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Quantifying human movements in the Australian Antarctic Territory: implications for intra-regional propagule transfer

Quantifying human movements in the Australian Antarctic Territory: implications for intra-regional propagule transfer
Kaitlyn Close

Authors

Kaitlyn Close
School of Geography Planning and Environmental Management, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland

Bradd Witt
School of Geography Planning and Environmental Management, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland

Jonathan Rhodes
School of Geography Planning and Environmental Management, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland

Justine Shaw
Environmental Decision Group, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland
and
Terrestrial Nearshore Ecosystems, Australian Antarctic Division, Kingston, Tasmania

Abstract

Increasing human activity in Antarctica is a threat to Antarctic terrestrial biodiversity. The introduction of non-indigenous species and biotic homogenisation can impact on Antarctic biodiversity. To date research has focused predominately on quantifying the risk of introduction of non-indigenous species to Antarctica from outside sources. However little is known about intra-regional transfer of species or propagules by humans within Antarctica. Intra-regional transfer is known to drive biotic homogenisation. Quantifying human movements enables us to understand these risks and where they are most likely to occur.

Our research aims to identify where, when, and how people have travelled within the Australian Antarctic Territory. By collating data from reports on deep field expeditions and localised travel within station operational areas we quantify the density of human visitation to specific areas.

By identifying temporal and spatial trends in human movements and examining biodiversity data of visited sites, we can determine the potential for propagule transfer from one ice free area to another. Through this work we aim to inform biosecurity protocols for intra-regional movement. Furthermore, quantifying the human footprint in the AAT informs the conservation management of ice-free areas in Antarctica. This research will deliver information relevant to the Committee for Environmental Protocol [Article 8(3)] and help to fill information gaps within the Antarctic Treaty’s Electronic Information Exchange System.

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Key dates

  • 11th June 2013
    Registrations close
  • 21st June 2013
    Registrations at the AAD open for staff
  • 24th June 2013
    Registrations at the venue open
  • 24th June 2013
    Conference commences
  • 26th June 2013
    Conference concludes

More key dates…

This page was last modified on 2 September 2013.