Completed Research Projects

We undertake a wide variety of projects exploring the interactions between salmon farming and the environment

The Salmon Interactions Team undertakes a wide variety of research projects to better understand the Tasmanian coastal environment, society and the way they interact with salmon aquaculture.

All of our projects incorporate a wide variety of skills and expertise from data collection, data analysis, interpretation and write up – making these a real team effort.

For a list of our current projects, click here

For more information on individual completed projects please follow the links below.

Completed Projects

Sense-T stage 2: sensing Macquarie Harbour

This Sense-T project brought together the Tasmanian Salmonid Growers' Association, IMAS and CSIRO to collect and analyse data from salmon farms in Macquarie Harbour. Sensors were attached to individual 'sentinel' fish in pens in addition to sensors in the environment. Data was collected on fish behaviour as well as environmental conditions such as water temperature, […]

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Characterisation of sediments in Port Esperance

This project aimed to determine whether salmon aquaculture contributes to sedimentation on reefs in areas where they co-occur and to determine what analyses and methods might be most appropriate for detecting fish farm signatures. For more information, you can read the final report: The contribution of salmon farming material to sediment accumulation on reefs in […]

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Aquaculture-community futures: North West Tasmania

In order to secure the future of Australian aquaculture, it is increasingly clear that, alongside effective and responsible production, building and maintaining community support is vital. The Tasmanian salmon industry is acutely aware of the need to garner and maintain societal support. A number of factors contribute towards the achievement of community acceptability (or social […]

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Derwent Estuary Program reef monitoring

In 2019, the Derwent Estuary Program (DEP) engaged IMAS to assess the functional status of inshore temperate reef ecosystems within the Derwent estuary.   The project was intended as a starting point to better understand how rocky reefs change over time and as a result of different pressures within the environment. Within the context of the planned expansion of salmon farming in Storm Bay the aim […]

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From global ideals to local realities – the foundations of sustainability

The focus of this project was the development of robust indicators for social, economic and environmental aspects of sustainability in aquaculture. A vast number of standards and indicators have been developed worldwide, however little is known about the use of these indicators, nor what aspects are missing/contradictory/overlapping/ inadequate. It is these aspects that this project […]

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Determinants of socially-supported fisheries and aquaculture

Project No: FRDC 2017/158 Societal support is of great importance for developing successful fisheries and aquaculture industries, but how to gain support is less well understood. The purpose of this project was to explore existing learnings to better understand societal support in the context of fisheries and aquaculture and present the findings to industry in […]

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Macquarie Harbour dissolved oxygen assessment

Dissolved oxygen within the water column is an important variable in Macquarie Harbour. This project was set up to collate and check Environmental Protection Agency Tasmania and industry monitoring data; to analyse historical time series of bottom water dissolved oxygen, salinity and temperature; to assist with analysis of factors related to bottom water dissolved oxygen […]

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Understanding the ecology of Dorvilleid Polychaetes in Macquarie Harbour

Project No: FRDC 2014/038 Farming salmon in Macquarie Harbour has highlighted a number of challenges over the years. The purpose of this project was to better understand the response of the environment to salmon farming by exploring the response of an environmental indicator (Dorvilleid polychaetes) to farming in the harbour. In the first part of […]

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Movement, habitat utilisation and population status of the endangered Maugean skate and implications for fishing and aquaculture operations in Macquarie Harbour

Project No: FRDC 2013/008 This project aimed to further explore the spatial distribution and ecology of the Maugean Skate, a species only known to exist in two estuarine systems located on the west coast of Tasmania (Macquarie Harbour and Bathurst Harbour).  For more details on this project go to the final report: Movement, habitat utilisation […]

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An evaluation of the options for expansion of salmonid aquaculture in Tasmanian waters

Project No: FRDC 2011/735  This project provides a decision support approach which provides guidance for the identification of the types (and sources) of information that would be needed to support an aquaculture development application in the coastal zone. The project also provides a framework for presentation and analysis of the resultant information such that it […]

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Characterising benthic pelagic interactions in Macquarie Harbour - organic matter processing in sediments and the importance for nutrient dynamics

Project No: FRDC 2012/047  The objective of this project was to examine the relationship between nutrient flux rates, nutrient pathways and also sediment and water variables in Macquarie Harbour in relation to salmon fish farming to help create an ecologically sustainable fish farming practice. The information and data obtained from this project was used to […]

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Assessment of the environmental impacts and sediment remediation potential associated with copper contamination from antifouling paint and associated recommendations for management

Project No: FRDC 2011/041  There were three main aims of this study:   1) to identify the effect of existing sediment copper concentrations and recommend management guidelines;  2) to identify whether there is the “potential” for sediment copper load to decline (“recover”) and to determine the factors affecting recovery rate: identifying key environmental and ecological factors […]

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Evaluation of approaches to improve sediment remediation (rate and function) under salmonid fish cages

Project No: FRDC 2010/063  This project provides a review and ranking of possible  options for active sediment remediation under Tasmanian conditions, and then tested the viability of selected options in the lab and in the field. 

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A whole of ecosystem assessment of environmental issues for salmonid aquaculture

Project No: CRC Project 4.2(2)/ FRDC Project 2004/074  The purpose of this project was to better understand the marine systems at play within the Huon Estuary and D’Entrecasteaux Channel in relation to environmental issues for salmon aquaculture.  For further information on this project go to the final report: A whole of ecosystem assessment of environmental […]

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Planning for a blue future salmon – informing R&D, regulation and industry development

The Tasmanian salmon industry has a vision for safe and sustainable growth in production over the next two decades, while increasing tangible benefits to the Tasmanian community. To support this development, scientists, industry, regulators and non-government organisations collaborated to draft an integrated roadmap for the future of the industry: The Report from the Global Salmon […]

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Development of novel methods for the assessment of sediment condition and determination of management protocols for sustainable finfish cage aquaculture Operations

Project No: Aquafin CRC project 4.1/ FRDC 2000/164  The purpose of this project was to develop new environmental monitoring methods for evaluating the level of sediment degradation in association with finfish cage aquaculture in south east Tasmania. Using these methods, the aim was to explore ways of incorporating these techniques into farm management protocols in […]

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Acknowledgment of Country
We acknowledge the palawa/pakana and Gadigal/Wangal people, the traditional custodians of the land and sea upon which we live and work, and their enduring cultures and knowledge of our oceans and coasts.

We recognise that decisions and practices affecting the future of Indigenous education and research are vital to the self-determination, wellbeing and livelihood of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and to shaping the Australian society in which we live.
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