Gippsland Lakes. Report to Gippsland Ports, Sale.’ (Water Technology: Melbourne, Vic., Australia.)

West, R. J., Thorogood, C. A., Walford, T. R., and Williams, R. J. (1984). Mangrove distributions in New South Wales. Wetlands Australia 4, 2–6.

Woodroffe, C. D., and Grindrod, J. (1991). Mangrove biogeography: the role of Quaternary environmental and sea-level change. Journal of Biogeography 18, 479–492.
Mangrove biogeography: the role of Quaternary environmental and sea-level change.CrossRef |

Woodroffe, C. D., Rogers, K., McKee, K. L., Lovelock, C. E., Mendelssohn, I. A., and Saintilan, N. (2016). Mangrove sedimentation and response to relative sea-level rise. Annual Review of Marine Science 8, 243–266.
Mangrove sedimentation and response to relative sea-level rise.CrossRef | 1:STN:280:DC%2BC283lsV2itQ%3D%3D&md5=0474fc6031f2cd75a4da6eba09ac5610CAS |



Rent Article (via Deepdyve) Export Citation Cited By (1)

View Altmetrics