Intensive land use increases nutrient runoff to rivers, lakes and estuaries with adverse effects on ecosystems. Determining what combinations of land use and management enable the health and services of these ecosystems to be maintained or restored is a major challenge for councils.
Estuary sedimentation is a continual natural process. Land slope, land use, soil type and rainfall all have significant impacts, and form a complex spatial pattern of sediment generation.
Research has revealed key differences in seafloor communities and habitats inside and outside the Separation Point trawl fishing exclusion zone in Tasman Bay. These have important implications for valuable benthic fisheries in the area.