When nature needs a helping hand: Different levels of human intervention for mangrove (re-)establishment

Zimmer, Martin, Ajonina, Gordon N., Amir, A. Aldrie, Crgagg, Simon M., Crooks, Stephen, Dahdouh-guebas, Farid, Duke, Norman C., Fratini, Sara, Friess, Daniel A., Helfer, Véronique, Huxham, Mark, Kathiresan, Kandasamy, Kodikara, K.A. Sunada, Koedam, Nico, Lee, Shing Yip, Mangora, Mwita M., Primavera, Jurgenne, Satyanarayana, Behara, Yong, Jean Wan Hong, and Wodehouse, Dominic (2022) When nature needs a helping hand: Different levels of human intervention for mangrove (re-)establishment. Frontiers in Forests and Global Change, 5. 784322.

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Abstract

Protecting existing mangrove forests is a priority for global conservation because of the wide range of services that these coastal forests provide to humankind. Despite the recent reduction in global rates of mangrove loss, high historical loss rates mean that there are at least 800,000 ha globally that are potentially suitable for mangrove re-establishment. Recently deposited mud banks or intertidal, previously terrestrial, land might provide additional habitat for expanding mangrove areas locally. There is a long history of mangrove rehabilitation. However, despite numerous good examples of, and growing expertise in, natural or assisted (re-)establishment activities, most mangrove planting efforts, for instance, either fail entirely or meet with only limited success. Exposed to waves and currents and subject to tidal inundation, mangroves differ from terrestrial forests, and approaches to, or tools for, terrestrial forest restoration cannot easily be transferred to mangrove forests. Successful mangrove (re-)establishment usually requires a robust understanding of the abiotic and biotic conditions of the chosen site, the ecological requirements of the mangrove species used or facilitated, the reasons for previous mangrove loss or degradation, as well as the barriers–both societal and ecological–that have prevented natural recovery to date. Because most mangrove forests are socio-ecological systems, with which local human populations are intimately engaged, (re-)establishment will normally require the support of, and engagement with, local communities and other local stakeholders. Here, we summarize where, when and why (re-)establishment of mangroves is needed and how to assess this need. We discuss a range of potential aims and goals of mangrove (re-)establishment along with potential pitfalls along the way from conceiving the initial idea to its realization. We compare different technical and conceptual approaches to mangrove (re-)establishment, their challenges and opportunities, and their design and financial requirements, as well as potential solutions. We ground our final outlook and recommendations on examples of successful efforts and the factors that rendered (re-)establishment successful in the past.

Item ID: 75742
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2624-893X
Keywords: mangrove; habitat; restoration
Copyright Information: ©2022 Zimmer, Ajonina, Amir, Crgagg, Crooks, Dahdouh-Guebas, Duke, Fratini, Friess, Helfer, Huxham, Kathiresan, Kodikara, Koedam, Lee, Mangora, Primavera, Satyanarayana, Yong and Wodehouse. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Date Deposited: 16 Aug 2022 23:25
FoR Codes: 31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3103 Ecology > 310305 Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology) @ 40%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410405 Environmental rehabilitation and restoration @ 40%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410406 Natural resource management @ 20%
SEO Codes: 18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1802 Coastal and estuarine systems and management > 180206 Rehabilitation or conservation of coastal or estuarine environments @ 60%
18 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT > 1802 Coastal and estuarine systems and management > 180201 Assessment and management of coastal and estuarine ecosystems @ 40%
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