The idea to edit this book started with an e-mail from Suzanne Mekking of Springer
Science and Business Media who wanted to make an appointment to talk about current
needs for new books in the field of aquatic sciences. During that meeting, she
attempted to persuade me into writing a book about my field of research – ecological
interactions among coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrass beds by reef fishes. At first,
I was not interested due to the large amount of work this would encompass, and my
already overloaded work schedule....
These interactions are discussed further in section I.B below. Factors such as rapid
population growth, inequitable access to productive assets, especially land, the neglect of agriculture
outside high potential areas, and the impact of external shocks, combine in certain areas to produce
and reproduce poverty. Limited alternative non-farm income opportunities reinforce this situation.
Poor households tend to respond either by migrating or by other options such as an expansion of
farming activity to open new lands to cultivation, which may increase the pressure on natural
The authors and contributors to this report acknowledge the Indigenous Traditional Owners of Country throughout Northern Australia, and their right to speak for Country.
The authors are recipients of an ARC Linkage Grant focused on investigating connectivity conservation issues in various regions, including Northern Australia. Some of the outcomes from that research were drawn upon for this report.