Rachael has over 20 years of experience working as a wetland scientist within the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. Rachael's research area is in wetland landscapes where she uses satellite remote sensing to detect wetland responses in the large inland floodplain wetlands of the Murray-Darling Basin.
Rachael will be talking about how she uses remote sensing to understand the floodplain vegetation in response to flooding in the Macquarie Marshes. This is a large floodplain wetland within the semi-arid region of the Murray-Darling River Basin, a Ramsar listed wetland of international importance. Unique flooding regimes from variable river flows of the Macquarie River are vital for a mosaic of wetland habitats. However river regulation and water diversions have altered river flows to the Marshes causing ecological degradation. To mitigate the impacts, environmental water is managed to the Macquarie Marshes to sustain ecosystem structure and function and to restore degraded habitats.
Understanding the vegetation dynamics in response to flooding regimes over large areas and long time-frames will be critical for the future management of the Macquarie Marshes.