Pacific Conservation Biology Pacific Conservation Biology Society
A journal dedicated to conservation and wildlife management in the Pacific region.
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Biodiversity conservation in Sydney Harbour

Joanne L. Banks A E , Pat Hutchings B , Belinda Curley A C , Luke Hedge A D , Bob Creese C and Emma Johnston A D
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Sydney Institute of Marine Science, 19 Chowder Bay Road, Mosman, NSW 2088, Australia.

B Australian Museum Research Institute, Australian Museum, 1 William Street, Sydney, NSW 2010, Australia.

C Port Stephens Fisheries Institute, Locked Bag 1, Nelson Bay, NSW 2315, Australia.

D The University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia.

E Corresponding author. Email: Jo.Banks@sims.org.au

Pacific Conservation Biology 22(2) 98-109 https://doi.org/10.1071/PC15048
Submitted: 7 December 2015  Accepted: 1 May 2016   Published: 3 June 2016

Abstract

Biodiversity conservation is a major issue in ports and harbours as scientists, managers and the public become increasingly aware of the importance of healthy ecosystems to the wellbeing of urban populations. Sydney’s Harbour provides essential environmental, social and economic values to community, government and industry. Recent systematic reviews of the biological and physical characteristics of Sydney Harbour revealed high environmental and conservation value, especially considering the large numbers of people using its resources. However, like many coastal areas, the harbour has been subject to stressors such as habitat loss, metal, organic and nutrient pollution, the introduction of non-indigenous species, foreshore construction and commercial and recreational fishing. Here we outline the environmental assets of the harbour and the major threats, and report on current and developing conservation strategies. By learning about the progress of environmental management in Sydney Harbour, the difficulties faced and new planning strategies implemented, coastal and harbour environmental managers within the region can be better prepared when faced with similar challenges.

Additional keywords: environmental protection, habitat loss, harbour environments, overarching strategy.


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