Indian River Lagoon, boats, recruitment, submerged aquatic vegetation
This study combined documentation of four boat propeller scar types in Halodule wrightii seagrass beds in Mosquito Lagoon, Florida with manipulative field experiments to document scar recovery times with and without restoration. Scar types ranged from the most severe scar type (Type 1) with trench formation which had no roots or shoots in the trench, to the least severe (Type 4) scars that had no depth, intact roots and shoots shorter than the surrounding canopy. For 110 measured existing scars, the frequency of each scar type was 56% for Type 1, 10% for Type 2, 7% for Type 3, and 27% for Type 4. In the first manipulative experiment, experimental scars were created to document the natural recovery time of H. wrightii for each scar severity within one year. Type 4 scars recovered to the control shoot density at 2 months, while Types 1, 2, and 3 scars did not fully recover in one year. Mean estimated recovery for H. wrightii is expected in 25 months for Type 1, and 19 months for Types 2 and 3. For the second manipulative experiment, three restoration methods were tested on the Type 1 scars over a 1 year period. Restoration methods included: (1) planting H. wrightii in the scar trench, (2) filling the trench with sand, and (3) filling with sand plus planting H. wrightii. There was complete mortality of all transplants at 2 months and only 25% of scars retained fill sand after 1 year. With dense adjacent seagrass beds, natural recovery was more successful than any of my restoration attempts. Thus, I suggest that managers should concentrate on preventing seagrass destruction rather than restoration.
Walters, Linda J.
Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Grablow, Katherine, "Recovery And Restoration Of The Seagrass Halodule Wrightii After Boat Propeller Scar Damage In A Pole-troll Zone In Mosquito Lag" (2008). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3455.