Aquifers associated with low-lying coastal swamps Low-lying coastal swamps occur sporadically along the Queensland coast in areas where alluvia was deposited during periods of higher sea level by fluvial processes in current river channels, floodplains, estuarine, delta and other near-shore environments. These low-lying coastal swamp environments include adjacent alluvia and are characterised as being near-permanently saturated by groundwater. These low-lying coastal swamp environments can contain one or more unconfined, unconsolidated sedimentary aquifers, where groundwater is stored and transmitted through inter-granular voids between gravel and sand particles.
Aquifers associated with low-lying coastal swamp environments may provide a wide range of ecosystems with water required to support their fauna and flora communities, ecological processes and delivery of ecosystem services.
Palustrine (e.g. swamps) and lacustrine (e.g. lakes) wetlands and riverine (e.g. streams and rivers) water bodies located in low-lying coastal swamp environments may depend on the surface expression of groundwater from these unconsolidated sedimentary aquifers.
Terrestrial vegetation located in low-lying coastal swamp environments may depend on the subsurface presence of groundwater in these unconsolidated sedimentary aquifers where groundwater is typically accessed through the capillary zone above the water table.
Unconsolidated sedimentary aquifers in low-lying coastal swamp environments may also support subterranean ecosystems within the aquifer itself, sometimes is indicated by the presence of stygofauna.
Estuarine and near-shore marine ecosystems located adjacent to low-lying coastal swamp environments may depend on the discharge of groundwater from these unconsolidated sedimentary aquifers.