FNR 45400 Lecture 17: Mangroves & Seagrasses Applications

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The energy in estuaries, mangroves, and seagrass meadows primarily come from detritus. In mangroves and seagrass meadows, detritus is primarily autochthonous, while in estuaries it is primarily allochthonous. The detritus in these ecosystems help form the foundation of the ecosystem"s food web. The detritus is broken down by decomposers in these ecosystems along with the physical breakdown by the environment. The importance of detritus in mangroves is further linked to their physical role in influencing material flux to marine ecosystems. Seagrasses play a role in material flux as well as in nutrient cycling and water purification. Mangroves typically don"t use carbon inputs as much as seagrass and estuary habitats do. Coastal mangrove forests provide invaluable services to people and wildlife around the globe. Within the last decade, more than 50% of mangrove habitat has been lost due to human-influenced activities (wolanski et al. , 2000).

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