Shedding new light on subterranean fauna

November 2017


Subterranean fauna
Subterranean fauna are organisms that spend their entire lives beneath the Earth's surface; there is little known about them.


Western Australia’s Pilbara and Yilgarn regions are two areas that are rich in organisms broadly classified as subterranean fauna. These species occur in either the groundwater (stygofauna) or above the water table in caves and voids (troglofauna).

This highly diverse fauna are a key consideration in many environmental assessments in Western Australia. However, many questions about their distribution and habitat remain unanswered.

Over recent months WABSI has enabled a series of discussions to identify where more research is needed to help meet the needs of industry and regulators. At the most recent workshop led by WABSI, industry and government representatives, environmental consultants  and researchers met to further develop a research program that aims to understand more about subterranean fauna and their ecosystems.

Next steps are to finalise the prospectus which will lay-out the value proposition for potential funders, identify appropriate funding models and prepare funding submissions.

The development of a subterranean fauna program of works is being  led by WABSI, in conjunction with its joint venture partners.

For more information, please contact Dr Lesley Gibson, Program Director, WABSI.


Key industry and government representatives at the recent workshop helping to develop an end user driven research program for subterranean fauna.
Key representatives at the recent workshop developing an end user driven research program for subterranean fauna.


Presenters 2
Presenter Dr Lesley Gibson (WABSI) provided an overview of current research.


Group 1


Participants at subterranean fauna workshop