About the theme


This summary outlines the major findings of a series of 8 individual laboratory-based experiments, written as 5 different reports (Project 4.6.1–4.6.5), which were designed to examine cause-effect pathways, and where possible establish dose response relationships for multiple coral species.

The exposure conditions used in these studies were based on the recent detailed studies of spatial and temporal patterns of dredging plumes from several large scale capital dredging projects (Fisher et al. 2015, Jones et al. 2015). The studies were conducted in parallel with, and designed to support and aid in the interpretation of the water quality guidelines developed from an in situ investigation of coral health during a capital dredging program (Fisher et al. 2017).


  • To provide insights into the cause-effect pathways of turbidity for three species of coral; Acropora millepora, Porites spp. and Montipora capricornis
  • To  determine viable indicators of stress, and guide the development of future experiments to determine appropriate concentration-response relationships for management purposes.
  • to understand the response thresholds, and time-course of the response, of high light adapted adult and juvenile corals, and CCA, to extended periods of low light relevant to conditions generated by offshore dredging
  • To examine the consequences of coral bleaching on the tolerance of corals to poor water quality associated with dredging
  • To examine the short-term self-cleaning capabilities of a range of coral species.


Program: Dredging Science Program

Location: Pilbara and Kimberley

Theme Leader: Ross Jones, AIMS


Final Report