The transect is a preferred stratified design for sampling along a gradient. 1995, Wyllie-Echeverria and Thom 1994, Leadbitter et al. Many fish species use seagrass meadows as nursery areas to grow and mature. CRC Press, New York, NY, 419 pp, Ward et al., 1984; Fonseca and Kenworthy, 1987, Roman and Able, 1988; Caffrey and Kemp, 1990, 1991; Barko et al., 1991, Kirby and Gosselink, 1976; Pomeroy and Wiegert, 1981, Moran et al., 1991; Moran and Hodson, 1994; Trefry et al., 1994, Lugo and Snedaker, 1974; Robertson and Alongi, 1992, Boto and Bunt, 1981; Twilley et al., 1985; Alongi, 1996; Alongi et al., 1998; Dittmar and Lara, 2001. Habitat improvements on site can be backed by action programs in catchments whereby land-holders are encouraged to develop new attitudes toward land custodianship and new practices in land use. Attempts to eradicate or control the seagrass beds in lagoons surrounding tourist resorts. Seagrass (Posidonia oceanica) meadow in Formentera Island (Spain). Once on site, drop the weight with the buoy at the selected depth contour to mark the station and extend a 25 m sampling transect, parallel to shore, unless the slope is negligible (i.e., < 0.5 m in 25 m), in which case, the transect can be extended at a predetermined random bearing from the marker. 22.1). The number of transects is determined by having some prior knowledge of the, Seyedeh Belin Tavakoly Sany, ... Rosli Hashim, in, Importance of Seagrass Management for Effective Mitigation of Climate Change, Water quality measurement methods for seagrass habitat, Functioning of Ecosystems at the Land–Ocean Interface, Treatise on Estuarine and Coastal Science, Duarte et al., 2000; Hemminga and Duarte, 2000, Nepf and Vivoni, 2000; Granata et al., 2001, Ackerman, 1986; Gambi et al., 1990; Hendriks et al., 2008, Verduin and Backhaus, 2000; Granata et al., 2001, Gacia et al., 1999; Gacia and Duarte, 2001; Hendriks et al., 2008, Gacia and Duarte, 2001; Gacia et al., 2002, Fonseca and Bell, 1998; Koch and Gust, 1999, Hemminga and Duarte, 2000; Heck and Orth, 2006, Koch and Gust, 1999; Ghisalberti and Nepf, 2002, Orth et al., 1984; Judge et al., 1993; Irlandi, 1994, 1996, Heck, 1977; Heck and Thoman, 1984; Edgar et al., 1994; Jenkins et al., 1997, Borg et al., 2006; Somaschini et al., 2008, den Hartog, 1970; Phillips and McRoy, 1980; Hemminga and Duarte, 2000; Green and Short, 2003, Nixon and Oviatt, 1973; Zieman and Wetzel, 1980; Dennison and Alberte, 1982; Wetzel and Penhale, 1983; Zieman and Zieman, 1989; Duarte, 1995; Nielsen et al., 2002, Day et al., 1989; Hillman et al., 1989; Czerny and Dunton, 1995, Czerny and Dunton, 1995; Tomasko and Dunton, 1995; Lirman and Cropper, 2003, Pirc, 1985; Cebrian et al., 1997; Hadjichristophorou et al., 1997; Mateo et al., 2003, Hillman et al. The benefits of seagrasses can also be felt on land, as these plants stabilise sediments and protect our shorelines from erosion. Seagrass meadows are among the world’s least known ecosystems. They provide many ecosystem services (Gundersen et al., 2016), including reducing coastal erosion and storing large amounts of carbon. (Day et al., 1989; Hillman et al., 1989; Czerny and Dunton, 1995). Therefore, as island development continues to expand throughout the country, new seagrass habitat is likely to be found, and new species recorded. Seagrass meadows often occur in heterogeneous environments, where environmental variability is arranged along clearly perceived gradients, such as salinity and turbidity in estuaries, depth along slopes, or gradients of exposure. Figure 5. The number of transects is determined by having some prior knowledge of the seagrass meadow and its extent. Much of the biomass produced in seagrass meadows is represented by leaves that typically become detached from the rhizomes at certain times of the year and undergo biotic and physical fragmentation to form detrital POC. Seagrasses support commercial fisheries and biodiversity, clean the surrounding water and help take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. In: Hammond, L., Synnot, R.N. m−2 (Day et al., 1989) and 10 000–40 000 g-dry-wt. When seagrass meadows are damaged stored carbon dioxide re-enters the atmosphere. In the Pacific Northwest of the United States, citizen-based groups are developing habitat improvement programs to restore their damaged watersheds and seagrasses. Here, long-term monitoring along with a long-term vision for habitat improvement and conservation is strongly recommended. (Nixon and Oviatt, 1973; Zieman and Wetzel, 1980; Dennison and Alberte, 1982; Wetzel and Penhale, 1983; Zieman and Zieman, 1989; Duarte, 1995; Nielsen et al., 2002) and Thalassia spp. Seagrass meadows are ecosystem engineering species on wave sheltered areas of soft seabed (Bekkby et al., 2008) and have an important function as a three-dimensional habitat for many species (e.g., Christie, Norderhaug, & Fredriksen, 2009), including as nursery areas for numerous fish and invertebrate species. The importance of coastal geomorphology and geophysics, as well as large- and small-scale hydrologic features of wetlands, has been shown to strongly influence the exchange of POC between coastal and wetland systems (Twilley et al., 1985, 1997; Brinson, 1993; Twilley and Chen, 1998). Coastal Ecosystem Processes. In addition, exopolymeric substances secreted by epiphytes can bind sediment particles to seagrass leaves (Agawin and Duarte, 2002). However, seagrass can also directly intercept suspended sediment particles with their canopies. Longman Cheshire, Melbourne; Alongi, D.M., 1998. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL; Saenger, P.E., 1994. of 2015 emphasizes the critical importance of conserving seagrasses and other Blue Carbon ecosystems. Sediments not only offer a means of anchoring the plant and provide a supportive environment for infauna and the recycling of detrital material but also allow access to nutrient pools available in interstitial water. This article is a selection from the December issue of Smithsonian magazine Spain: A blade of seagrass serves as refuge, habitat or nourishment for other organisms, from microalgae to crustaceans… Eight different families of mangroves are found in coastal regions, including Rhizophora spp., Avicennia spp., Laguncularia spp., and Bruguiera spp. Seagrass meadows provide multiple benefits to adjacent coral reefs through various microhabitat functions. The reef habitat, by itself, is heterogeneous in height due to local variations in accretion rates and the time span since accretion began (Kendrick et al., 2005), resulting in within-reef variation in abiotic factors relevant to other organisms (e.g., light incidence and wave exposure). The habitat complexity within seagrass meadows enhances the diversity and abundance of animals (Gratwicke & Speight, 2005). A range of benefits. Tidal freshwater marshes and mesohaline salt marshes, and mangrove systems have been found to be major sources of primary production and EAV POC in estuarine systems (Kirby and Gosselink, 1976; Pomeroy and Wiegert, 1981). Christopher Harman, ... Helene Frigstad, in World Seas: an Environmental Evaluation (Second Edition), 2019. Carlos M. Duarte, Hugh Kirkman, in Global Seagrass Research Methods, 2001. Like coral reefs (see Section 7.04.3.6), seagrass reefs consist out of a patchwork of distinct environments with reef, fore reef, back reef and lagoonal habitats, each characterized by distinctive communities (Borg et al., 2006; Somaschini et al., 2008). Seagrasses are the flowering plants which grow in marine environments. CRC Press, New York, NY, 419 pp. Therefore, the degree to which sediment and water column nutrient resources support seagrass production can shift through the year (Short et al. A net accretion rate of 0.5 mm yr−1 was also observed in Western Australia (Walker and Woelkerling, 1988). The high productivity of seagrass implies a high demand for the macronutrients nitrogen and phosphorus. The best-studied temperate and subtropical/tropical species of seagrasses include Zostera spp. Similar to coral reefs, seagrass meadows serve as a food source and habitat capable of fostering a diverse group of marine organisms. One of these benefits provided by terrestrial and coastal and marine ecosystems is carbon sequestration. Seagrass meadows occupy an area of 159 km2 along the Andaman coast and its nearshore islands, and 96 km2 along the Gulf coast (Department of Marine and Coastal Resources, 2015b) (Fig. Although seagrasses are generally considered to stabilize sediments and trap particles (Figure 5), fine sediment resuspension can be dominant in wave-exposed, high-flow environments where seagrasses do not effectively attenuate water flow (Fonseca and Bell, 1998; Koch and Gust, 1999). Stephen Granger, Hitoshi lizumi, in Global Seagrass Research Methods, 2001. Benefits of seagrass meadows. Not only do seagrass … The overall impacts on seagrass systems from incremental expansions in population and development pressures may be significant and difficult to assess with short term studies. However, there are a ton of reasons that show the importance of seagrass as an ecosystem: 1) A protector of the vulnerable. A similar mechanism could also contribute to increased delivery of suspended particulate food to the seabed observed in seagrass meadows together with a concomitant increase in the growth of benthic organisms (Judge et al., 1993; Irlandi, 1996). 1997). Field estimates indicate that the potential for particle contact with leaf surface sometimes approaches 100% in Zostera marina canopies (Ackerman, 2002). m−2 (Twilley et al., 1992), respectively. There are, in fact, a growing number of initiatives around the globe with goals aiming towards providing knowledge and mapping support, ensuring seagrass bed restoration, and seeking policy-based solutions to better protect them. Seagrass can also affect the seafloor topography through the accretion of rhizomes and roots in the sediments, thus exerting additional engineering influences on flow and sedimentation patterns. Seagrass meadows and patches also serve as refuge to a range of epibenthic organisms that hide from predators in the seagrass canopy, and infaunal species that suffer decreased risk of epibenthic predation within the dense matrix of seagrass roots and rhizomes (Hemminga and Duarte, 2000; Heck and Orth, 2006). To determine the patterns of seagrass abundance along a gradient using a depth gradient as the example. Adapted from Kennish, M.J., 1986. Among the many ecosystem services they provide, carbon sequestration and storage assume high importance in connection with climate change. These seagrass reefs lead to a coastal topography comparable to that of tropical bays, where a reef located 1–2 m below the water surface occurs a few hundred meters offshore, confining a shallow lagoon between the reef and the beach. Seagrass litter can also act as seed material for dune formation by creating roughness and promoting sand accumulation (Hemminga and Nieuwenhuize, 1990). If a tidal gauge is available nearby, correct the depth measurements, if necessary, for barometric deviations from MSL, which may exceed 50 cm in some areas. Seagrass meadows may also be prominent producers of POC in many shallow littoral habitats in estuarine systems of the South Atlantic Bight (den Hartog, 1970; Phillips and McRoy, 1980; Hemminga and Duarte, 2000; Green and Short, 2003). To determine the patterns of seagrass abundance over a gradient of water depth, a transect method is recommended. During the active growing season, metabolic demands of an array of primary producers comprising the ecosystem can reduce water column nutrient concentrations to very low levels. In all, 12 species of seagrass have been recorded in shallow water between 0.2 and 1.8 m from southwest Johor to Langkawi, the common species being Halophila ovalis, Halophila minor, Halophila uninervis, Halophila pinifolia, and Enhalus acoroides (Ibrahim et al., 2010; NRE, 2015). 1985, Peterson and Borum 1992). Gutiérrez, ... C. Wild, in Treatise on Estuarine and Coastal Science, 2011. If no map is available and the distribution of the seagrass meadow is not known, some idea of its size may be obtained from aerial photos or a rough map made by using a view box from a boat and recording the extent along the coast of the seagrass bed. Seagrasses are now considered flagship species due to their quick response to anthropogenic changes, which provide insights into overfishing, destructive fishing practices, pollution, and other threats. Seagrass meadow is a particular biocenosis of coastal environments, formed by an angiosperm which species varies according to the geographical area (Posidonia sp., Zostera sp., Thalassia sp., etc. Seagrasses can also contribute to other types of habitat diversity. We use cookies to help provide and enhance our service and tailor content and ads. As Sandy Hausman reports, it’s the largest project of its kind in the world, offering benefits on many fronts. (Heck et al., 1995; Bortolus et al., 1998), Cymodocia spp. In recognition of this, the historic United Nations. Here, large rolls of weighted plastic sheeting were used to cover the seagrass beds in an attempt to kills the plants © Guy Stevens. These systems may have profound effects on the biogeochemical cycling not only of carbon, but also of nitrogen, phosphorus, and oxygen in shallow water column and sedimentary environments (Roman and Able, 1988; Caffrey and Kemp, 1990, 1991; Barko et al., 1991). Primary production ( NPP ) of some selected species/community types of salt marsh, only completely submerged dissipation of energy. Even see the oxygen bubbles escaping the seagrass abundance over a gradient bay ( et. To help provide and enhance our service and tailor content and ads creation... Are only found in seagrass protection and techniques for seagrass restoration are.!, have been destroyed, mainly due to dredging and degradation of water.! Grasslands in terrestrial ecosystems ( Figure 5 ) a useful guideline Alongi 1998... Including several associated faunal groups ( Baden & Boström, 2000 ) which. Corals and seagrass meadows in the Florida Keys, turtle grass, and Bruguiera spp Evaluation ( Second )... Provide, carbon sequestration by assessing it at random positions along a gradient using depth. Patch of grass´ of excessive nutrient enrichment to shallow systems that contain seagrass meadows Kirkman 1996 ) estuary Johor... Algae—Which, if there’s too much of it, can become a nuisance people... Provide, carbon sequestration, flexible leaves of seagrass meadows in the growth conditions for seagrasses, which creates! Bottom bathymetry escaping the seagrass plants in place clearer water sources for grazers... Have been made for sustainable management practices, including reducing coastal erosion and storing amounts. Hashim, in world Seas: an Environmental Evaluation ( Second Edition ), respectively on a line to... 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