Report Card


The Wet Tropics Report Card provides an assessment of the condition of the nine catchments, eight estuaries, inshore marine and offshore marine zones in the Wet Tropics region. 

The annual reporting periods align with financial years (1st July to 30th June) with four consecutive reports now covering the period from 1st July 2014 to 30 June 2018.

The grades depicted in the Report Card are developed by analysing and integrating scientific monitoring data contributed by many organisations. Wet Tropics Waterways is continually refining the assessment to include new indicators and methods that fill known knowledge gaps. 

Basin and estuary monitoring includes an assessment of various indicators of water quality, habitat/hydrology and fish. This monitoring occurs at:

  • Nine freshwater basins - Daintree, Mossman, Barron, Mulgrave, Russell, Johnstone, Tully, Murray and Herbert.
  • Eight estuaries - Daintree, Dixon Inlet, Barron, Trinity Inlet, Russell-Mulgrave, Johnstone, Moresby and Hinchinbrook Channel. 

Assessment of the health of North, Central, South, and Palm Island inshore marine zones is based on water quality, coral and seagrass health, while a single offshore marine site is assessed based on water quality and coral.

Report Card Improvements and Upgrades

Since the pilot report card in 2016, Wet Tropics Waterways has been able to address a number of monitoring gaps by reporting on additional zones and indicators 

Improvements made in 2017-18:  

  • The number of pesticides was increased from 13 to 22 for basins and estuaries and to 19 for inshore marine. 
  • Pesticide assessment was expanded from solely PSII inhibiting herbicides to include additional herbicide types and insecticides.  
  • Inshore marine pesticide assessment was updated to align with the basin and estuary pesticide risk assessment based on percent species protected. 
  • Basin (freshwater) water quality reporting commenced for the Daintree and Mossman.  
  • Wetland extent results for basins were updated from the most recent Regional Ecosystem mapping conducted by Queensland Herbarium.
  • Freshwater fish reporting was introduced for the Mulgrave and Russell basins.   

Improvements made prior to 2017-18

  • 2016-17: Additional estuary water quality monitoring zone; additional indicator for stream flows in basins and estuaries.  
  • 2015-16: Additional estuary water quality monitoring zones; additional indictors for fish barriers in estuaries and for aquatic weeds in basins. 

The freshwater fish index will continue to be rolled out for the remaining seven basins as from 2019. Fish indicators are yet to be developed for the estuary and marine environments.

We now have a comprehensive picture of the current condition of our waterways. Going forward, we are in a good position to tracks trends in the health of our estuaries, freshwaters and marine zones and see how they are responding to the community’s ‘stewardship’ efforts. 

For presentation purposes scores are now rounded down to whole numbers.  

More detailed information on the grades and the methods used to generate them is available on this site and in the methods and results reports below: 


Download the Report Card PDF for online viewing or printing: 

wet tropics report card

Key messages for 2018-19



very good








very poor

insufficient data

Confidence surrounding the data has been assessed using a multi-criteria framework.



indicators and confidence



indicators and confidence


Inshore marine

indicators and confidence


Offshore marine

indicators and confidence


Environmental results

click on the grades for more information about each zone

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For more detailed information on the grades and the methods used to generate them please refer to the following reports: