Project Members:

Craig Johnson (Project Lead)

Vanessa Lucieer (Spatial Data Manager)

Peter Walsh (Project Manager)

Roger Proctor (Project Manager)

Emma Flukes (Data Services Administrator)

Claire Butler (Spatial Data Analyst)

ANDS Contact:

Katherine Tattersall (

Project Status:


SeaMap Australia - Benthic Marine Habitats on the Australian Continental Shelf

University of Tasmania

Collaborator(s): IMOS, AODN

Project Description

There has been significant investment to collect seabed habitat data around the nation by each State and Territory in the last decade. The NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub (NMBH) ( is extracting and collating this spatial data for reef habitats on the continental shelf. The ‘reefs spatial data product’ will be made available through the AODN via the IMOS or IMAS portals. IMAS have created a spatial analyst position in the NMBH at IMAS to facilitate this.

Over the last 4-5 years, both an interest in and a need for national scale marine spatial data has grown. Projects like SeaMap Tasmania, RedMap and Reef Life Survey have now generated awareness of what can be made possible when spatial data is made publically available. These highly valued data assets add to the NMBH-funded activity by allowing for cross disciplinary research and commercial values to be explored by the national marine community.
This project would:

1. Bring all of the spatial data on benthic marine habitats on the Australian continental shelf together in the one database, produce a compiled data product and make this layer available through AODN.
2. Based on this project and the relevant outputs from NMBH Project D3, establish a controlled vocabulary and associated governance for national classification of marine habitats.
3. Complement this data with BRUVs, AUV, Reef Life Survey and other spatial marine data sets, and possibly other sources.
4. Upgrade the SeaMap website for a national focus and provide information and support for tools and data services that make it easier to exploit the data and maximise data reuse.

The project will make the resulting data collection(s) available via AODN, with metadata records in Research Data Australia, in accordance with the Force 11 FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, and re-usable) Data Principles.

To the project team’s knowledge, no nation has yet accomplished this at this level.