To make up for this loss, people attempt to restore mangroves all around the world. In most cases, they approach mangrove restoration as if they were planting a forest on land. They grow mangrove seedlings in greenhouses and then transplant them into mudflats along the ocean’s edge.
Once mangroves are gone, they can ‘t simply be replanted. Mangroves actually hold the coastline in place, giving it its shape. Once they are gone, the land erodes and tides and currents reshape the coastline, making it difficult or impossible for mangroves to grow back in their former habitats.
Coastal protection: The dense root systems of mangrove forests trap sediments flowing down rivers and off the land. This helps stabilizes the coastline and prevents erosion from waves and storms. In areas where mangroves have been cleared, coastal damage from hurricanes and typhoons is much more severe.
Ecology, propagation and management: It grows on light, medium and heavy soil but prefers silty clay soil and high- and mid- tidal zone for better performance. Its optimum soil salinity ranges from 8 to 34 ppt. It is propagated by propagules. Unlike in Avicennia spp., propagules of Bruguiera spp.
The loss of mangroves contributes to nearly one-fifth of global emissions from deforestation. Climate change also affects their survival. The report indicates that the effects of climate change could result in a loss of a further 10 – 15 per cent of mangroves by year 2100.
There are many ways you can help protect these ecosystems. Look for sustainable alternatives to eating farmed shrimp from mangrove areas. Find local conservation and government organizations in your area that are working to conserve mangrove forests, and support them.
In addition to being a marginal ecosystem, a mangrove is unique in that, as an ecosystem it has various interactions with other ecosystems, both adjoining and remote in space and time. Another unique feature of mangroves is that, unlike most marginal ecosystems, they are highly productive and dynamic.
Mangrove forests play a central role in transferring organic matter and energy from the land to marine ecosystems. These same bacteria give mangroves their “rotten egg” smell – as the sediment is oxygen-poor, only bacteria that use sulphur for energy can survive.
Herbicides, oil spills, and other types of pollutants may kill mangroves. Causing tremendous damage to mangroves, herbicides, oil spills, and other types of water pollution may result in the death of these plants.
Physically, they serve as a buffer between marine and terrestrial communities and protect shorelines from damaging winds, waves, and floods. Mangrove thickets improve water quality by filtering pollutants and trapping sediments from the land, and they reduce coastal erosion.
By far the greatest threat to the world’s mangrove forests is the rapidly expanding shrimp aquaculture industry. Hundreds of thousands of acres of lush wetlands have been cleared to make room for artificial ponds that are densely stocked with shrimp.
The major threats to mangrove forests include population explosion, conversion to aquaculture ponds, clear-felling for timber, charcoal and wood chip production for industrial and urban development.
Mangroves are salt-tolerant trees, also called halophytes, and are adapted to life in harsh coastal conditions. They contain a complex salt filtration system and complex root system to cope with salt water immersion and wave action. They are adapted to the low oxygen conditions of waterlogged mud.
Mangrove forests stabilize the coastline, reducing erosion from storm surges, currents, waves, and tides. The intricate root system of mangroves also makes these forests attractive to fish and other organisms seeking food and shelter from predators.
Species of mangrove trees The most important of the tree-sized species are in the genera Avicennia, Bruguiera, Ceriops, and Rhizophora. The red mangrove ( Rhizophora mangle ) is abundant in mangrove forests of south Florida, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.