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Mangrove Ecology

Mangrove Forests: One of the World’s Threatened Major Tropical EnvironmentsAt least 35% of the area of mangrove forests has been lost in the past two decades, losses that exceed those for tropical rain forests and coral reefs, two other well-known threatened environments.  Read more about the decline in World Wide Mangroves

[Picture: mangrove overview]

Scientists from the Ecosystems Center of the Woods Hole Marine Biological Lab (MBL) are executing a detailed, 3-year study of mangrove ecology in local estuaries funded by the National Science Foundation, as part of a unified effort by the Woods Hole Consortium (WHC) a multi – institutional collaboration between the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Marine Biological Laboratory, and The Woods Hole Research Center (WHRC).

[Picture: mud core mangrove]

In this particular study, satellite imagery is obtained to compare forest cover among different watersheds along the coast adjacent to Isla Canales de Tierra (ICT) and is coupled with intense, month long, bi-annual field studies to assess nutrient levels, forest canopy cover, photosynthetic rates, marine and terrestrial biodiversity, chemical activity in sediments, and changes in isotopic levels in communities of organisms in key estuaries.

[Picture: upland burning mangroves]

The ultimate goal of this study is to characterize the natural variability (differences between wet and dry seasons) and investigate human impacts (such as upland deforestation, seasonal burning, and pollution) on the ecosystem function in these Pacific Mangroves and the adjacent coral reefs.

[Picture: mbl reseachers]

Stay tuned for more updates!

Luis CamilliScience Director