Ecological Monitoring

Monitoring is a critical component of ecosystem management, as it informs whether objectives are being meet and can provide information that will guide adaptive management. Rakali has been involved in a number of long-term ecological monitoring programs.  Examples of ecological monitoring carried out by Rakali Ecological Consulting include:

Vegetation Response to Environmental Watering at Lake Yando (2013 to 2015)
[Client: North Central Catchment Management Authority]

This project involved collecting floristic data from 8 permanent, depth-stratified quadrats in five separate monitoring events and making observations about the response of native wetland vegetation and fauna to environmental watering within the quadrats and in the wetland as a whole. The monitoring detected a high diversity of indigenous flora and fauna, including many threatened species. Information gathered during this project will be used to plan future environmental water management and ecological restoration at Lake Yando and other similar wetlands.

Wetland vegetation benchmarking at sites along the Wimmera Mallee Pipeline (2014)
[Client: North Central, Mallee and Wimmera CMA]Black-Box-Wetland,-Roselyn

Flora and Fauna surveys and Index of Wetland Condition assessments at 50 sites that can receive environmental water deliveries along the Wimmera Mallee Pipeline. These surveys will provide baseline data to monitor the effects of management interventions including artificial water delivery for ecological purposes.


Monitoring the ecological response of four wetlands (Moodies, Reedy, Black and Kinnairds Swamps) to the delivery of environmental water (2008 to 2015)Brolga,-Tang-Tang
[Client: Goulburn Broken CMA]

The purpose of the study was to monitor the ecological response of Black, Moodies, Reedy and Kinnairds Swamps to flooding from the delivery of environmental water and from rainfall induced catchment runoff.  Water quality , water depth, understorey vegetation, waterbird and frog populations were surveyed. Findings were used to make recommendations on vegetation, fauna and hydrological management of each wetland and comments on the risks and benefits of the delivery of environmental water.


Establishing monitoring in sites of high conservation significance for Seasonal Herbaceous Wetlands (2014) [Client: Goulburn Broken CMA]Plains-Grassy-Wetland,-Boorhaman-Plains

Seasonal Herbaceous Wetlands are a nationally critically endangered wetland community found on the relatively fertile lowland plains of SE Australia.  GBCMA aim to protect these significant wetlands and monitor their condition. Vegetation surveys, Index of Wetland Condition (IWC) assessments, and bird and frog transects were carried out within high value Seasonal Herbaceous Wetlands. Results were used to provide recommendations on vegetation, fauna and hydrological management of each wetland.



Monitoring the ecological response to flooding of One Tree, Two Tree, Wallenjoe and Mansfield Swamps (2010 – 2011) [Client: Goulburn Broken CMA]Red-Gum-Swamp,-Wallenjoe-ps

Comprehensive assessment of the response to flooding by waterbirds, frogs and aquatic vegetation within One Tree, Two Tree, Wallenjoe and Mansfield Swamps through a three-stage, flora and fauna monitoring survey undertaken over a six-month period.


Bay wide Monitoring (2009 – 2011)
[Client: Port of Melbourne Corporation]Transition-from-Beaded-Glasswort,-to-Shrubby-Glasswort-to-Berm-Shrubland,-Mud-Island

Monitoring of Saltmarsh composition and extent at four Ramsar listed wetlands following the controversial deepening of the entrance to Port Philip Bay. This project involved repeated permanent quadrat surveys and the fine-scale mapping of saltmarsh vegetation community boundaries to a high degree of accuracy using a differential GPS.