Drivers of coastal dune dynamics on the Younghusband Peninsula, South Australia

Author: Martim Moulton

Moulton, Martim, 2020 Drivers of coastal dune dynamics on the Younghusband Peninsula, South Australia, Flinders University, College of Science and Engineering

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Coastal dunes are dynamic systems that can undergo significant morphological and ecological changes, shifting from an active/unvegetated state to a stabilized/vegetated state, and vice versa, in a matter of years to decades. This thesis examines different aspects of coastal dune dynamics within one of the words largest coastal dunefields, the Younghusband Peninsula (Southeast coast of South Australia). From this work it was revealed that exotic rabbits had a significant impact on vegetation cover and geomorphological changes, in the Younghusband Peninsula dunefield between 1949 and 2018. Results also showed significant evidence that wave energy can be one of the main controlling factors of foredune evolution, as reported in the southern end of the YP. These findings could have important ramifications to future coastal studies and coastal planning in South Australia and other parts of the world.

Keywords: Coastal dunes, coastal vegetation, exotic rabbits, dunefield stabilization, wave energy

Subject: Geography thesis

Thesis type: Doctor of Philosophy
Completed: 2020
School: College of Science and Engineering
Supervisor: Patrick Allan Hesp