Dr Tom Bridge

Tom is Senior Curator of Corals at the Queensland Museum Network (QMN), based at the Museum of Tropical Queensland campus in Townsville.  His position is co-appointed with the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) at James Cook University.

Prior to joining QMN in 2016, Tom conducted his PhD at James Cook University (2007-2011) and then worked as a postdoctoral research fellow at the CoECRS (2012-2016). His research is broadly focussed on the biodiversity, ecology and conservation of coral reefs. He has a particular interest in the application of new technology, such as Autonomous Underwater Vehicles, to survey little-known coral reefs living in deep water beyond the depths of conventional SCUBA diving.

Tom is a member of the Australian Coral Reef Society and the International Society for Reef Studies. He has been involved in numerous expert panels and working groups, such as the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Mesophotic Coral Reef Ecosystems Steering Committee, and the Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS) National Benthic Monitoring Program Steering Committee.

Twitter @TomBridge07
Instagram: @tom.bridge.photog


Research Publications

  • Hughes T, Kerry J, Alvarez-Noriega M, Alvarez-Romero J, Anderson K, Baird A, Babcock R, Beger M, Bellwood D, Berkelmans R, Bridge T et al. (accepted February 2017) Global warming and recurrent mass bleaching of corals. Nature doi: 10.1038/nature21707
  • Bongiorno D, Bryson M, Bridge T, Dansereau D, Williams S (accepted January 2017) Co-registered hyperspectral and stereo imagine seafloor mapping from an autonomous underwater vehicle. Journal of Field Robotics.
  • Scheffers B, De Meester L, Bridge T, Hoffman A, Pandolfi J et al. (2016) The broad footprint of climate change from genes to biomes to people. Science. 354(6313): aaf7671
  • Smallhorn-West P, Bridge T, Munday P, Jones G (2016) Depth distributions and abundance of a coral-associated reef fish: roles of recruitment and post-recruitment processes. Coral Reefs. doi: 10.1007/s00338-016-1509-x
  • Macdonald C, Bridge T, Jones G (2016) Depth, bay position and habitat structure as determinants of coral reef fish distributions: are deep reefs a potential refuge? Marine Ecology Progress Series. 561: 217-231.
  • Bridge T, Luiz O, Coleman R, Kane C, Kosaki R (2016) Ecological and morphological traits predict depth-generalist fishes on coral reefs. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 283: 20152332.
  • Laverick J, Andradi-Brown D, Exton D, Bongaerts P, Bridge T, Lesser M, Pyle R, Slattery M, Wagner D, Rogers A (2016) To what extent to mesophotic coral ecosystems and shallow reefs share species of conservation interest? Environmental Evidence. 5: 1-16.
  • Roberts T, Bridge T, Caley MJ, Baird A (2016) The point count transect method for estimates of biodiversity on coral reefs: improving the sampling of rare species. PLoS One. 11(3): e0152335.
  • Madin J, Anderson K, Andreasen M, Bridge T et al. (2016) The Coral Trait Database, a curated database of trait information for coral species from the global oceans. Nature Scientific Data. doi:10.1038/sdata.2016.17
  • Bridge T, Grech A, Pressey R (2016) Factors influencing incidental representation of previously unknown features in Marine Protected Areas. Conservation Biology. 30 (1), 154-165.
  • Beaman R, Bridge T, Lüter C, Reitner R, Wörheide G (2016) Spatial patterns in the distribution of benthic assemblages across a large depth gradient in the Coral Sea, Australia. Marine Biodiversity. 46(4): 795-808.
  • Ferrari R, Bryson M, Bridge T, Hustache J, Williams SB, Byrne M, Figueira W (2015) Quantifying the response of structural complexity and community composition to environmental change in marine communities. Global Change Biology. 22: 1965-1975.
  • Przeslawski R, Alvarez B, Kool J, Bridge T, Caley MJ, Nichol S (2015) Implications of sponge biodiversity patterns for the management of a marine reserve in northern Australia. PloS One. 10(11): e0141813.
  • Hill N, Tobin A, Reside A, Pepperell J, Bridge T (2015) Dynamic habitat suitability modelling reveals rapid poleward distribution shift in a mobile apex predator. Global Change Biology. 22(3): 1365-2486.
  • Thomas C*, Bridge T*, Figueiredo J, Deleersnidjer E, Hanert E (*co-lead authors) (2015) Connectivity between submerged and near-sea surface coral reefs: can submerged reef populations act as refuges? Diversity and Distributions. 21: 1254-1266.
  • Ainsworth T, Krause L, Bridge T, Torda G, Raina J-B, Gates R, Padilla-Gamino J, Smith C, Woolsey E, Zakrzewski M, Bongaerts P, Spalding H, Bourne D, Hoegh-Guldberg O, Leggat W (2015) The coral core microbiome identifies rare bacterial taxa as ubiquitous endosymbionts. ISME Journal. 9: 2261-2274.
  • Muir P, Wallace C, Bridge T, Bongaerts P (2015) Diverse staghorn coral fauna on the mesophotic reefs of north-east Australia. PLoS One 10(2): e0117933.
  • Roberts T, Moloney J, Sweatman H, Bridge T (2015) Benthic community composition on submerged reefs in the central Great Barrier Reef. Coral Reefs. 34: 569-580.
  • Bridge T, Ferrari R, Bryson M, Hovey R, Figueira W, Williams S, Pizarro O, Harborne A, Byrne M (2014) Variable response of benthic communities to anomalously warm sea temperatures on a high-latitude coral reef. PLoS One. 9(11): e113079.
  • Bridge T, Hoey A, Campbell S, Muttaqin E, Rudi E, Fadli N, Baird A (2014) Depth-dependent mortality of reef corals following a severe bleaching event: implications for thermal refuges and population recovery. F1000Research. 2:187 doi: 10.12688/f1000research.2-187.v3.
  • Pontasch S, Scott A, Hill R, Bridge T, Fisher P, Davy S (2014). Symbiodinium diversity in the sea anemone Entacmaea quadricolor on the east Australian coast. Coral Reefs. 33: 537-542.
  • Bridge T, Hughes T, Guinotte J, Bongaerts P (2013) Call to protect all coral reefs. Nature Climate Change. 3: 527-530.
  • Bongaerts P, Muir P, Englebert N, Bridge T, Hoegh-Guldberg O (2013) Cyclone damage at mesophotic depths on Myrmidon Reef. Coral Reefs. 32: 935-935.
  • Harris P, Bridge T, Beaman R, Webster J, Nichol S, Brooke B (2013) Submerged banks in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, greatly increase available coral reef habitat. ICES Journal of Marine Science. 70: 284-293.
  • Bridge T, Beaman R, Done T, Webster J (2012) Predicting the location and spatial extent of submerged coral reef habitat in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, Australia. PLoS One. 7(10): e48203.
  • Bridge T, Scott A, Steinberg D (2012) Abundance and diversity of anemonefishes and their host sea anemones at two mesophotic sites on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Coral Reefs. 31: 1057-1062.
  • Bridge T, Fabricius K, Bongaerts P, Wallace C, Muir P, Done T, Webster J (2012). Diversity of Scleractinia and Octocorallia in the mesophotic zone of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Coral Reefs. 31: 179-189.
  • Foster R, Bridge T, Bongaerts P (2012) The first record of Hippocampus denise (Syngnathidae) from Australia. Aqua: International Journal of Ichthyology. 18: 55-57.
  • Bridge T, Done T, Friedman A, Beaman R, Williams S, Pizarro O, Webster J (2011) Variability in mesophotic coral reef communities along the Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Marine Ecology Progress Series. 428: 63-75.
  • Bridge T, Done T, Beaman R, Friedman A, Williams S, Pizarro O, Webster J (2011) Topography, substratum and benthic macrofaunal relationships on a tropical mesophotic shelf margin, central Great Barrier Reef. Coral Reefs. 30: 143-153.
  • Bongaerts P*, Bridge T*, Kline D, Muir P, Wallace C, Beaman R, Hoegh-Guldberg O (* co-lead authors) (2011) Mesophotic coral ecosystems on the walls of Coral Sea atolls.  Coral Reefs. 30: 335-335.
  • Bongaerts P, Sampayo E, Bridge T, Ridgway T, Vermeulen F, Englebert N, Webster J, and Hoegh-Guldberg O (2011) Symbiodinium diversity of mesophotic coral communities on the Great Barrier Reef: a first assessment. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 439: 117-126.
  • Williams S, Pizarro, O, Webster J, Beaman R, Mahon I, Johnson-Roberson, M, Bridge T (2010) Autonomous Underwater Vehicle-assisted surveying of drowned reefs on the shelf-edge of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Journal of Field Robotics. 27: 675-697.
  • Webster J, Beaman R, Bridge T, Davies P, Byrne M, Williams S, Manning, P, Pizarro O, Thornborough K, Woolsey E, Thomas A, Tudhope A (2008) From corals to canyons: the Great Barrier Reef margin. Eos. 89: 217-218.
  • Refereed conference papers
  • Woolsey E, Byrne M, Beaman R, Williams S, Pizarro O, Bridge T, Thornborough K, Davies P, Webster J (2013) Ophiopsila pantherina beds on subaqueous dunes off the Great Barrier Reef. In Echinoderms in a changing world: Proceedings of 13th International Echinoderm Conference. Edited by Johnson, C et al. Hobart, Tasmania.
  • Williams S, Pizarro, O, Johnson-Roberson M, Mahon I, Webster J, Beaman R, Bridge T (2009) AUV-assisted surveying of relic reef sites. Proceedings of the Oceans 2008 MTS/IEEE Conference, Quebec City, Canada.



Senior Curator of Corals


PhD (James Cook University)