The Diatom Flora of Australia, Volume 1 is about the world's largest sand Islands; Stradbroke and Fraser Islands, adjacent to Queensland, the north-eastern state of Australia. The taxonomy and distribution pattern of diatoms are described with ample light and scanning electron micrographs in an island biogeographical context. These Islands built by sand grains carried by oceanic currents from eastern state of New South Wales, do have vast sources of fresh water collected over a million years, shouldered by the surrounding denser sea water. This vast reservoir sustains several dystrophic and oligotrophic lakes and streams. The diatoms of these water bodies are rich in diversity of relic species, insulated by ecological barriers. The islands have become the cradle of morphological variation and speciation of diatoms functioning as Refugia. Many species of Eunotia, Pinnularia, Brachysira, Frustulia, Kobayasiella, Eunophora and Actinella which have become almost extinct or rare in the mainland are thriving in these Islands. The Diatom Flora of Australia, Volume 1 provides evidence for biogeographical path ways of diatoms to Asia, New Zealand south-western Australia, Tasmania, and South Africa. Additionally this treatise provides evidence of several sand dwelling diatoms in the fresh water streams and lakes on the beaches clearly displaying marine influence.
This is first in a series of publications on the diatom flora of Australia. The set will be complete in 5 volumes.