Professor William Gladstone

Biography

Bill Gladstone is a marine biologist with research and teaching interests in marine conservation biology, fish behavioural ecology, and marine environmental management.

A major focus of Bill’s teaching has been the involvement of students in solving environmental issues to deepen field and classroom learning, and the excellence of these initiatives has been widely recognized through many teaching awards from the Dean, Vice-Chancellor, Carrick Institute, and the National Trust.

Particular research interests of Bill’s include the value of biodiversity surrogates for selecting and designing marine protected areas, reef fish spawning aggregations, environmental controls of reef fish spawning, and the management and conservation of marine biodiversity in developing countries.
Bill combines his academic career with work in the profession and has worked on many major national and international projects including outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish on the Great Barrier Reef, the Torres Strait Baseline Study (both for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority), management of international networks of marine protected areas in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (for the Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden PERSGA) and the Sulu-Sulawesi Sea Marine Ecoregion (for WWF), and the Strategic Action Programme for the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (a Global Environment Facility project). He regularly works in the Port Stephens-Great Lakes and Batemans Marine Park.
Bill has supervised to completion 8 PhD students, 3 research Masters students, 2 Masters coursework project students, and 22 BSc (Hons) students.

Prior to starting work at UTS in January 2010, Bill was Associate Professor in the School of Environmental and Life Sciences, University of Newcastle (Central Coast campus).

Professional

Bill's recent industry collaborators for research and consultancies include:

  • Hunter-Central Rivers Catchment Management Authority
  • NSW Marine Parks
  • Gosford City Council
  • On Water Marine Services
  • Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority
  • Cardno Ecology Lab, and Sydney Water.

Bill is active in the Australian Marine Sciences Association (AMSA), being President of the NSW Branch (2007-09) and a member of NSW Branch Council (since 2009). With his AMSA colleague Professor David Booth, Bill developed in 2008 the NSW AMSA Position Statement on Marine Protected Areas and No-Take Sanctuary Zones which supported the scientific evidence underlying the usefulness of marine protected areas for biodiversity conservation. Bill’s membership of other professional associations includes: Australian Society for Fish Biology, Ecological Society of Australia, Royal Zoological Society of NSW, and the Society for Conservation Biology.

Bill is currently the scientific representative on the Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park Advisory Board, and the alternative science representative (with Professor Marine Byrne) on the NSW Marine Parks Advisory Council. Bill was a partner (with the Community Environment Network CEN) in the establishment of the Central Coast Marine Discovery Centre at Terrigal in May 2009.

Bill is on the Editorial Board of the journal Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems.

Image of William Gladstone
Head of School, School of the Environment, School of the Environment
Core Member, Centre for Environmental Sustainability
B.Sc (Hons), PhD
 
Phone
+61 2 9514 8272
Room
CB04.05.49B

Research Interests

Effectiveness of biodiversity surrogates (indicator groups, habitats, flagship species, environmental diversity) and rapid assessment techniques in the selection and design of marine protected areas.
Fish spawning aggregations, in particular the factors differentiating aggregation sites and the behaviour of fishes at aggregation sites.
Biology, behaviour, and conservation of seahorses and pipefishes.
Approaches in coastal and marine environmental management, in particular the sustainable management of the human uses of marine biodiversity in developing countries.

Can supervise: Yes
Current Research Student Supervision - Michael Baer (M Phil): Movement and status of marine turtles in Lake Macquarie, NSW (co-supervisor Dr G Ross). - Kylie Dixon (PhD): Investigating the usefulness of habitat types as a surrogate for polychaete assemblages in the Port Stephens - Great Lakes Marine Parks (co-supervisor Dr P Hutchings). - Les Edwards (PhD): Factors influencing the distribution and abundance of fishes in Intermittently Closed and Open Lakes and Lagoons (ICOLLs). (co-supervisor Dr D Powter). - Guy Graham (M Phil): The influences of an artificial reef (HMAS Adelaide) on the abundance of fishes. David Harasti (PhD): The ecology and conservation of syngnathids in the Manning and Hawkesbury bioregions (co-supervisors Dr T Glasby, Dr K Martin-Smith). - Vanessa Owen (PhD): Assessing the conservation value of marine protected areas (co-supervisor Dr A Jordan). - Carla Sbrocchi (M Phil): Assessing the validity of community-gathered resource condition data in seagrass habitats in Australia (co-supervisor Dr T Glasby) Michelle Voyer (M Phil): Assessing the social impacts of marine protected areas. Research Students Completed - Samantha Thewes (M Phil 2009): The reproductive biology and spawning behaviour of Chromis hypsilepis (Pisces: Pomacentridae). - Bill Chivers (PhD 2009): Generalised, parsimonious, individual-based computer models of ecological systems (co-supervisor Dr R Herbert). - Jane Smith (M Scientific Studies 2008): Spatial variation in reef fish assemblages in the vicinity of the proposed scuttling site of the ex-HMAS Adelaide. - Defri Yona (M Scientific Studies 2008): Comparison of fish assemblage structure using baited remote underwater video stations (BRUVS) among three different beach types on the Central Coast region, New South Wales. - Mohammad Shokri (PhD 2007): Selection of estuarine protected areas. - John Duguman (PhD 2008): Integrated conservation and development projects in Papua New Guinea, a case study approach (co-supervisor Dr S Momtaz). - Marie-France Boissonneault (PhD 2008): Creatures comfort: an examination of the historical bond between nonhuman animals and human lived experiences (co-supervisor Dr S McIlwaine) - Robert Ramos (PhD 2007): Age and growth estimates for the Port Jackson shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni (Mayer, 1793), from New South Wales, Australia. - Aude Loisier (MSc 2007): A test of the potential effectiveness of rapid biodiversity assessment and environmental diversity for the selection of intertidal protected areas. - Jason Morton (PhD 2007): The ecology of three species of wrasse (Pisces: Labridae) on temperate rocky reefs of New South Wales, Australia. - David Powter (PhD 2006): Conservation biology of the Port Jackson shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni, in New South Wales. - Julie-Anne Harty (PhD 2006): Response of frog populations to habitat attributes and riparian zone rehabilitation across an urban-rural gradient in the Central Coast of New South Wales, Australia (co-supervisor Dr A Chalmers). - Glenn Courtenay (MSc 2004): Measuring intertidal rock assemblages and intertidal settlement to artificial substrata to indicate impact of urbanised catchment discharge (co-supervisor Dr M Schreider). BSc(Hons): 22 students supervised.

  • Ecosystems and their management
  • Biodiversity science
  • Resource assessment and monitoring
  • Marine fish biology
  • Conservation biology
  • Environmental protection and management

Book Chapters

Gladstone, W. 2010, 'Reef fishes' in Standard Survey Methods for Key Habitats and Key Species in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, Jeddah, pp. 143-206.
Gladstone, W. 2009, 'Conservation and management of tropical coastal ecosystems' in I Nagelkerken (ed), Ecological Connectivity among Tropical Coastal Ecosystems, Springer, Dordrecht, the Netherlands, pp. 565-605.
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All major coastal ecosystems in the tropics are being degraded. The problems include losses of biodiversity, reduced ecosystem functions, and costs to coastal human societies. Declines in species+ abundances, and habitat loss and modi?cation are the result of the demands for aquaculture, port construction, trawling, excessive nutrient loads, over?shing and collecting, sedimentation from catchment activities, invasive species, and climate change. A global response to these changes has been conservation and management approaches that aim to reduce, reverse, and prevent unnatural changes and address their underlying causes. Successes in conservation and management are likely when actions are designed to achieve the fundamental ecological goals of ensuring resilience, maintaining ecosystem connectivity, protecting water quality, conserving species-at-risk, conserving representative samples of species and assemblages, and managing at the appropriate spatial scale. Achieving societal aspirations for coastal ecosystems requires that management approaches address the socio-economic aspects of issues and include stakeholder consultation, participation, and education

Conference Papers

Kabir, S.Z., Momtaz, S. & Gladstone, W. 2010, 'The quality of Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in Bangladesh', 30th Annual Meeting of the International Association for Impact Assessment, Geneva, April 2010 in IAIA10 Conference Proceedings, ed Loreley Fortuny, IAIA International Headquarters, United States.
Gladstone, W. & Fisher, P.R. 1999, 'Status of cetaceans in the Farasan Islands Marine Protected Area (Red Sea)', Spain, April 1999 in Annual Conference, European Cetacean Society, ed Peter Evans, European Cetacean Society, Spain.
Gladstone, W. 1997, 'Trace metal levels from the Torres Strait Baseline Study', Townsville, January 1997 in Fly River Discharge Workshop, ed NA, Australian Institute of Marine Science, australia.
Gladstone, W. & McGrath, V. 1995, 'Trace metals in the traditional seafoods of the Torres Strait', Brisbane, January 1995 in The State of the Marine Environment Conference, ed NA, Australia Technical Department of the Environment, Sport and Territories, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1994, 'The Farasan marine environment: biological resources, conservation status and human use', Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, April 1994 in Symposium on the Red Sea Marine Environment, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, ed NA, King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia.
Gladstone, W. 1994, 'The Farasan Islands - biological resources, conservation status, human uses and impacts - a basis for management.', Townsville, September 1994 in Joint Scientific Conference, ed NA, Australian Marine Sciences Association/Australian Coral Reef Society/International Society for Reef, australia.
Brodie, J.E., Dight, I.J. & Gladstone, W. 1994, 'Metal concentrations in marine sediments and biota from the Torres Strait: preliminary results from the Tores Strait Baseline Study', Townsville, July 1994 in PACON 94, ed Orpha Bellwood, James Cook University, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1993, 'Trace metal levels in the Torres Strait marine environment', Thursday Island, January 1993 in Torres Strait Island Coordinating Council Workshop 'A Marine Strategy for the Torres Strait', ed NA, Torres Strait Island Coordinating Council, australia.
D, L. & Gladstone, W. 1993, 'The Torres Strait Baseline Study', Townsville, January 1993 in Institute of Marine Science/National Science Foundation Workshop 'Influence of Tropical Rivers on Coastal Oceanographic Processes', ed NA, Australian Institute of Marine Science/National Science Foundation, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1992, 'The history, current status and future possibilities of controlling crown-of-thorns starfish', Townsville, January 1992 in Crown-of-Thorns Starfish Research Committee/Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Workshop 'The Possible Causes and Consequences of Outbreaks of Crown-of-Thorns Starfish', ed NA, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1992, 'The Torres Strait Baseline Study: monitoring for possible effects of mining operations in the Fly River catchment area on the Torres Strait marine environment', Guam, June 1992 in 7th International Coral Reef Symposium, ed NA, University of Guam Marine Laboratory, Guam.
Lassig, B.R., Gladstone, W., Moran, P. & Engelhardt, U. 1992, 'A crown-of-thorns starfish Contingency Plan.', Townsville, January 1992 in Crown-of-Thorns Starfish Research Committee/Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Workshop 'The Possible Causes and Consequences of Outbreaks of Crown-of-Thorns Starfish', ed NA, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, australia.
Lassig, B.R., Gladstone, W., Moran, P. & Engelhardt, U. 1992, 'A crown-of-thorns starfish Contingency Plan', Guam, June 1992 in 7th International Coral Reef Symposium, ed NA, University of Guam Marine Laboratory, Guam.
Gladstone, W. 1991, 'Crown-of-thorns spawning', Townsville, January 1991 in Crown-of-Thorns Starfish Research Committee/Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Workshop 'Reproduction, Recruitment and Hydrodynamics in the Crown-of-Thorns Phenomenon', ed NA, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1990, 'Mating system and spawning periodicity in triggerfish', Townsville, July 1990 in Annual Conference, Australian Coral Reef Society, ed na, Australian Coral Reef Society, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1988, 'Juvenile survivorship in a brooding coral reef fish: variability from incomplete and complete experiments', Sydney, January 1988 in Ecological Society of Australia Workshop "Variability in Populations, Communities and Ecosystems",, ed NA, Ecological Society of Australia, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1988, 'Correlates and possible costs of reproductive success in males of a haremic coral reef fish.', Townsville, August 1988 in 6th International Coral Reef Symposium, ed NA, Reefbase, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1987, 'Variations in the life history of Canthigaster valentini (Tetraodontidae) at Lizard Island.', Canberra, July 1987 in Annual Conference, Australian Society for Fish Biology, ed NA, Australian Society for Fish Biology, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1987, 'Reproductive success in a coral reef fish: variability and costs', Sydney, January 1987 in Annual Conference, Australian Coral Reef Society, ed NA, Australian Coral Reef Society, australia.
Gladstone, W. 1984, 'Mating system and reproductive success of the sharpnose pufferfish, Canthigaster valentini, at Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef.', Sydney, January 1984 in Annual Conference, Ecological Society of Australia, ed NA, Ecological Society of Australia, australia.
Stroud, G.J., Gladstone, W., Goldman, B. & Talbot, F.H. 1983, 'Development, growth and age determination of the sharpnose pufferfish Canthigaster valentini (Pisces: Tetraodontidae).', Narrandera, January 1983 in Annual Conference, Australian Society for Fish Biology, ed NA, Australian Society for Fish Biology, australia.

Journal Articles

Gladstone, W. & Courtenay, G.C. 2014, 'Impacts of docks on seagrass and effects of management practices to ameliorate these impacts', Estuarine Coastal And Shelf Science, vol. 136, pp. 53-60.
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Seagrasses have high conservation and human-use values, but around the world they are being damaged by human activities. Compared to the larger spatial scale at which some human activities affect estuaries and their seagrasses (e.g. catchment disturbance, dredging, pollution, trawling), recreational boating and infrastructure of moorings and docks act at smaller scales. However, the cumulative effects contribute to stresses acting on seagrass beds. This study assessed the effects of docks on the native seagrass Zostera muelleri subsp. capricorni in an estuary in south-east Australia and of current management practices designed to reduce dock impacts on this seagrass. A field survey found that seagrass biomass was significantly reduced below docks, and the effects were not influenced by dock orientation. Management practices requiring the use of a mesh decking to provide greater light penetration reduced, but did not eliminate, the reduction in seagrass biomass caused by docks. A modified beyond BACI experiment provided evidence for a causal link between the installation of wooden or mesh docks and reductions in biomass of seagrass. The reduction in biomass was apparent 6 mo after dock installation, and by 26 mo seagrass biomass had declined by at least 90%. Faced with increasing coastal populations, increases in recreational use, and continued pressures from other human activities, alternative management practices that further minimize the effects of docks are needed.
Alexander, T.J. & Gladstone, W. 2013, 'Assessing the effectiveness of a long-standing rocky intertidal protected area and its contribution to the regional conservation of species, habitats and assemblages', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, vol. 23, pp. 111-123.
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The acceptance of reserves as a useful management strategy relies on evidence of their effectiveness in preserving stocks of harvested species and conserving biodiversity. A history of ad hoc decisions in terrestrial and marine protected area planning has meant that many of these areas are contributing inefficiently to conservation goals. The conservation value of existing protected areas should be assessed when planning the placement of additional areas in a reserve network. This study tested (1) the effectiveness of protection for intertidal molluscs of a marine reserve (Bouddi Marine Extension, NSW, Australia) established in 1971, and (2) the contribution of the protected area to the conservation of regional species, assemblages, and habitats. The shell length and population density of one harvested (Cellana tramoserica), and three non-harvested species (Bembicium nanum, Morula marginalba, Nerita atramentosa) of intertidal molluscs were examined in the protected area and two reference locations over two seasons. The heavily collected limpet C. tramoserica was significantly larger in the protected area and was the only species to exhibit a significant difference. No species significantly differed in population density between the protected area and reference locations. Temporally replicated surveys of macro-molluscs at 21 locations over 75?km of coastline identified that the existing protected area included 50% of species, two of five assemblage types and 19 of 20 intertidal rocky shore habitats surveyed in the study region. Reservation of a further three rocky reefs would protect a large proportion of species (71%), a representative of each assemblage and all habitat types. Despite originally being selected in the absence of information on regional biodiversity, the protected area is today an effective starting point for expansion to a regional network of intertidal protected areas.
Cvitanovic, C., Wilson, S.K., Fulton, C.J., Almany, G.R., Anderson, P., Babcock, R.C., Ban, N.C., Beeden, R.J., Beger, M., Cinner, J., Dobbs, K., Evans, L.S., Farnham, A., Friedman, K.J., Gale, K., Gladstone, W., Grafton, Q., Graham, N.A., Gudge, S., Harrison, P.L., Holmes, T.H., Johnstone, N., Jones, G.P., Jordan, A., Kendrick, A.J., Klein, C.J., Little, L.R., Malcolm, H.A., Morris, D., Possingham, H.P., Prescott, J., Pressey, R.L., Skilleter, G.A., Simpson, C., Waples, K., Wilson, D. & Williamson, D.H. 2013, 'Critical research needs for managing coral reef marine protected areas: Perspectives of academics and managers', Journal of Environmental Management, vol. 114, pp. 84-91.
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Marine protected areas (MPAs) are a primary policy instrument for managing and protecting coral reefs. Successful MPAs ultimately depend on knowledge-based decision making, where scientific research is integrated into management actions. Fourteen coral reef MPA managers and sixteen academics from eleven research, state and federal government institutions each outlined at least five pertinent research needs for improving the management of MPAs situated in Australian coral reefs. From this list of 173 key questions, we asked members of each group to rank questions in order of urgency, redundancy and importance, which allowed us to explore the extent of perceptional mismatch and overlap among the two groups. Our results suggest the mismatch among MPA managers and academics is small, with no significant difference among the groups in terms of their respective research interests, or the type of questions they pose. However, managers prioritised spatial management and monitoring as research themes, whilst academics identified climate change, resilience, spatial management, fishing and connectivity as the most important topics. Ranking of the posed questions by the two groups was also similar, although managers were less confident about the achievability of the posed research questions and whether questions represented a knowledge gap. We conclude that improved collaboration and knowledge transfer among management and academic groups can be used to achieve similar objectives and enhance the knowledge-based management of MPAs.
Shokri, M.R. & Gladstone, W. 2013, 'Limitations of habitats as biodiversity surrogates for conservation planning in estuaries', Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, vol. 185, pp. 3477-3492.
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Increasing pressures on global biodiversity and lack of data on the number and abundance of species have motivated conservation planners and researchers to use more readily available information as proxies or surrogates for biodiversity. "Habitat" is one of the most frequently used surrogates but its assumed value in marine conservation planning is not often tested. The present study developed and tested three alternative habitat classification schemes of increasing complexity for a large estuary in south-east Australia and tested their effectiveness in predicting spatial variation in macroinvertebrate biodiversity and selecting estuarine protected areas to represent species. The three habitat classification schemes were: (1) broad-scale habitats (e.g., mangroves and seagrass), (2) subdivision of each broad-scale habitat by a suite of environmental variables that varied significantly throughout the estuary, and (3) subdivision of each broad-scale habitat by the subset of environmental variables that best explained spatial variation in macroinvertebrate biodiversity. Macroinvertebrate assemblages differed significantly among the habitats in each classification scheme. For each classification scheme, habitat richness was significantly correlated with species richness, total density of macroinvertebrates, assemblage dissimilarity, and summed irreplaceability. However, in a reserve selection process designed to represent examples of each habitat, no habitat classification scheme represented species significantly better than a random selection of sites. Habitat classification schemes may represent variation in estuarine biodiversity; however, the results of this study suggest they are inefficient in designing representative networks of estuarine protected areas.
Shokri, M.R. & Gladstone, W. 2013, 'Integrating vulnerability into estuarine conservation planning: Does the data treatment method matter?', Estuaries and Coasts, vol. 36, no. 4, pp. 866-880.
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Protected areas will more efficiently protect biodiversity if threats to the persistence of populations are addressed. Seagrass meadows are globally regarded as critical habitats because of their ecosystem services, human use values, and their diminishing extent. While selecting priority areas for conservation of seagrass meadows is largely aimed at maximizing the protection of their biodiversity, little attention is paid to consider simultaneously the representation of biodiversity and the minimization of threats. This study developed and tested an approach for integrating vulnerability of seagrass meadows to anthropogenic disturbance with the selection of estuarine-protected areas. Vulnerability was measured by data on different land use types in subcatchments. Conservation value was measured by irreplaceability, diversity indices, and rarity of macroinvertebrate species in seagrass meadows. Vulnerability was incorporated into conservation planning by plotting grid cell scores for conservation value versus their scores for vulnerability. The results showed that the performance of the model for the integration of vulnerability into estuarine conservation planning was sensitive to the data treatment. The vulnerability of seagrass meadows and accordingly the arrangement of priority areas for conservation and management attention may change if more information is incorporated into the measurement of vulnerability.
Gladstone, W., Curley, B.G. & Shokri, M.R. 2013, 'Environmental impacts of tourism in the Gulf and the Red Sea', Marine Pollution Bulletin, vol. 72, pp. 375-388.
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The Gulf and Red Sea possess diverse coastal and marine environments that support rapidly expanding mass tourism. Despite the associated environmental risks, there is no analysis of the tourism-related literature or recent analysis of impacts. Environmental issues reported in 101 publications (25 from the Gulf, 76 from the Red Sea) include 61 purported impacts (27 from the Gulf, 45 from the Red Sea). Gulf literature includes quantitative studies (68% publications) and reviews (32%), and addresses mostly land reclamation and artificial habitats. Most Gulf studies come from Iran and UAE (64%). Red Sea literature includes quantitative studies (81%) and reviews (11%), with most studies occurring in Egypt (70%). The most published topics relate to coral breakage and its management. A full account of tourism+s environmental impacts is constrained by limited tourism data, confounding of impacts with other coastal developments, lack of baseline information, shifting baselines, and fragmentation of research across disciplines.
Harasti, D.I. & Gladstone, W. 2013, 'Does underwater flash photography affect the behaviour, movement and site persistence of seahorses?', Journal Of Fish Biology, vol. 83, no. 5, pp. 1344-1353.
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The effect of flash photography on seahorse species has never been tested. An experiment was established to test the effect of flash photography and the handling of Hippocampus whitei, a medium-sized seahorse species endemic to Australia, on their behavioural responses, movements and site persistence. A total of 24 H. whitei were utilized in the experiment with eight in each of the three treatments (flash photography, handling and control). The effect of underwater flash photography on H. whitei movements was not significant; however, the effect of handling H. whitei to take a photograph had a significant effect on their short-term behavioural responses to the photographer. Kaplan+Meier log-rank test revealed that there was no significant difference in site persistence of H. whitei from each of the three treatments and that flash photography had no long-term effects on their site persistence. It is concluded that the use of flash photography by divers is a safe and viable technique with H. whitei , particularly if photographs can be used for individual identification purposes.
Voyer, M., Dreher, T.I., Gladstone, W. & Goodall, H. 2013, 'Who cares wins: The role of local news and news sources in influencing community responses to marine protected areas', Ocean & Coastal Management, vol. 85, no. A, pp. 29-38.
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Mass media is a key tool by which environmental interventions, such as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are communicated to the public. The way in which local news outlets present and explain MPAs to local communities is likely to be influential in determining how they respond to the proposal. In particular the tendency of news media to focus on areas of conflict and dispute ensures ideology and politics play a central role in reporting of MPA proposals, often simplifying debate into an `us versus them+ or `fishers versus conservationists+ ideological conflict. This can lead to the outright rejection of an MPA or undermine acceptance of the park within local communities. The media coverage of two marine parks in NSW, Australia was compared to determine the way in which news presented the parks to each community and how this may have influenced public acceptance of the parks. In particular the study examined the role ideology and politics played in the news coverage of each park by investigating the way in which the news was framed and the positions of key media spokespeople. Media coverage of the Batemans Marine Park appears to have been highly politicised and heavily influenced by the strong convictions of a small handful of prominent spokespeople. By way of contrast media coverage of the Port Stephens Great Lakes Marine Park was more nuanced and drew from a wide range of sources. This research provides insight into how areas of conflict could be reframed as opportunities that enhance MPA planning exercises and highlights how ideology can help shape community sentiment. Acknowledging the role of ideology in contested areas such as these allows for the development of strategies that can accommodate as well as moderate its influence. These strategies may include the incorporation of `bottom up+ approaches into MPA planning, the promotion and support of a range of voices within the community, and seeking out and building upon common ground and shared values.
Morton, J.K. & Gladstone, W. 2013, 'Changes in rocky reef fish assemblages throughout an estuary with a restricted inlet', Hydrobiologia, vol. 724, no. 1, pp. 235-253.
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Rocky reef habitat is common in many estuaries, yet its role as a habitat for fishes is poorly understood. There is also limited understanding of how access of coastal species into estuaries and habitat quality can affect the distribution of rocky reef fishes within estuaries. This study used baited remote underwater video stations to determine spatial patterns in fish assemblages associated with rocky reef habitat throughout a barrier estuary with a permanently open but restricted inlet. Estuarine rocky reefs provided habitat for a diverse assemblage of fishes, many of which were large juveniles and subadults. In the absence of a pronounced salinity or temperature gradient, a clear transition in fish assemblages occurred from coastal waters, through the inlet channel, to the central estuary, and into the inner estuary. The inlet channel, notably its narrowness and length, limits tidal input into this estuary, which acts as a significant impediment to the dispersal of many coastal fishes, and insufficient habitat excludes many coastal rocky reef species from the inner estuary. This study highlights the need to recognise estuarine rocky reefs as providing habitat for diverse fish assemblages and the role inlets play in restricting access of coastal species.
Voyer, M., Gladstone, W. & Goodall, H. 2012, 'Methods of social assessment in Marine Protected Area planning: Is public participation enough?', Marine Policy, vol. 36, pp. 432-439.
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Addressing social and economic considerations is crucial to the success of Marine Protected Area (MPA) planning and management. Ineffective social assessment can alienate local communities and under- mine the success of existing and future MPAs. It is rare to critique the success of methods used currently to incorporate social and economic considerations into MPA planning. Three Australian MPA planning processes covering three states and incorporating federal and state jurisdictions are reviewed in order to determine how potential social impacts were assessed and considered. These case studies indicate that Social Impact Assessment (SIA) is under-developed in Australian MPA planning. Assessments rely heavily on public participation and economic modelling as surrogates for dedicated SIA and are followed commonly by attitudinal surveys to gauge public opinion on the MPA after its establishment. The emergence of issues around public perception of the value of MPAs indicates the failure of some of these proposals to adequately consider social factors in planning and management. This perception may have potential implications for the long term success of individual MPAs. It may also compromise Australia's ability to meet international commitments for MPA targets to gazette at least 10% of all its marine habitats as MPAs. Indeed, this is demonstrated in two of the three case studies where social and economic arguments against MPAs have been used to delay or block the future expansion of the MPA network.
Courtenay, G.C., Smith, D. & Gladstone, W. 2012, 'Occupational health issues in marine and freshwater research', Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 1-11.
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Marine and freshwater scientists are potentially exposed to a wide variety of occupational hazards. Depending on the focus of their research, risks may include animal attacks, physiological stresses, exposure to toxins and carcinogens, and dangerous environmental conditions. Many of these hazards have been investigated amongst the general population in their recreational use of the environment; however, very few studies have specifically related potential hazards to occupational exposure. For example, while the incidence of shark and crocodile attacks may invoke strong emotions and the occupational risk of working with these animals is certainly real, many more people are stung by jellyfish or bitten by snakes or dogs each year. Furthermore, a large proportion of SCUBA-related injuries and deaths are incurred by novice or uncertified divers, rather than professional divers using aquatic environments. Nonetheless, marine and freshwater research remains a potentially risky occupation, and the likelihood of death, injury and long-term health impacts still needs to be seriously considered.
Gladstone, W., Lindfield, S., Coleman, M.A. & Kelaher, B.P. 2012, 'Optimisation of baited remote underwater video sampling designs for estuarine fish assemblages', Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, vol. 429, pp. 28-35.
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Baited remote underwater video stations (BRUVS) are used for monitoring fish assemblages and assessing management effectiveness in reef environments but are infrequently used in estuaries. A review of the BRUVS literature found that most adopted sampling designs from other studies were rarely designed from pilot studies. This potentially compromises their value for monitoring natural and anthropogenic variation. The aims of this study were: (i) to assess the suitability of BRUVS for sampling fishes in estuarine habitats (seagrass beds and unvegetated sediments) and (ii) to develop an optimal and cost effective sampling methodology for each habitat. Fishes in both habitats were sampled independently using BRUVS with soak times of 30, 60, 90 min (n = 4). Thirty five species of fishes were recorded including 18 species of economic importance. Mean number of species, mean total Max N and mean Max N of species did not differ among soak times. Precision was generally greater in seagrass and in both habitats it improved with increasing soak time. Bootstrapping revealed that greater improvements in precision occurred from increasing soak time rather than increasing replication. A sampling design with n = 5 replicates of 90 min soak time was optimal for most variables. This sampling effort is greater than many current applications of BRUVS. The results highlight the importance of pilot studies to optimise sampling methods and develop cost effective and statistically-robust monitoring programs.
Harasti, D.I., Martin-smith, K. & Gladstone, W. 2012, 'Population dynamics and life history of a geographically restricted seahorse, Hippocampus whitei', Journal Of Fish Biology, vol. 81, no. 4, pp. 1297-1314.
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The aim of this study was to collect data on population dynamics and life history for White's seahorse Hippocampus whitei, a geographically restricted species that is listed as data deficient under the IUCN Red List. Data from H. whitei populations were collected from two regions, Port Stephens (north) and Sydney Harbour (south) in New South Wales, Australia, covering most of the known range of H. whitei, from 2005 to 2010. Over 1000 individuals were tagged using fluorescent elastomer and on subsequent recaptures were re-measured for growth data that were used in a forced Gulland++Holt plot to develop growth parameters for use in a specialized von Bertalanffy growth-function model. Growth parameters for Port Stephens were: females L++ = 149-2 mm and K = 2-034 per year and males L++ = 147-9 mm and K = 2-520 per year compared with estimates from Sydney Harbour: females L++ = 139-8 mm and K = 1-285 per year and males L++ = 141-6 mm and K = 1-223 per year. Whilst there was no significant difference in growth between sexes for each region, H. whitei in Port Stephens grew significantly quicker and larger and matured and reproduced at a younger age than those from Sydney Harbour. The life span of H. whitei is at least 5 years in the wild with six individuals recorded reaching this age. Data collected on breeding pairs found that H. whitei displays life-long monogamy with three pairs observed remaining pair bonded over three consecutive breeding years. Baseline population densities were derived for two Port Stephens' sites (0-035 and 0-110 m++2) and for Manly in Sydney Harbour (1-050 m++2). Even though the life-history parameters of H. whitei suggest it may be reasonably resilient, precaution should be taken in its future management as a result of its limited geographical distribution and increasing pressures from anthropogenic sources on its habitats.
Courtenay, G., Gladstone, W., Scammell, M., Kidson, R. & Wood, J. 2011, 'The influence of estuarine water quality on cover of barnacles and Enteromorpha spp.', Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, vol. 175, no. 1-4, pp. 685-697.
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The influence of ambient water quality on the settlement of barnacles and the green alga Enteromorpha spp. to an artificial substratum in the estuaries of Sydney, Australia, was investigated to test the efficacy of both groups of organisms as indicators of changes in water quality due to urban stormwater runoff and/or sewage overflows. Wooden settlement panels were immersed for 4 months on 17 occasions between 1996 and 2005 at 11 locations known to vary in water-quality parameters (conductivity, total uncombined ammonia, oxidised nitrogen, total nitrogen, filterable phosphorus, total phosphorus, faecal coliforms and chlorophyll-a) and ambient meteorological conditions (total rainfall, maximum rainfall). Water-quality data were collected during the time that the settlement panels were deployed. Cover of barnacles was highly variable among locations (range 1.2+55.2%). Hierarchical partitioning found that chlorophyll-a, total phosphorus and total nitrogen had significant independent positive effects on barnacle cover. Together, these variables explained 26% of the variation in barnacle cover. Mean cover of Enteromorpha spp., however, did not vary significantly among locations suggesting that other potentially more important factors are influencing its settlement and growth. The results of this study suggest that barnacle cover is likely to be a useful indicator of some components of water quality.
Morton, J.K. & Gladstone, W. 2011, 'Spatial, temporal and ontogenetic variation in the association of fishes (family Labridae) with rocky-reef habitats', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 62, no. 7, pp. 870-884.
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Habitat variability is an important factor structuring fish assemblages of rocky reefs in temperate Australia. Accepting the generality of this model requires that habitat-related variation is consistent through time, across multiple spatial scales, and applies to all life-history stages. We used repeated underwater visual surveys at multiple spatial scales over a 22-month period to test whether three distinct rocky-reef habitats had different wrasse assemblages and whether these assemblages were subject to spatial, temporal and ontogenetic variability. Overall, the strongest and most consistent habitat association was with sponge gardens, which had the most distinct assemblage, and the greatest species richness and density of individuals. Habitat associations in fringe and barrens were less consistent. A substantial increase in the abundance of small individuals, coinciding with warmer sea temperatures, contributed to temporal fluctuations in the density of wrasses. Overall, habitats were not strongly partitioned among larger individuals of the most abundant species, suggesting that adults are largely habitat generalists whereas small, recruiting individuals showed greater habitat specialisation. The present study emphasises the importance of incorporating spatial, temporal and ontogenetic variability into surveys of fish assemblages to understand more fully the dynamics of temperate rocky-reef systems
Powter, D.M., Gladstone, W. & Platell, M.E. 2010, 'The influence of sex and maturity on the diet, mouth morphology and dentition of the Port Jackson shark, Heterodontus portusjacksoni', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 61, no. 1, pp. 74-85.
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Dietary studies are essential for an understanding of elasmobranch ecology and their role in marine ecosystems. The diet, head morphology and dentition of Heterodontus portusjacksoni, an abundant, epibenthic shark in the coastal waters of temperate eastern Australia, were examined in 2004+2005. The stomach contents of the juvenile, subadult and adult stages of 136 males and 100 females were examined. Diets were broad (32 prey taxa), but dominated by molluscs, teleosts and cephalopods. Analyses of stomach contents data demonstrated that diet differed significantly by ontogenetic stage, but not by sex. Juveniles and subadults consumed mainly benthic infauna and epifauna, with subadults ingesting greater amounts of diogenid crustaceans, and adult diets dominated by demersal/pelagic prey. Trophic level differed ontogenetically, from secondary consumers as juveniles and subadults to tertiary consumers as adults. The mainly tricuspidate juvenile dentition changed with maturity to a greater proportion of large molariform distal teeth, whereas the snout and jaw lengthened and broadened. Adult males retained a greater proportion of anterior S-family teeth than females, which was most likely related to copulation. The ontogenetic variation in dietary composition, facilitated by differences in dentition and mouth morphology, demonstrated that dietary resources were partitioned ontogenetically.
Powter, D.M. & Gladstone, W. 2009, 'Habitat-mediated use of space by juvenile and mating adult Port Jackson sharks, Heterodontus portusjacksoni, in Eastern Australia', Pacific Science, vol. 63, no. 1, pp. 1-14.
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Studies of spatial ecology of demersal sharks are critical to understanding the significance of habitat variation; however, limited information exists. Spatial ecology of adult Heterodontus portusjacksoni was studied at three locations on the central and southern coast of New South Wales, Australia, from January 2002 to December 2005. Juveniles within a nursery area were studied from December 2002 to December 2005. Tag-recapture, day and night underwater visual census, and acoustic tagging were used. Adults returned annually to the same coastal breeding reefs for up to four consecutive years. Individual juveniles resided within a sea-grass nursery area for at least 2 yr and were not uniformly distributed throughout the nursery. Adult females often sheltered in aggregations in gutters as a male avoidance strategy, and both sexes utilized the sand/reef interface in the absence of gutters. Juveniles aggregated infrequently due to absence of habitat features that mediated aggregation. Acoustic tracks of adults revealed periods of inactivity up to 27 hr. Juveniles spent significant amounts of time inactive, punctuated with short bouts of swimming. Juveniles utilized moderate activity spaces (3,510-583,990 m^sup 2^) centered over a core area of the sea-grass bed but also ranged over much larger areas of the bay. Use of space by H. portusjacksoni is strongly influenced by habitat characteristics throughout its life history.
Shokri, M.R., Gladstone, W. & Jelbart, J. 2009, 'The effectiveness of seahorses and pipefish (Pisces: Syngnathidae) as a flagship group to evaluate the conservation value of estuarine seagrass beds', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, vol. 19, no. 5, pp. 588-595.
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1. Syngnathids (Pisces, Syngnathidae: seahorses and pipefish) were investigated for their use as a flagship group to evaluate the conservation value of estuarine seagrass beds in estuaries in south-east Australia. Some species of syngnathids are listed internationally as vulnerable or endangered, and they are a charismatic group of fish that attracts a high level of public support and sympathy. Syngnathids are also protected in several states of Australia. Conservation of syngnathids might provide coincidental benefits to other species that share their habitats. 2. The effectiveness of syngnathids as a flagship group was assessed by (1) testing for correlations with other fish in species richness, density, assemblage variation, and summed irreplaceability value, and (2) determining the number of species of all other fish coincidentally captured in marine protected areas (MPAs) selected for syngnathids. The study was undertaken in a single estuary (scale: tens of square kilometres) and across multiple estuaries (scale: hundreds of square kilometres). 3. Densities of syngnathids and other fish were correlated only at the scale of multiple estuaries. Species richness and summed irreplaceability of syngnathids and other fish were not spatially correlated. Spatial variations in assemblages of syngnathids and other fish were correlated. MPAs selected for syngnathids included more non-syngnathid species than a random selection of locations. 4. This study provides evidence that ranking the conservation value of seagrass beds on the basis of the density and assemblage variation of syngnathids, and selecting MPAs to represent syngnathid species, will simultaneously benefit other fish. Synganthids are therefore regarded as a useful flagship group for conservation planning.
Shokri, M.R., Gladstone, W. & Kepert, A. 2009, 'Annelids, arthropods or molluscs are suiable as surrogate taxa for selecting conservation reserves in estuaries', Biodiversity and conservation, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 1117-1130.
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The urgent need to conserve aquatic biodiversity and the lack of spatial data on biodiversity has motivated conservation planners and researchers to search for more readily obtainable information that could be used as proxies or surrogates. The surrogate taxon approach shows promise in some aquatic environments (e.g. intertidal) but not others (e.g. coral reefs, temperate rocky reefs). Estuaries are transitional environments at the land+sea junction with a unique biodiversity, but are the most threatened of aquatic environments because of high levels of human use. The comparatively small numbers of conservation reserves means that estuarine biodiversity is poorly protected. Selecting additional conservation reserves within estuaries would be facilitated by the identification of a suitable surrogate that could be used in conservation planning. In one estuary in Southeast Australia, we evaluated separately the effectiveness of annelids, arthropods, and molluscs as surrogates for predicting the species richness, abundance, assemblage variation, and summed irreplaceability of other species and for coincidentally representing other species in networks of conservation reserves selected for each surrogate. Spatial patterns in the species richness and assemblage variation (but not summed irreplaceability) of each surrogate were significantly correlated with the spatial patterns of other species.
Shokri, M.R. & Gladstone, W. 2009, 'Higher taxa are effective surrogates for species in the selection of conservation reserves in estuaries', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, vol. 19, no. 6, pp. 626-636.
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1. The lack of information about marine biodiversity is problematic for the selection of conservation reserves that aim to protect representative samples of biodiversity. A number of surrogate measures for biodiversity have been suggested as a potential solution to this problem. 2. The present study tested the effectiveness of using higher taxa of macroinvertebrates as a surrogate for species-level identification to depict spatial variation in species richness and assemblage variation and to select conservation reserves in one estuary in south-east Australia. 3. Spatial patterns of richness and assemblage variation for species were significantly correlated with patterns defined from genera, families, orders, classes, and phyla with a decline in the magnitude of correlation coefficients from finer to coarser resolutions. A network of reserves selected to include representatives of all phyla, classes, orders, families and genera coincidentally included 54%, 61.7%, 75%, 92.6%, 98.8% species in 8.3%, 13.9%, 17.7%, 44.4% and 58.3% of grid cells, respectively. However, only reserves selected for genera, families and orders performed significantly better than random selection. 4. Percentage of species represented by orders, families and genera in a realistic level of available grid cells for conservation (i.e. 13.9%) were very close ranging between 70 and 73.5%. A factor diminishing the performance of order as surrogate for species richness was related to the difficulty of identifying many macroinvertebrates to the order level. Therefore, it is concluded that genus- and family-level identification is an effective surrogate for species-level identification for conservation planning in estuaries. Copyright 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Morton, J.K., Gladstone, W., Hughes, J.M. & Stewart, J. 2008, 'Comparison of the life histories of three co-occurring wrasses (Teleostei: Labridae) in coastal waters of south-eastern Australia', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 59, no. 7, pp. 560-574.
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Labrids are abundant on temperate rocky reefs yet their life histories are poorly known. Three co-occurring Australian labrids (Ophthalmolepis lineolatus, Notolabrus gymnogenis and Pictilabrus laticlavius) exhibited protogynous hermaphroditism typical of labrids. Juveniles reached sexual maturity at 184 mm total length (TL) (2.1 years) in O. lineolatus, 177 mm TL (1.8 years) in N. gymnogenis and <95 mm TL (<0.9 years) in P. laticlavius. Individuals were sexually active initial phase females until changing to a terminal phase male at 295 mm TL (5.2 years) in O. lineolatus, 273 mm TL (4.5 years) in N. gymnogenis and 138 mm TL (2.0 years) in P. laticlavius. The occurrence of males only at greater lengths and older ages suggests that O. lineolatus and N. gymnogenis are monandrous, whereas P. laticlavius appears to be diandrous. Reproduction was asynchronous among species with reproductive activity peaking in January+March for O. lineolatus, April+October for N. gymnogenis and October+December for P. laticlavius. Sectioned otoliths revealed that O. lineolatus and N. gymnogenis grew rapidly to 300 mm TL (6 years) and P. laticlavius to 180 mm TL (3 years). Longevity was at least 13.8, 9.6 and 4.8 years respectively. These life history data will aid management of these frequently harvested species.
Powter, D.M. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Demographic analysis of the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni in the coastal waters of eastern Australia', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 59, pp. 444-455.
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Demographic analyses are used to assess the status and vulnerability of elasmobranchs but their accuracy is often affected by limited basic biological information. Although the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni (Meyer) is currently not considered at threat, there is insufficient data for eastern Australia to assess this rigorously. The present study determined vital demographic rates of adult and juvenile H. portusjacksoni at four locations on the central and southern coast of New South Wales, Australia from January 2002 to December 2005 using underwater visual census, tag+recapture and samples obtained from a commercial fishery. Natural mortality was low in adults (0.063+0.074 year+1) and juveniles (0.225 year+1), but substantial at the embryonic stage (0.783+0.896 year+1). Adult growth rates (31.4+32.7 mm year+1) were slightly less than that of juveniles (36.8+37.5 mm year+1). Males at both stages grew slightly faster than females. However, H. portusjacksoni had slower growth rates than many other elasmobranch species. Having a low intrinsic rate of increase (r = 0.069 year+1), long generation times (1 = 22.5 year) and a low rebound potential, adults are the stage with the greatest impact on population growth. Hence, their life history strategy makes them susceptible to serious decline under exploitation, and management should strive to maintain the adult reproductive stock as a priority.
Morton, J.K., Platell, M.E. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Differences in feeding ecology among three co-occurring species of wrasse (Teleostei: Labridae) on rocky reefs of temperate Australia', Marine Biology, vol. 154, no. 3, pp. 577-592.
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The foraging behaviours and dietary compositions of three co-occurring labrids (Ophthalmolepis lineolatus, Notolabrus gymnogenis and Pictilabrus laticlavius), which are conspicuous on rocky reefs in temperate south-eastern Australia, were investigated between 2003 and 2005. SCUBA observations at two locations showed that the feeding intensity, and hence the associated effects of these fishes on rocky reef invertebrate prey, was temporally consistent. Relative differences in the contributions of ingested prey and use of different feeding microhabitats demonstrated that the feeding ecology differed significantly among the three species. Thus, O. lineolatus fed on proportionately higher volumes of polychaetes, polyplacophorans, marginellid gastropods (especially Austroginella sp.), bivalves and echinoids, which were sighted opportunistically in a wide selection of microhabitats, but particularly in sand/rubble. Ambush hunting was used regularly by smaller N. gymnogenis and all sizes of P. laticlavius to forage on amphipods, small decapods and small gastropods at algal bases or fronds and Diopatra dentata tubes. Amphipods were similarly important in the diet of smaller O. lineolatus.
Powter, D.M. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Embryonic mortality and predation on egg capsules of the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni (Meyer)', Journal Of Fish Biology, vol. 72, no. 3, pp. 573-584.
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Egg capsules of the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni were examined during underwater visual census surveys at two sites in New South Wales, Australia, during the 2002+2005 reproductive seasons (austral winter). Embryonic mortality was high (0783+0896 per annum) with the majority (992%) resulting from predation. The crested horn shark Heterodontus galeatus and common tent shell Astralium tentoriformis (Gastropoda, Turbinidae) were positively identified as egg predators. Gastropod predation was insignificant, accounting for only 20 and 21% of total mortality at Terrigal Haven and Dent Rock, respectively. Most capsules appeared to have been depredated by large predatory fishes with the eastern blue groper Achoerodus viridis (Labridae) and the black stingray Dasyatis thetidis (Dasyatidae) as possible candidate predators. The rate of embryonic mortality in H. portusjacksoni is higher than that reported for other oviparous elasmobranchs. This high level of mortality has significant consequences for the conservation and management of this species, especially when combined with an understanding of their low fecundity, late maturity and protracted reproductive life.
Chivers, W.J., Gladstone, W. & Herbert, R.D. 2008, 'Spatial effects in an individual-based model of the interaction of species at different trophic levels', Natural Resource Modeling, vol. 21, no. 1, pp. 72-92.
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In this paper, we describe an individual-based model of the interaction between a producer and herbivore species. The interaction occurs in a 2-dimensional matrix of individual cells. The producer organism grows in the cells and the herbivores move between the cells, towards areas of high concentration of producer. Herbivores may die of starvation or they may reproduce asexually. The model is not built to represent a specific existing system but is a parsimonious generalized model of producer+herbivore interaction designed to test spatial effects.
Powter, D.M. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Habitat preferences of Port Jackson Sharks, Heterodontus portusjacksoni, in the coastal waters of Eastern Australia', Proceedings Of The Linnean Society Of New South Wales, vol. 129, pp. 151-165.
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The habitat preferences of juvenile and adult Heterodontus portusjacksoni and ovipositing females were determined from three locations on the central and southern coast of New South Wales. Adults use shallow coastal rocky reefs in July-November for mating and oviposition, whilst juveniles occupy a seagrass nursery in a large coastal embayment. The sand/reef interface on the lee side of reefs was preferred by both sexes, probably as a refuge against strong water movements. Adult females also preferred rocky gutters when available, possibly as a male avoidance strategy. Preferred oviposition sites were narrow, shallow crevices (single capsules) or deep, narrow crevices (multiple capsules) which afforded protection against mechanical dislocation and/or predation. Juveniles exhibited a strong preference for the seagrass bed edge within a shallow nursery area. The visual complexity of this habitat combined with the juvenile's disruptive colouration may provide a refuge from predation, whilst proximity to the seagrass may provide ease of access for foraging. At a large scale, juveniles preferred areas of moderate slope within the nursery that provided protection from strong water movement. This study highlights the need for quantitative studies addressing habitat preferences and a consideration of use-specific factors to fully understand the selection of habitat by elasmobranchs
Powter, D.M. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'The reproductive biology and ecology of the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni in the coastal waters of eastern Australia', Journal Of Fish Biology, vol. 72, no. 10, pp. 2615-2633.
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The reproductive biology and ecology of the Port Jackson shark Heterodontus portusjacksoni was investigated at three locations on the central and southern coast of New South Wales (NSW), Australia from January 2002 to December 2005 using underwater visual census surveys and samples obtained from a commercial fishery. Adults displayed sexual dimorphism in total length (LT) at sexual maturity, with males maturing between 762 and 772 mm LT and females between 902 and 905 mm LT. The mean ovarian fecundity was estimated at 16 offspring per female but was unrelated to female LT. Male gonado-somatic (IG) and hepato-somatic (IH) indices and female IG declined from July to November as did maximum ovarian follicle diameter and the diameter of the three largest follicles. Adults were absent from inshore reefs between December and July. Hence, H. portusjacksoni has a synchronous annual breeding season in NSW, which occurs between July and November (the austral winter to spring), with a peak in oviposition from August to October. Heterodontus portusjacksoni copulatory and ovipository behaviour are reported for the first time. Copulation was observed and involved oral grasping of the female+s pectoral fin by a single male, which wrapped his body around hers to insert one clasper. Ovipositing females appeared to search crevices in the reef prior to delivering a single capsule, which was washed into the crevice by water movement, with the female departing very soon after oviposition. This study represents the first rigorously quantitative analysis of H. portusjacksoni reproductive biology and ecology in NSW waters
Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Towards conservation of a globally significant ecosystem: the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 1-5.
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The Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (RSGA) are renowned for their unique marine and coastal environments and species. An extreme pace of unmanaged development and a severe shortage of technical and conservation expertise threatened these globally important conservation values. Spurred to action, a period of intense activity in marine conservation, training and science by individual nations, the region, and the international donor community began in 1995. Many gains were made in marine environmental and resource management, however, this overview is con?ned to marine conservation. Marine conservation in the RSGA highlights the need for the most basic foundations to be laid by building political support and understanding, growing technical and management expertise, gathering relevant scienti?c information, and addressing the socioeconomic issues that threaten conservation values. The primary sources for much of the information presented here can be found in PERSGA (2006)
Momtaz, S. & Gladstone, W. 2008, 'Ban on commercial fishing in the estuarine waters of New South Wales, Australia: Community consultation and social impacts', Environmental Impact Assessment Review, vol. 28, no. 2-3, pp. 214-225.
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In its effort to resolve the conflict between commercial and recreational fishers the New South Wales (NSW) government (NSW Fisheries) banned commercial fishing in the estuarine waters. The NSW Fisheries conducted a number of studies and held meetings with the affected communities including commercial fishers prior to the implementation of the ban. To investigate how community consultation played a role in the decision-making process especially as perceived by the commercial fishers and to determine actual social impacts of the ban on commercial fishers, in-depth interviews were conducted with the commercial fishers. This research reveals that despite the NSW Fisheries' consultations with commercial fishers prior to the closure, the latter were confused about various vital aspects of the decision. It further reveals that, the commercial fishers faced a number of significant changes as a result of this decision. We argue that a better decision-making process and outcome would have been possible through a meaningful consultation with the commercial fishers and a social impact assessment.
Janes, A.R., Gladstone, W. & Hacking, N.J. 2007, 'Australian sandy-beach ecosystems and climate change: ecology and management', Australian Zoologist, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 190-201.
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Despite their great socio-economic importance, sandy beaches have attracted little ecological research. This is unfortunate since, contrary to popular belief, they support diverse ecological assemblages whose species are mostly small and buried and which deserve protection as part of ecologically sustainable development (ESD). Moreover, the management of beaches and linked adjacent ecosystems is becoming increasingly important because of their vulnerability to burgeoning human pressures including climate change. Although there are large uncertainties involved, some of the climate-related environmental changes and their ecological consequences for sandy beaches are explored in this paper, some management issues discussed and research proposed.Temperature-related changes include the likelihood that the geographical ranges of some species will change, some cool-adapted species will decline in abundance, possibly to extinction, and the rate of processes such as decomposition and photosynthesis will increase. The increasing acidification of the ocean may affect many beach species directly via reduced calcification and indirectly via changes to the phytoplankton on which some beach species depend for food.
Gladstone, W. 2007, 'Requirements for marine protected areas to conserve the biodiversity of rocky reef fishes', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, vol. 17, pp. 71-87.
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This study describes spatial patterns in the biodiversity (species, assemblages) of rocky reef fishes at a spatial scale relevant to management, and compared the outcomes for this biodiversity from alternative procedures for selecting marine protected areas (MPAs) and from the selection of MPAs for fisheries-related objectives. 2. The study area included 104 species in two assemblage types; 36 species and 14 species occurred only in one or two locations respectively. 3. MPAs selected by hotspot richness, greedy richness complementarity, and summed irreplaceability included similar percentages of species and signi?cantly more species than randomly selected MPAs. A combined species-assemblage selection ensured representation of assemblage diversity. Representation of all species and assemblage types required 92% of locations. 4. MPAs chosen using density of all fishes or density of exploitable ?shes as selection criteria included fewer species (than MPAs selected using species identity) and the percentage of species accumulated did not di?er from a random selection. 5. Use of an established MPA as the seed for an expanded network was inefficient, leading to additional locations being required and an accumulation of species that did not di?er from a random selection. 6. The smallest MPA network that fulfilled multiple management objectives (representation of assemblage diversity and majority of species, population viability, support for fisheries, connectivity) required 30% of the surveyed locations
Gladstone, W. 2007, 'Temporal patterns of spawning and hatching in a spawning aggregation of the temperate reef fish Chromis hypsilepis (Pomacentridae)', Marine Biology, vol. 151, no. 3, pp. 1143-1152.
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Descriptions of temporal patterns in the reproduction of damselfishes (family Pomacentridae) and adaptive hypotheses for these patterns are derived mostly from studies of coral reef species. It is unclear whether the types of temporal patterns and the explanatory power of the adaptive hypotheses are applicable to damselfishes of temperate rocky reefs. This study tested hypotheses about the existence of lunar spawning cycles, the diel timing of hatching, and the synchronization of temporal patterns in hatching and tides in the schooling planktivorous damselfish Chromis hypsilepis on a rocky reef in New South Wales, Australia. Reproductive behaviour was observed daily for 223 days between August 2004 and March 2005. C. hypsilepis formed large spawning aggregations of 3,575+33,075 individuals. Spawning occurred at a uniform rate throughout the day on a semi-lunar cycle. The greatest number of spawnings occurred 1 day after the new moon and 1 day before the full moon. The cost to males from brood care was an 85% reduction in their feeding rate. The semi-lunar spawning cycle may be an outcome of the use of the lunar cue to synchronize the aggregation for spawning of widely dispersed individuals and the need for males to recuperate after brooding. Eggs hatched 3+7 h after sunset following a 4.5-day incubation period. This study provides no support for hypotheses that link temporal patterns in hatching with particular tidal regimes believed to facilitate early survival of larvae and their dispersal. The result that hatching occurred over the tidal cycle was due to the rapid off-reef dispersal of larvae from the spawning ground at all stages of the tide. C. hypsilepis is similar to other planktivorous damselfishes in its semi-lunar spawning cycle, cost of brood care, and protracted diel spawning regime. It differs in its lengthy period of hatching and its breeding in spawning aggregations, believed to be rare among demersally spawning fishes.
Chivers, W.J., Herbert, R.D. & Gladstone, W. 2007, 'Within-generational and diversity-dependent effects in an individual-based model of predator-prey interaction', Natural Resource Modeling, vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 405-413.
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In this paper we report the use of an individual-based model of predator-prey interaction to explore the effects of +within generational+ and `between generational+ updating of a system level variable. We also report the importance of diversity within the simulated populations. Our findings support those of Grimm and Uchmnski [1994] in regard to the importance of the timing of system level variables, and support Grimm and Uchmaski and others in regard to the importance of the level of diversity across the population. The significance of these findings is emphasized by the fundamental differences between our model and that of Grimm and Uchmnski in regard to the assumptions made about resource flow in the system.
Gladstone, W. 2007, 'Selection of a spawning aggregation site by Chromis hypsilepis (Pisces: Pomacentridae): habitat structure, transport potential, and food availability', Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol. 351, pp. 235-247.
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Spawning aggregations form when fishes migrate to a site from their normal feeding grounds and form temporary groupings for breeding. Spawning aggregation sites are spatially rare, and demonstrating differences between a spawning aggregation site and unselected sites nearby is the first step towards understanding the benefits provided by the aggregation site. Chromis hypsilepis (Pomacentridae) is a demersally spawning reef fish, one population of which reproduces in a large, single aggregation at a rocky reef off the central coast of New South Wales, Australia. This study compared the habitat structure (rugosity, reef slope, substratum particle size, and abundance of preferred spawning microhabitat) of the spawning aggregation site and several non-spawning sites, and tested the hypotheses that the spawning aggregation site provided greater off-reef larval transport and prey availability for brooding males. Substratum rugosity was significantly greater and the preferred spawning microhabitat was significantly more abundant at the spawning aggregation site. Reef relief and substratum particle size were not significantly different from non-spawning sites. Passively drifting surface current drogues released at the spawning aggregation site were more rapidly transported off the reef, but did not travel further or faster, than drogues released at a non-spawning site over a 12 h period. Biomass of the preferred prey (copepods of 0.441 to 1.49 mm equivalent spherical diameter) was not significantly greater, but was less variable, at the spawning aggregation site
Malcolm, H.A., Gladstone, W., Lindfield, S., Wraith, J. & Lynch, T.P. 2007, 'Spatial and temporal variation in reef fish assemblages of marine parks in New South Wales, Australia - baited video observations', Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol. 350, pp. 277-290.
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Baited remote underwater video stations (BRUVS) were used to examine variation in assemblages of reef fishes at scales of 100s of kilometres (between 3 marine parks in New South Wales, Australia) and kilometres (between 4 sites within each park). Temporal variation over 5 yr was also examined in 1 park (Solitary Islands). BRUVS were able to sample the relative abundance and distribution of species from a wide range of trophic groups, and were particularly effective for detecting cryptic predators. Significant variability in the fish assemblages occurred between each park consistent with the latitudinal distribution of the parks. Fish assemblages also varied significantly between sites within each park. Contrary to expectations, total species richness did not follow the expected latitudinal gradient. However, observed geographical patterns in species richness of certain families such as Labridae (greater richness in the most northern park) and Monacanthidae (greater species richness in southern parks) followed expectations. Abundant schooling species, common to all 3 parks, were important contributors to variation between sites. Temporal variation over 5 yr at 1 park was relatively minor compared to the spatial variation among the 3 parks. This suggests large-scale spatial separation is more important for structuring fish assemblages than time. A network of marine parks will therefore be required to represent variation in reef fish assemblages over this latitudinal scale.
Carraro, R. & Gladstone, W. 2006, 'Habitat preferences and site fidelity of the ornate wobbegong shark (Orectolobus ornatus) on rocky reefs of New South Wales', Pacific Science, vol. 60, no. 2, pp. 207-223.
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Habitat and microhabitat preferences and site fidelity of Orectolobus ornatus were assessed between September 2002 and August 2003 to assess potential suitability of marine reserves for its conservation. Of six rocky reef habitats available in the study area (sponge gardens, artificial structures, barren boulders, sand, sea grass, macroalgae), O. ornatus exhibited a significant preference for sponge gardens, artificial structures, and barren boulders habitats. Habitat preferences of males and females, and individuals <1 m and >1 m, did not differ. Orectolobus ornatus selected daytime resting positions with a high topographic complexity and crevice volume and did not select on the basis of prey availability. Habitat and microhabitat preferences may be related to the need for predator avoidance. Regular monitoring of 40 individually identified O. ornatus revealed that none was a permanent resident of the study area. Seven individuals exhibited short-term temporary fidelity to the study area; they were resighted frequently for part of an intensive 100-day survey. Remaining individuals were temporary visitors; they were resighted at most once after initial identification or returning after extended absences. Monthly population surveys confirmed the turnover of O. ornatus in the study area. The lack of long-term site fidelity suggests that small marine reserves will be ineffective as a conservation strategy for O. ornatus.
Gladstone, W., Stanger, R. & Phelps, L. 2006, 'A participatory approach to university teaching about partnerships for biodiversity conservation', Australian Journal of Environmental Education, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 21-32.
Loss of biodiversity and habitats is one of the greatest threats to the environment and education has a critical role to play in addressing this issue. This paper describes a teaching activity for first-year university students studying sustainable resource management at the University of Newcastle which established a partnership between education, government and the community to rehabilitate a nature reserve where biodiversity values were threatened by weed invasion. Students research the problem (weed invasion), quantitatively assess the impacts of weed invasion and management interventions, and work alongside a community-based bushcare group and government agency during on-ground rehabilitation of the reserve. Key outcomes for students have been knowledge and skills relevant to a critical issue for the Australian environment; a more optimistic attitude towards environmental issues and their potential to develop solutions; a positive perspective about the role of community involvement; continued participation in community bushcare groups outside the classroom; and personal involvement in solving a critical environmental issue
Gladstone, W., Hacking, N.J. & Owen, V. 2006, 'Effects of artificial openings of intermittently opening estuaries on macroinvertebrate assemblages of the entrance barrier', Estuarine Coastal And Shelf Science, vol. 67, no. 4, pp. 708-720.
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Gladstone, W., Stanger, R. & Phelps, L. 2006, 'A participatory approach to university teaching about partnerships for biodiversity conservation', Australian Journal of Environmental Education, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 21-31.
Courtenay, G.C., Gladstone, W. & Schreider, M. 2005, 'Assessing the reponse of estuarine intertidal assemblages to urbanised catchment discharge', Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, vol. 107, no. 1-3, pp. 375-398.
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Measurement of intertidal rock assemblages was investigated as a potential biological indicator to provide a quantitative estimate of the impact of urbanised catchment discharge on the estuaries of Sydney, Australia, from 1995 to 1999. Based on the presence and characteristics of adjacent human activities, sampling locations were categorised as: Bush; Urban; Urban with Sewer Overflows; and Industry with Sewer Overflows. In Sydney Harbour, variation in assemblage structure was measured between most impact categories, however differences between impact categories were not consistent for each year. Nevertheless, in years of above average rainfall (1998+1999), reference assemblages adjacent to national parks and distant from urbanisation were different to all other putatively impacted assemblages.
Boissonneault, M.F., Gladstone, W., Scott, P. & Cushing, N. 2005, 'Grey nurse shark human interactions and portrayals: a study of newspaper portrayals of the grey nurse shark from 1969-2003', Electronic green journal, vol. 22, no. 1, pp. 1-15.
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The article presents information on a study that consists of a content analysis of 41 Australian newspaper articles pertaining specifically to the grey nurse shark and serves to deconstruct the explicit messages that they attempt to convey to their readers. The data generated by this study exemplify the perceptions of Carcharias taurus as represented by major Australian newspapers between the years 1969 and 2003. The term agenda-setting refers to the creation of public awareness and concern for issues that are reported by the news media. The fundamental basis for research on agenda-setting is to recognize that the media is not a reflection of reality but rather filters and shapes reality, and the focus that the media places on specific issues leads the public to perceive "those" issues as more important than others. In a 1997 study entitled "Changing Attitudes Toward California Cougars," Jennifer R. Wolch and Unna Lassiter of the University of Southern California along with Andrea Gullo of the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority in Los Angeles analyzed the impact that the newspaper media had on attitudes and understandings that the public had developed towards the California Cougar.
Gladstone, W. & Alexander, T. 2005, 'A test of the higher-taxon approach in the identification of candidate sites for marine reserves', Biodiversity and conservation, vol. 14, no. 13, pp. 3151-3168.
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Alternatives to species-level identification have been advocated as one solution to the problem of selecting marine reserves with limited information on the distribution of marine biodiversity.This study evaluated the effects on selection of candidate sites for marine reserves from using the higher-taxon approach as a surrogate for species-level identification of intertidal molluscs and rocky reef fishes. These effects were evaluated by determining the percentage of species included in candidate reserves identified from genus-, family- and order-level data by a complementarity-based reserve selection algorithm, and by testing for correlations between the irreplaceability values of locations. Candidate reserves identified from genus- and family-level data of intertidal molluscs included a similar percentage of all species as the reserves identified from species-level data. Candidate reserves selected from genus- and family-level data of rocky reef fishes included, respectively, 3+7% and 14+23% fewer species than reserves selected from species-level data.
Gladstone, W. & Schreider, M. 2003, 'Effects of pruning a temperature mangrove forest on the associated assemblages of macroinvertebrates', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 54, pp. 683-690.
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Mangrove forests around the world are being impacted by development in adjacent land and water areas. An after-control-impact study was undertaken to assess the effects of mangrove forest pruning on the associated benthic macroinvertebrate fauna. Pruning, undertaken 5 years before our sampling period, reduced the height of the forest canopy from 5 m to 1 m. Macrobenthic assemblages were sampled in September 2000 and January 2001 from two randomly selected sites within the pruned section of forest, and two sites in each of two control locations in the same forest. Assemblage composition in the pruned and undisturbed mangrove forests was not significantly different, nor were there significant differences in variability between the two areas. Similarity matrices for assemblages based on higher taxonomic groups and molluscs were highly correlated with similarity matrices for all taxa, indicating the utility of more rapid forms of assessment in this habitat. The results suggest that although short-term impacts may have occurred, no impact on macroinvertebrate assemblages was evident 5 years after the pruning.
Gladstone, W. & davis, j. 2003, 'Reduced survey intensity and its consequences for marine reserve selection', Biodiversity and conservation, vol. 12, no. 7, pp. 1525-1536.
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There has been much interest in the potential of short-cuts in biodiversity surveys (e.g. physical surrogates, indicator groups, and lower taxonomic resolution) in systematic processes to select networks of representative marine reserves. This study tested the consequences for reserve selection of reducing survey intensity in intertidal rocky shores in southeast Australia. Using a reference data set of species'' distributions based on surveys of two replicate sites in each of 15 locations, a reduction in survey intensity was simulated by randomly eliminating the data from one of the replicate sites in each location. A complementarity-based reserve selection algorithm was used to determine the number of locations required to represent all species once in a reserve network and the irreplaceability value of locations. A reduction in survey intensity led to increases in: the size of reserve networks (of between 8 and 17%); the irreplaceability value of locations; and the number of irreplaceable locations. These changes were caused by a reduction in the observed range sizes of species in the data sets simulating a reduced survey intensity.
Gladstone, W., Krupp, F. & Younis, M. 2003, 'Development and management of a network of marine protected areas in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden region', Ocean & Coastal Management, vol. 46, pp. 741-761.
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Gladstone, W. 2002, 'The potential value of indicator groups in the selection of marine reserves', Biological Conservation, vol. 104, pp. 211-220.
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Gladstone, W. 2002, 'Fisheries of the Farasan Islands (Red Sea)', Naga, WorldFish Center Quarterly, vol. 25, pp. 30-34.
Gladstone, W. 2000, 'The ecological and social basis for management of a Red Sea marine-protected area', Ocean & Coastal Management, vol. 43, pp. 1015-1032.
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Gladstone, W., Tawiq, N., Nasr, D., Andersen, I., Cheung, C., Drammeh, H., Krupp, F. & Lintner, S. 1999, 'Sustainable use of renewable resources and conservation in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden: issues, needs and strategic actions', Ocean & Coastal Management, vol. 42, pp. 671-697.
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Gladstone, W. 1996, 'Unique annual aggregation of longnose parrotfish (Hipposcarus harid) at Farasan Island (Saudi Arabia, Red Sea)', Copeia, vol. 1996, no. 2, pp. 483-485.
Gladstone, W. 1994, 'Lek-like spawning, parental care and mating periodicity of the triggerfish Pseudobalistes flavimarginatus (Balistidae)', Environmental Biology Of Fishes, vol. 39, pp. 249-257.
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Gladstone, W. & Dight, I.J. 1994, 'Torres Strait baseline study', Marine Pollution Bulletin, vol. 29, no. 1-3, pp. 121-125.
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Gladstone, W. 1992, 'Observations of Crown-of-thorns starfish spawning', Marine and Freshwater Research, vol. 43, pp. 535-537.
St John, J., Russ, G. & Gladstone, W. 1990, 'Accuracy and bias of visual estimates of numbers, size structure and biomass of a coral reef fish', Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol. 64, no. 1, pp. 253-262.
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Stroud, G.J., Goldman, B. & Gladstone, W. 1989, 'Laval development, growth and age determination in the Sharpnose Pufferfish Canthigaster valentini (Teleostei: Tetraodontidae)', Japanese Journal of Ichthyology, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 327-337.
Gladstone, W. & Westoby, M. 1988, 'Growth and reproduction in Canthigaster valentini (Pisces, Tetraodontidae): a comparison of a toxic reef fish with other reef fishes', Environmental Biology Of Fishes, vol. 21, pp. 207-222.
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Gladstone, W. 1988, 'Killer whale feeding observed underwater', Journal of Mammalogy, vol. 69, pp. 629-630.
Gladstone, W. 1987, 'The courtship and spawning behaviors of Cunthigaster valentini (Tetraodontidae)', Environmental Biology Of Fishes, vol. 20, pp. 225-261.
Gladstone, W. 1987, 'Role of female territoriality in social and mating systems of Canthigaster valentini (Pisces: Tetraodontidae): evidence from field experiments', Marine Biology, vol. 96, pp. 185-191.
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Sharpnose puffers, Canthigaster valentini (Pisces: Tetraodontidae) at Lizard Island, Australia, live in made-dominated haremic social and mating systems. The hypothesis was that mature females are restricted in their movements and can be monopolized by some males. Field experiments at Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, between January and March 1983 showed that mature females were still territorial in the absence of males and movements of females were not controlled by males. Males abandoned their territories when their females were removed. The territorial behavior of those males with access to females (territorial males) restricted the access of other males (bachelor males) to them. Bachelor males took over harems and became territorial males when established territorial males were removed. The results of the experiments thus supported the hypothesis.
Gladstone, W. 1987, 'The eggs and larvae of the sharpnose pufferfish Canthigaster valentini (Pisces Tetraodontidae) are unpalatable to other reef fishes', Copeia, vol. 1987, pp. 227-230.
Gladstone, W. 1986, 'Spawning behavior of the Bumphead Parrotfish Bolbometopon muricatum at Yonge Reef, Great Barrier Reef', Japanese Journal of Ichthyology, vol. 33, pp. 326-328.

Major Reviews

Gladstone, W. 2002, 'The Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden', PERSGA Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Other research activity

Voyer, M., Gladstone, W. & Goodall, H. 2014, 'Understanding marine park opposition: the relationship between social impacts, environmental knowledge and motivation to fish', Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, John Wiley & Sons, United Kingdom.
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