Reef Base
Fish Base
Magnetic Island Map
Magnetic Island Fauna List

Tips for using the Field Guide

The Magnetic Island Coral Reef Field guide is produced in digital format because it delivers several clear advantages over traditional paper books.

Firstly, we can include many large size images of the reef taxa to help in identification, and include pictures of different colour patterns in the adult and juvenile stages where possible.

Secondly, producing the guide using html code means that it will work on nearly everybody's computer in the standard web browser that they are already familiar with using. The use of hyperlinks on each page allows the user to open multiple pages at once, for example to investigate the characteristics of related species, or to simultaneously look at species pages and a Magnetic Island map.

Thirdly, a field guide is always a work in progress, so the digital format allows us to release updates quickly and easily.

To get the most out of the field guide, we offer the following pointers. First, make sure the most recent version of your browser is installed, ideally one that supports tabbed windows. Windows Internet Explorer 7 and Mozilla Firefox 2 are provided in the tools section along with some other useful software. When you see a blue hyperlink in the text, or an image where your mouse pointer changes to a hand, then you have 2 options.

1) you can simply click the link with the left mouse button and the current page will change to the new page in the same window (unless I have specified it to open in a new window).

2) you can click your right mouse button over the link, and choose either "open in new tab" or "open in new window". This will leave the current window open, and open the link in a new tab or window, which then lets you browse information in both windows simultaneously.

Internet Databases

There are several very powerful internet databases available, which can be used in conjunction with the field guide to search for information on the coral reef organisms mentioned here. Fishbase is particularly relevant to this first volume regarding the fishes of Magnetic Island. Simply open the Fishbase search page in a new window, and copy and paste a scientific name into the Fishbase search boxes, and all the info for that species will come up. A link to Fishbase is provided at the top of each page.

Reefbase is a huge storehouse of all information relating to coral reefs, and it also includes a GIS system that allows users to zoom into various reef areas of the world and see information such as reef topography, bleaching status, and protected areas. Reefbase also has a large library of publications relating to coral reef ecology. The Reefbase link is also at the top of each page.


This digital field guide is not meant to represent a complete summary of the coral reef taxa of Magnetic Island. It is being continually updated as new images come to hand, and it is anticipated that updates will be released every 6 months or so. Please email to register your interest in receiving future updates, or to advise us of new taxa that should be included.

Click here to view the Version History.

Copyright considerations

This field guide is produced free of charge and it is our intention that it be copied as widely as possible in order to raise awareness of the biodiversity of the reefs of Magnetic Island and the wider Great Barrier Reef region, and the threats they face from global warming and other anthropogenic disturbances. Images and information may be copied and used freely provided that Dr Andy Lewis is acknowledged as the author.


This work is supported by donation only. Please contact in order to make a donation.

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