Discovering mangrove swamp

is like entering a micro-universe where unique fauna and flora meet!

Mangrove swamp is a forest located along the coasts and coastal rivers of tropical countries (Indonesia, Nigeria, Brazil, Australia, etc…). The trees that make it up are called “mangroves” and grow in the space between high and low tide (the intertidal zone). When the sea rises, water covers the ground and sometimes even the trunks.

These plants thrive in soft, oxygen-deprived, and highly saline soil which is also swept by waves and marine currents. It should be noted that these conditions are usually harmful to plant life.

So the mangroves grow in the mud, a mixture of clay, silt, sand and partially degraded matter… Basically, everything that the river has taken with it to the sea. This vase contains little or no oxygen (it is said to be suboxic/anoxic). So, to breathe, mangroves develop very special roots in the shape of stilts, knots, knees or sticks, which work a little like a snorkel by capturing the oxygen contained in the air above the ground.

Relatively few in number in the area, plant species gather in groups, called “facies”. They are grouped according to their affinity with the environment (salinity, immersion time, freshwater). For example, waterfront “facies”, “the bravest” ones receive the waves directly and dampen them. Therefore the rear facies benefit from this protection, like a shield that reduces the impact.

More than

66

of the tropical coastline
is covered by mangrove swamp.

However, many coasts could end up bare because of deforestation! Fortunately, the rate of its destruction appears to have slowed since 2010.

Now

0.4

disappear each year

compared to 1% in the 1990s! Like the coral reef, its teammate, the mangrove swamp, has incomparable assets that go far beyond a singular natural beauty.

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