This book was generously gifted to The Moreton Bay Foundation by the independent group of scientists, consultants and industry experts who organised and presented the Moreton Bay Quandamooka & Catchment Forum.  It is an expansion of the research presented at the Forum and includes the latest updates available at the time of publication.

This book is dedicated to the future stewards of Moreton Bay Quandamooka and the lands and waterways of its catchment.

  1. You can purchase the printed book (648 pages) for $93.50 inc GST plus postage.
  2. You can download the book in PDF format.
  3. You can view/search the interactive online version below.
Moreton Bay Quandamooka and its catchment cover a large area of approximately 23,000 km2 and nurture the lives and livelihoods of millions of people. Burgeoning populations, urbanisation and industrialisation have put various components of this system under substantial pressure. There is some urgency to take a closer look at its current health so, from the 1st to 3rd November 2016 we did just that in the form of the Moreton Bay Quandamooka and Catchment Forum.

The Forum revisited many of the issues addressed at the Moreton Bay & Catchment Conference of 1996 (see the proceedings volume Moreton-Bay-and-Catchment 1998 at and brought together people with expertise and a passion for the Bay and the health of the lands and waters in its catchment. From the outset, our position was that this meeting should be a partnership among institutions, entities and individuals. Ideally, it should not only deliver an update of research, but also find a new way forward so that we would not have to wait another 20 years for a broad collaborative opportunity to engage in research, governance and citizen science to foster positive outcomes for the Bay and catchment.

We succeeded with the Forum, in part, due to the kind offers from particularly dedicated individuals to act as leaders of the discipline areas (called Clusters by the organisers) which, with some modifications, later became the basis of the chapters of this volume. They recruited experts and managed the process of putting together a series of presentations designed to cover the latest information available on their topic.

Some 170 attendees from a wide diversity of backgrounds and disciplines signed on, and most got to hear all of the presentations. Chaired by the Cluster Leaders, the first two full days were assigned to a rapid-fire series of ten-minute talks that summarised the current state of knowledge on a wide range of topics, and identified key research, management and legislative priorities. The third day was reserved for a series of synthesis meetings led by Cluster Leaders that drew on the evidence heard during the first two days. Significant moments included an impassioned talk on Respect and Recognition (Mind the Gap) by Darren Burns of the Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QYAC); Andrew Davidson’s very amusing and insightful talk on catchment planning, with his Duggie (dugong) awards, represented as star ratings in his formal paper with Darryl Low Choy in this volume; and Justine Kemp’s sobering analysis of regional pre- vs post-“European” sediment erosion histories. We also learned about a planned development at Toondah Harbour that would violate Moreton Bay’s Ramsar status as a Wetland of International Significance – a designation that is meant to protect habitat for migratory waders (shorebirds) and other wetland values. No doubt others will have their own significant moments, but perhaps the most significant few minutes of the entire forum occurred when John Goodman of the Goodman Foundation pledged $500,000 to establish The Moreton Bay Foundation. A remarkable family who are now likely to have made a singularly important contribution to the well-being of the Bay and its catchment.

The Forum was followed by two years of work led by Ian Tibbetts, Tamara Homburg and the Cluster Leaders, seeking papers from contributors, organising independent peer reviewers, all guided by a dedicated group of volunteer editors. We met in coffee shops, restaurants and offices to thrash out the structure and means of publishing this volume. It has been a process filled with interesting challenges, including how to fund the book’s publication. That issue was resolved with the realisation of The Moreton Bay Foundation (TMBF) and the decision to publish electronically.  We expect this first TMBF publication will be quickly followed by others, adding to a compendium of knowledge about the Bay and its attendant systems.

The Moreton Bay Quandamooka and Catchment Forum of 2016 was an important event; both for what it achieved at the time, and what it has sparked since; particularly the establishment of the multi-institutional and independent Moreton Bay Foundation Limited. We are convinced, as are the founding members of TMBF (The Goodman Family Foundation, QYAC, The University of Queensland, Griffith University, and Queensland University of Technology), that we now have a mechanism that will ensure: future partnerships in research and restoration; independent advice to government – a voice for the Bay; and a focus around which to regularly meet to review where we are and what we must do to secure a brighter future for Moreton Bay and its catchment. We have found our new way forward.

The editors,

Ian R Tibbetts1-3, Peter C Rothlisberg4, David T Neil2, Tamara A Homburg2, David T Brewer4, Angela H Arthington5

1School of Biological Sciences, 2Centre for Marine Science, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Qld 4072. 3The Moreton Bay Foundation Ltd, PO Box 3214, Newstead Qld 4006, Australia. 4CSIRO Oceans & Atmosphere, St Lucia, Qld 4072, Australia. 5Australian Rivers Institute, Griffith University, Nathan, Qld 4111, Australia.

All associated with this volume are grateful for the undinting support of the Board of the Goodman Foundation: John Goodman, Meta Goodman, James Goodman and Faileen James. Without their advice and philanthropic support, The Moreton Bay Quandamooka and Catchment Forum and this book would not have been possible. Further important support for staging the Forum came from The University of Queensland, Faculty of Science, Centre for Marine Science, School of Biological Sciences and the Global Change Institute; Griffith University’s Australian Rivers Institute; Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation; SeaLife Mooloolaba; and, The Moreton Bay Environmental Education Centre. At the concluding moments of the Moreton Bay Quandamooka and Catchment Forum John Goodman, representing the Goodman Foundation, pledged that their Foundation would support the creation of a Moreton Bay Foundation. In August 2018 and after much detailed planning, this new force for good in the Bay came into existence. We are deeply indebted to the Goodman Foundation whose foresight offers a brighter future for the Bay.

The Editors wish to warmly thank the following Cluster Leaders for their excellent and sustained commitment to the project: Ms Diane Aylward (Education), Dr Sam Capon (History and Change in Moreton Bay), Prof. Rod Connolly (Industry), Dr Justine Kemp (History and Change in Moreton Bay), Ms Jennifer Loder (Citizen Science), Prof. Catherine Lovelock (Habitats, Biodiversity and Ecosystem Function), Prof. Darryl Low Choy (Indigenous Knowledge & Culture), Prof. Stuart Phinn (Water Quality, Land-Use and Land-Cover), Dr David Rissik (Moreton Bay Marine Park), Dr Chris Roelfsema (Citizen Science), and Prof. Helen Ross (Communities and Values).

Thanks also to the invaluable contributions by the following people: Ms Anna Bagshaw (Librarian), Dr Elena Danilova (Librarian, ORCIDs, DOI assignments, Online publishing, Copyright), Ms Colleen Foelz (Copy editing), Ms Narelle Hall (RealEvents Pty Ltd, Forum planning and execution, as well as being co-editor on the 1998 Moreton Bay book), Mr Thomas Joyce (University Copyright lawyer), Dr Jude Keyse (Forum organisation, book structure), Dr Eva Kovacs (Map development and editing), Ms Taylor Maggiacomo (National Geographic, TMBF logo artwork), Dr Beryl Morris (Forum establishment), Ms Jessie Oliver (EndNote support), Ms Laura Rudd (Online documents, DOI assignments, Map development and editing), and Mr Bradley Stock (eBook website platform).

List of hitherto anonymous manuscript reviewers for whose efforts the editors are most grateful.

Adrian Fisher UNSW, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Alison Moore *UQ, School of Social Science
Andrew Olds USC, School of Science and Engineering
Andrew O’Neil HLW
Angela Arthington *ARI
Angela Dean QUT, Institute for Future Environments
Armando Apan USQ, School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
Barry Pollock Sunfish Queensland Inc.
Beth Fulton CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Catherine Collier JCU, Centre for Tropical Water and Aquatic Ecosystem Research
Daryl McPhee Bond University, Faculty of Society & Design
David Brewer *CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
David Neil *UQ, Centre for Marine Science
David Rissik BMT Ltd
Douglas Baker QUT, Faculty of Science and Engineering
Frank Coman CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Gayle Mayes USC, Sustainability Research Centre
Harry Houridis Worley Parsons Ltd
Jack Coates-Marnane Griffith University, School of Environment and Science
James Udy *QUT, School of Earth, Environment and Biological Sciences
James Webley Qld Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
Jan Packer UQ, School of Business
Jessie Oliver Australian Citizen Science Association
Jodie Mehrtens Qld Department of Environment and Science
Johanna Schliephack Griffith University, Institute for Tourism
John Butcher *Griffith University, School of Environment and Science
Jon Olley Griffith University, School of Environment and Science
Jonathan Staunton-Smith Qld Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
Judith Nissen Nissen Associates Pty Ltd.
Judy O’Neil University of Maryland, Centre for Environmental Science
Julie Dean UQ, Institute for Social Science Research
Karen Arthur Qld Department of Environment and Energy
Kath McMahon Edith Cowan University, School of Science
Katrina Davis Exeter University, School of Business
Kay Dimmock Southern Cross University, School of Business and Tourism
Kerrie Swadling UTas, Institute for marine and antarctic studies
Kerrylee Rogers University of Woolongong, School of Earth, Atmospheric and Life Sciences
Kim Johnston QUT, School of Business
Kurt Derbyshire Qld Department of Environment and Science
Liz Gould HLW
Louise Kuchel UQ, School of Biological Sciences
Lydie Couturier Universite de Bretagne Occidentale
Marcus Haward UTas, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
Maria Beger University of Leeds, School of Biology
Mark Hamann JCU, Centre for Tropical Water and Aquatic Ecosystem Research
Martina Doblin University of Technology Sydeney, Faculty of Science
Mibu Fischer CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Michael Bryden UQ (Emeritus), School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Michael Sievers Griffith University, School of Environment and Science
Mike Ronan Qld Department of Environment and Science
Natalie Jones UQ, School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Nicola Udy Qld Parks and Wildlife Service
Nigel Preston *UQ, School of Biological Sciences
Paul Maxwell Healthy Land and Water
Peter Corkeron NOAA Fisheries
Peter Driscoll Queensland Wader Study Group
Rick Morton Port of Brisbane
Ro Hill CSIRO Land and Water
Rod Connolly Griffith University, School of Environment and Science
Rod Fensham UQ, School of Biological Sciences
Rodrigo Bustamante CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Russ Babcock CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Selina Ward UQ, School of Biological Sciences
Stephen Lewis JCU, Centre for Tropical Water and Aquatic Ecosystem Research
Steve Blaber *CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Tim Smith USC, Faculty of Arts, Business and Law
Tony Gill NSW Office of Environment and Heritage


Abbreviations: ARI, Australian Rivers Institute, Griffith University; CSIRO, Commonwealth Science and Industrial Research Organisation; HLW, Healthy Land and Water; JCU, James Cook University; NSW, New South Wales; NOAA, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; QUT, Queensland University of Technology; UQ, University of Queensland; UNSW, University of New South Wales; USC, University of the Sunshine Coast; USQ, University of Southern Queensland; UTas, University of Tasmania.

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