Saltmarsh Vegetation Plots
In this section we will look at the use of plots to monitor saltmarsh vegetation. By using a set number of plots and locations we can track the health and dynamics of saltmarsh over an extended period of time. We will also look at the methods used to monitor soil compaction and the epifauna (in this case gastropods) associated with the saltmarsh vegetation.

The equipment needed for capturing saltmarsh vegetation data includes:

  •  60 m tape to mark out transect and locate plot pegging point
  • Digital Camera
  • Drop rod to measure compaction
  • 1 M quadrat (digital images of vegetation plot)
  • 250 mm quadrat (snail survey)
  • White sorting tray for snail survey
  • Optional - magnifying glass and a reference guide for snails (e.g. Wildlife of Moreton Bay by the Queensland Museum)

Saltmarsh Vegetation Plot Methods


  • Identify Plot Marker (stake)
  • Using the 1 M quadrat take a digital image in each of the four locations around the stake (refer to the diagram on the right) and record the photo frame number
  • With the drop rod apparatus record the soil compaction for each plot (4 in total)
  • Now randomly drop the 250mm quadrat into the plot
  • Count and identify any gastropods found within the 250 mm quadrat
  • Record all the details on the Vegetation Plot Data Sheet
  • Also record any other observations (e.g. tyre track, propagules etc)

Video Presentation on Plot Methods

Video Presentation on Equipment





Vegetation Plot Processing Order

Presentation on Plot Methods

Click on the tile for a printable set of notes

1. Digital Images

2. Soil Compaction

3. Gastropod Count

Click on the Image below to download a basic Gastropod ID Chart