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A successful method of transplanting adult Ecklonia radiata kelp, and relevance to other habitat-forming macroalgae


Layton, C and Cameron, MJ and Shelamoff, V and Tatsumi, M and Wright, JT and Johnson, CR, A successful method of transplanting adult Ecklonia radiata kelp, and relevance to other habitat-forming macroalgae, Restoration Ecology, 29, (5) Article e13412. ISSN 1061-2971 (2021) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

© 2021 Society for Ecological Restoration

DOI: doi:10.1111/rec.13412


The ability to successfully transplant adult kelp has applications not only for ecological experiments, but also for habitat conservation and restoration projects. However, approaches to the long-term transplanting of adult kelp (especially for stalked or ‘stipitate’ species), and the communication of these methods, has been relatively haphazard, often due to poor results and excessive mortality. Here, we provide a brief communication to describe a method to effectively transplant the stipitate kelp Ecklonia radiata—the most widespread and abundant kelp in Australasia—and which allowed the transplanting of >1,000 adult kelp over 1.5 ha. We also discuss additional observations relevant to the success of transplanting kelp (such as donor age/size), and the applicability of this method to other habitat-forming macroalgae. Our method involved securing the adult Ecklonia to the substratum using large bands made from recycled rubber, which held the holdfast firmly but gently against the substratum. Re-attachment of the adult kelp typically occurred within 3–6 weeks, while rates of survivorship were approximately 75% and not affected by the density nor size of the transplanted patch. This method could also readily be adapted to suit different substratum types and other species of kelp and habitat-forming algae. Ultimately, this transplanting method adds to the collection of effective techniques for restoring habitat-forming macroalgae, especially for stipitate species where few methods have been communicated.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:marine habitat restoration, kelp, conservation, habitat, macroalgae, marine, restoration, subtidal
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Coastal and estuarine systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of coastal and estuarine ecosystems
UTAS Author:Layton, C (Dr Cayne Layton)
UTAS Author:Cameron, MJ (Mr Matthew Cameron)
UTAS Author:Shelamoff, V (Dr Victor Shelamoff)
UTAS Author:Tatsumi, M (Mr Masayuki Tatsumi)
UTAS Author:Wright, JT (Associate Professor Jeffrey Wright)
UTAS Author:Johnson, CR (Professor Craig Johnson)
ID Code:149164
Year Published:2021
Web of Science® Times Cited:6
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2022-03-15
Last Modified:2022-04-07

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