Case Studies

Marine Benthic Habitat Mapping

The project objective focused on developing a better understanding of geophysical characteristics and benthic communities in coastal Victoria, Australia.

VPAC’s participation involved the development of an automated procedure to process large volumes of multibeam sonar data coupled with georeferenced video “ground truth” data collected off the cost of Victoria.

An automated decision tree classification system was used to classify substrata and dominant biota communities based on georeferenced underwater video ground truth data.

The technique of combining derivative products from the backscatter and the bathymetry datasets was found to improve separability for broad biota and substrata categories over the use of either of these datasets alone.

Development of coastal regions has resulted in significant anthropogenic impacts in south-west Victoria. The Victorian Marine Habitat Mapping Project surveyed over 500 square kilometres in 14 marine regions within Victorian state waters with the objective of establishing baseline physical and biological information regarding coastal waters.

Further Information

For further information regarding this project or for information on VPAC’s Geospatial solutions and services, please contact VPAC at or phone +61 3 9925 4645, or visit

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