- Mangrove is a ecosystem, instead some kinds of plants.
- Geographically paralleling the geographical distribution of coral reef.
- In the United States: Fl. Keys.)
- Like reefs, mangrove swamps are environmentally formed by organisms, but unlike most coral communities, they thrive in inter-tidal zone and endure a wide range of salinity.
- Three species: Red ( Rhixophora mangle), Black (Avicennia germinans), White (Laguncularia racemosa).
- Special reproduction of mangroves:
- Red (the bark of it is really red!): aerial roots, producing baby trees. The baby trees can float for a long time before it finally find a good place and settle down.
- Black and white: they produce seed.
- strong roots to sustain in the inter-tidal zone
II. Environmental factors
- Temperature: minimum=25centigrade. But red seems less resistant than black.
- The influence is of prime important but a large tidal range is not necessary.
- Mangroves cover a zone >= tidal range.
- Tides contribution to mangroves:
- Keep the soil saturated with water and contributing to its anaerobic nature.
- Provide food for organisms in mangrove swamp.
- Transport inevitable larva and seeds of mangrove (remember the baby trees float).
- Mangroves endure a wide range of salinity.
- Salinity is important not because the salt is necessary for mangroves but because it reduce competition from other species.
- How they exclude salt:
- Red: glands
- Black: lenses in the leaves
- White: glands
III. Zonation ( not always like this. In Australia it is in reversed order.)
- I drew a figure, but it does not show here. If you want to see that there is one on page175 on our reader.
- def. of succession: one replace of other during some time periods.
- Pioneer: red mangrovesà grow, reduce currentà accumulate debris à shallow water à organic soil à raising the level of the optimal for red.
- Black: water becomes more shallow and stagnant
- White or Conocarpus à tropical forest
- This is why Avicennia peat is found under Conocarpus soils, and Rhizophora peat is found under Avicennia soils.
V. Associate biota (for a better view, search this web page for photos and videos.)
- Among the most productive of all estuarine ecosystems.
- Animal: many kinds in sharp contrast to the low diversity of plants.
- Plankton: small number but there are.
VI. Human use & disturbance
- protect in lands when hurricane;
- produce land
- nursery ground for fishes
- usage of the wood as fence, etc.
- Dumping development
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