A mangrove swamp is a distinct saline woodland or shrubland habitat formed by mangrove trees. They are characterized by depositional coastal environments, where fine sediments (often with high organic content) collect in areas protected from high-energy wave action. The saline conditions tolerated by various mangrove species range from brackish water, through pure seawater (3 to 4%), to water concentrated by evaporation to over twice the salinity of ocean seawater (up to 9%).
last updated 1989
Mangrove swamps are home and sanctuaries for thousands of aquatic bird species, including:
Mangrove swamps protect coastal areas from erosion, storm surge (especially during hurricanes), and tsunamis. The mangroves' massive root systems are efficient at dissipating wave energy. Likewise, they slow down tidal water enough so its sediment is deposited as the tide comes in, leaving all except fine particles when the tide ebbs. In this way, mangroves build their own environments. Because of the uniqueness of mangrove ecosystems and the protection against erosion they provide, they are often the object of conservation programs, including national biodiversity action plans.
The protective value of mangrove swamps is sometimes overstated. Wave energy is typically low in areas where mangroves grow, so their effect on erosion can only be measured over long periods. Their capacity to limit high-energy wave erosion is limited to events such as storm surges and tsunamis. Erosion often occurs on the outer sides of bends in river channels that wind through mangroves, while new stands of mangroves are appearing on the inner sides where sediment is accruing.
The Banhados de Iguape Ecological Station (Portuguese: Estaco Ecológica dos Banhados de Iguape) is an ecological station in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. It protects an area of mangrove swamp. Since 2013 it has been administered as part of the Juréia-Itatins Ecological Station.Bayhead Natural Heritage Site
Bayhead Natural Heritage Site is a 20ha nature reserve of mangrove forest and coastal grassland within the industrial area of Durban Bay, South Africa. The reserve is a remnant of what was once the largest mangrove swamp in the province.A number of birds can be found in the reserve, up to 120 different aquatic birds have been recorded. As in the nearby Beachwood Mangrove Nature Reserve, various crabs can also be found. There is a boardwalk and public information centre on site.
In March 2015, a vegetable oil spill from a refinery in the area caused a number of mangrove trees to die.Cabilao Island
Cabilao is a Philippine island in the Cebu Strait, part of Bohol Province. It is home to the only natural lake in the province: Cabilao Island Lake, also called Lake Danao or Lanao.The island, part of the Municipality of Loon, has five barangays (Cabacongan, Cambaquiz, Looc, Pantudlan, and Talisay), and has a total population of 4,663 people, who primarily depend on fishing and agriculture, as well as tourism.Notable indigenous products are handcrafted mats and bayongs, weaved from romblon (pandanus) leaves by a cooperation of weavers using a shared service facility in Pantudlan.The entire island was proclaimed as a Mangrove Swamp Forest Reserve under Proclamation No. 2152 in 1981, and confirmed by the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) Act of 1992 (Republic Act No. 7586). But since only a small area around Cabilao Island Lake actually has any mangroves worthy of being protected, House Bill No. 5108 of February 2017 removed the island's protection under the NIPAS Act. Proclamation No. 1801, signed in November 1978, declared the entire island a tourist zone and marine reserve under the administration and control of the Philippine Tourism Authority (PTA).The island is accessible by outrigger canoe ferries that connect Mocpoc on the western end of Sandingan Island to the pier on the eastern side of Cabilao Island. There are no cars on the island, and local transportation consists of motorcycles and a few tricycles.Central African mangroves
The Central African mangroves ecoregion consists of the largest area of mangrove swamp in Africa, located on the coasts of West Africa, mainly in Nigeria.Chalai Lagoon
Chalai Lagoon is a lagoon in Mullaitivu District, north-east Sri Lanka. The town of Chalai is located on a sand bar between the lagoon and the Indian Ocean.
The lagoon is fed by a number of small rivers. It is linked to the sea by a narrow channel near Chalai. The lagoon's water is brackish.
The lagoon is surrounded by dense forest, scrubland and some rice paddies. The land is used for fishing and some salt production.
The lagoon has extensive sea grass beds and mangrove swamp. The lagoon attracts a wide variety of water birds including ducks, gulls, terns and other shorebirds.Chundikkulam Lagoon
Chundikkulam Lagoon (Tamil: சுண்டிக்குளம் கடல் நீரேரி, Sinhala: කුම්බවැව Kumbavæwa) is a lagoon in Jaffna District and Kilinochchi District, north-east Sri Lanka. The town of Chundikkulam is located on a narrow piece of land between the lagoon and the Indian Ocean. The lagoon is sometimes referred to as Elephant Pass Lagoon.
The lagoon is fed by a number of small rivers from the south, including Kanakarayan Aru, Netheli Aru and Theravil Aru. It used to be linked to Jaffna Lagoon but since the construction of the causeway at Elephant Pass the lagoon has in effect been a lake. The lagoon's water is brackish.
The lagoon is surrounded by palmyra palm plantations and scrubland. The land is used for prawn fishing and some salt production.
The lagoon has small areas of mangrove swamp and sea grass beds. The lagoon attracts a wide variety of water birds including storks, ibis, ducks, coot, gulls and tern.
Most of the lagoon was designated a bird sanctuary in 1938.Collier-Seminole State Park
Collier-Seminole State Park is a Florida State Park located on US 41, 17 miles (27 km) south of Naples, Florida. The park is the home of a National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark, the Bay City Walking Dredge used to build the Tamiami Trail through the Everglades. The park includes of 6,430 acres (26 km2) of mangrove swamp, cypress swamps, salt marshes, mangrove river estuaries, and pine flatwoods. Among the wildlife of the park are American alligators, raccoons, ospreys, and American white ibis. brown pelicans, wood storks, bald eagles, red-cockaded woodpeckers, American crocodiles, Florida black bears (Ursus americanus floridanus) and Big Cypress fox squirrels (Sciurus niger avicennia) also inhabit the park.
Activities include picnicking, hiking, bicycling, and canoeing, camping, wildlife viewing, fishing and boating. Amenities include an RV park, four pavilion picnic shelters, a boat ramp, and a full-facility campground with youth, group and primitive campsites. The park has a number of trails. A 13.6-mile (21.9 km) canoe trail that flows down the Blackwater River through a mangrove forest. A 6.5-mile (10.5 km) hiking trail runs through the park. A .9-mile nature trail features a boardwalk system and observation platform that overlooks the salt marsh. The park is open from 8:00 am until sundown year-round.De Soto National Memorial
De Soto National Memorial, in Manatee County 5 miles (8.0 km) west of Bradenton, Florida, commemorates the 1539 landing of Hernando de Soto and the first extensive organized exploration by Europeans of what is now the southern United States.
The memorial includes 26 acres (11 ha), where the Manatee River joins Tampa Bay. It has 3,000 feet (910 m) of coastline; eighty percent of the area is mangrove swampFlorida swamps
Florida swamps include a variety of wetland habitats. Because of its high water table, substantial rainfall, and often flat geography, the U.S. state of Florida has a proliferation of swamp areas, some of them unique to the state.
Swamp types in Florida include:
Cypress dome - most common swamp habitat in Florida
Tupelo gum swamp
Mangrove swampGros Islet
Gros Islet (English: Large Island) is a community near the northern tip of the island country of Saint Lucia. Originally a quiet fishing village, it has gone on to become one of the more popular tourist destinations in the country.Settled by the Carib (and possibly Arawak), the area was first identified as Gros Islet in a French map from 1717. The community was a Roman Catholic parish, as the first priests who arrived on the island settled in the village in 1749. Gros Islet was first settled by the French from Martinique.
In 1778, as a retaliation for the declaration of war on the British by the French, the British navy captured the island of Saint Lucia from the French and built a naval base at Gros Islet Bay in 1782, temporarily changing the name to Fort Rodney. The island has switched hands between the British and French throughout its existence.
Between 1991 and 2001 the population rose 54%; the highest rise in the country. In 2001, the population was 19,409, making it the secondmost-populous community in Saint Lucia, up from 13,505 in the 1991 census and 10,164 in the 1980 edition. Of this number, 9,307 were male and 10,102 were female.A nearby mangrove swamp was dredged to form Rodney Bay Marina and many hotels, resorts, and villas have since been built. However the old village of Gros Islet is still a flourishing district.
In September of the year 2011, Parliamentary Representative Honourable Leonard Montoute advised that the constituency may become St. Lucia's second city, if the expansion plans for the area progress in accordance with its development blue print.Hungry Bay Nature Reserve
Hungry Bay Nature Reserve is a nature reserve on the east coast of Bermuda. It was established in 1986. It is considered the best example of coastal mangrove swamp on the island. It includes the Hungry Bay area and the largest mangrove coastal swamp in Bermuda. It is protected by a Tree preservation order (T.P.O.) and designated as an official Nature Reserve within the Parks system of Bermuda.
The Hungry Bay Mangrove Swamp Reserve, a wetland site, is one of the seven Ramsar Sites in Bermuda. This designation recognises its international importance as a northerly mangrove swamp, as a habitat for its native crustaceans and as an important destination for migratory birds. Most of the reserve consists of mangrove swamp, while in the southern part there is a small area of saltmarsh. Much damage was done to the site by a storm in 2003 and residents have expressed concern about possible environmental damage resulting from pollution from the village of Seabright.Kalba
Kalba (Arabic: كَلْبَاء, romanized: Kalbāʾ) is a city in the Emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is an exclave of Sharjah lying on the Gulf of Oman coast north of Oman. Khor Kalba (Kalba Creek), an important nature reserve and mangrove swamp, is located south of the town by the Omani border. The town was captured by the Portuguese Empire in the 16th century and was referred to as Ghallah.It was attacked and sacked by the Sultan of Muscat's forces in March 1811 as part of the ongoing Omani campaign against the maritime forces of Al-Qasimi. It was a Trucial State from 1936 to 1951, before being reincorporated into Sharjah.
Kalba Mangrove reserve is currently closed to the public and is being developed as an eco-tourism resort by the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq). A number of conservationists and ecologists have expressed concern regarding the project.Kokkilai Lagoon
Kokkilai lagoon (Tamil: கொக்குளாய்; Sinhala: කෝකිලායි) is an estuarine lagoon in Mullaitivu District and Trincomalee District, north-east Sri Lanka. The town of Kokkilai is located on a sand bar between the lagoon and the Indian Ocean.The lagoon is fed by a number of small rivers, including Churiyan Aru. It is linked to the sea by a narrow channel that is very often blocked by the sand bar. The lagoon's water is brackish.
The lagoon is surrounded by a densely populated region containing cultivated land, scrubland and open forest. The land is used for prawn fishing, paddy cultivation and some shifting cultivation.
The lagoon has extensive sea grass beds and small areas of mangrove swamp and mudflats. The shallow waters of the lagoon attracts a wide variety of water birds including pelican, cormorant, herons, egrets, wild duck, stork, waders and pink flamingoes.The lagoon was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1951.Little Gasparilla Island
Little Gasparilla Island is a barrier island in southwest Florida, in Charlotte County. It is just north of Gasparilla Island, separated by Gasparilla Pass. It lies west of the town of Placida, separated by Placida Harbor. It is connected with Don Pedro Island to the north by a thin strip of beach and mangrove swamp. It borders the Gulf of Mexico to the west. Little Gasparilla Island can be reached by water taxi from Placida.Mangrove
A mangrove is a shrub or small tree that grows in coastal saline or brackish water. The term is also used for tropical coastal vegetation consisting of such species. Mangroves occur worldwide in the tropics and subtropics, mainly between latitudes 25° N and 25° S. The total mangrove forest area of the world in 2000 was 137,800 square kilometres (53,200 sq mi), spanning 118 countries and territories.Mangroves are salt-tolerant trees, also called halophytes, and are adapted to life in harsh coastal conditions. They contain a complex salt filtration system and complex root system to cope with salt water immersion and wave action. They are adapted to the low oxygen conditions of waterlogged mud.The word is used in at least three senses: (1) most broadly to refer to the habitat and entire plant assemblage or mangal, for which the terms mangrove forest biome, and mangrove swamp are also used, (2) to refer to all trees and large shrubs in the mangrove swamp, and (3) narrowly to refer to the mangrove family of plants, the Rhizophoraceae, or even more specifically just to mangrove trees of the genus Rhizophora.The mangrove biome, or mangal, is a distinct saline woodland or shrubland habitat characterized by depositional coastal environments, where fine sediments (often with high organic content) collect in areas protected from high-energy wave action. The saline conditions tolerated by various mangrove species range from brackish water, through pure seawater (3 to 4%), to water concentrated by evaporation to over twice the salinity of ocean seawater (up to 9%).Mangrove forests move carbon dioxide "from the atmosphere into long-term storage" in greater quantities than other forests, making them "among the planet's best carbon scrubbers" according to a NASA-led study based on satellite data.Merambong Island
Merambong Island (Malay: Pulau Merambong) is an uninhabited island located in Pontian District, Johor, Malaysia on the Straits of Johor. The island is dominated by mangrove swamp.Nai Aru Lagoon
Nai Aru Lagoon (or Nay Aru Lagoon) is an estuarine lagoon in Mullaitivu District, north-east Sri Lanka.
The lagoon is fed by a number of small rivers, including Nay Aru (Mullaitivu). It is linked to the sea by a narrow channel to the south that is very often blocked by a sand bar. The lagoon's water is brackish.
The lagoon is surrounded by dense forest, scrubland, rice paddies and coconut palm. The land is used for prawn fishing and paddy cultivation.
The lagoon has extensive sea grass beds and mangrove swamp. The lagoon attracts a wide variety of water birds including ducks, gulls, terns and other shorebirds.Narrow Neck, New Zealand
Narrow Neck is a suburb of Auckland, New Zealand.
Until the mid-19th century, Devonport was connected with the rest of the North Shore by a causeway between Ngataringa Bay and the Hauraki Gulf. This causeway gave the appearance of a "narrow neck". On the eastern side of this strip of land is the Narrow Neck beach, on the western side there was an extensive mangrove swamp.
In the late 19th century the majority of this mangrove swamp was drained and filled in creating land used as a racecourse until the 1930s and subsequently a golf course. In the World Wars the area was used for a military training camp. From 1927 until the mid-1930s a Royal New Zealand Navy ammunition storage facility was located in the suburb; the munitions were moved to the Kauri Point Armament Depot from 1937.
Close to the western edge of the reclaimed area a new road was put through creating a more direct link between Devonport and Takapuna.
Narrow Neck is under the local governance of the Auckland Council.
In the 2013 census, Narrow Neck has a population of 3,720, an increase of 102 (2.8 percent) from 2006.Umlalazi Nature Reserve
The Umlalazi Nature Reserve is a coastal reserve situated 1 km (0.62 mi) from Mtunzini on the KwaZulu-Natal North Coast. Umlalazi was established as a protected area in 1948 and is 10.28 km2 (3.97 sq mi) in extent. Home of the palm-nut vulture, which is one of the rarest birds of prey in South Africa.
Lagoons can have crocodiles. There are three trails in the reserve. One of which passes examples of mangrove swamps in South Africa, where several species of mangrove can be found. Another walk leads through the dune forest where bushpig, bushbuck and red, grey and blue duiker may occasionally be seen.
The third trail leads through dune forest and mangrove swamp along the edge of the river. Wildflowers and a variety of bird life can be seen. There are also colonies of fiddler crabs and mud-skippers.