Wetlands Australia Journal, Vol 23, No 1 (2005)

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Aquatic macroinvertebrates of headwater streams in the south east forests - diversity and conservation management issues

Jan Miller, Robert Miller


The South East Forests National Park
Draft Plan of Management states that
"Invertebrate taxa in the south east
forests, as indeed the rest of Australia,
are largely unknown" (NSW NPWS
2005). A lack of scientific data creates
difficulties for the ecological
management of national parks and
state forests in the region. This study
provides data on macroinvertebrates
collected from streams in the South
East Forests of NSW, and assesses the
management implications arising from
the data.
Analyses of the taxa distributions and
rarity indicated that all study streams
supported some taxa that were not
present at other streams. At least five
new species of invertebrate were
collected. These results suggest that it
may not be sufficient to conserve only
representative habitat types. To
adequately manage the South East
Forests region for the conservation of
biological diversity and scientific
knowledge, all aquatic habitats should
be protected from impacts.
Aquatic habitats can be impacted by
altered hydrology, reduction of water
quality and sediment incursion. To
avoid these impacts, this study
recommends the removal of road-tostream
connections such as fords
through streams, and the prevention of
practices that could result in accidental
fires or water pollution.

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