Trapping of Rhizophora mangle Propagules by Coexisting Early Successional Species
Abbreviated Journal Title
Batis maritima; Facilitation; Mangrove restoration; Nurse plants; Sarcocornia perennis; MANGROVE FORESTS; NURSE PLANTS; RESTORATION; FACILITATION; RECRUITMENT; MANAGEMENT; SEEDLINGS; FLORIDA; SHRUBS; GROWTH; Environmental Sciences; Marine & Freshwater Biology
Distributions of mangroves in coastal wetlands are influenced by abiotic conditions and the net effect of biotic interactions, including competition, facilitation, and consumer pressure. In coastal wetlands, early successional shrubs, herbs, and grasses may facilitate recruitment of mangroves through multiple mechanisms, including amelioration of environmental conditions, propagule trapping, and structural support. In Mosquito Lagoon, FL, we observed an aggregated distribution of Rhizophora mangle propagules along vegetated shorelines with Batis maritima and Sarcocornia perennis and hypothesized that this distribution was a result of propagule trapping by the vegetation. We designed a field experiment to evaluate retention of R. mangle propagules on vegetated and unvegetated shorelines in Mosquito Lagoon. Significant differences were found in the retention time of mangrove propagules at each shoreline type, with vegetated shorelines retaining propagules significantly longer than unvegetated shorelines. Results from this study help to define facilitative mechanisms which may be important in successional processes of coastal wetlands and have direct restoration applications. Successful recovery of mangroves at restoration sites may be facilitated by establishment of B. maritima and S. perennis, when natural propagule sources are available, or through planting mangrove seedlings into existing stands of these halophytes when restoration areas are propagule-limited.
Estuaries and Coasts
"Trapping of Rhizophora mangle Propagules by Coexisting Early Successional Species" (2014). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 5266.