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Interlinkages between Eastern-African coastal ecosystems

More:  Institutes 
Reference no: TS3*920114
Period: April 1993 till September 1995
Status: Completed

Thesaurus terms: Coastal waters; Coral reefs; Hydrodynamics; Mangroves; Nutrients (mineral); Seagrass
Geographical terms: ISW, Kenya, Coast, Gazi Bay [Marine Regions]; ISW, Tanzania, Zanzibar [Marine Regions]

Institutes (2)  Top 
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel; Faculteit Wetenschappen & Bio-ingenieurswetenschappen; Vakgroep Chemie; Analytical, Environmental and Geochemistry (AMGC), more
  • Koninklijk Nederlands Instituut voor Onderzoek der Zee; NIOZ Yerseke, more, co-ordinator

Mangroves, seagrass meadows and coral reefs often coincide in tropical coastal zones. These ecosystems are important for coastal stabilization and they have a high economic value as they are sources of forestry and fishery products. In many areas, however, these systems are threatened by increasing resource consumption by the human populations. The scientific programmes of this std-3 projects focusses on the functional interdependence of mangroves, seagrass beds and coral reefs in terms of dissolved and particulate nutrient exchanges. There is a growing awareness that many interrelations between mangroves, seagrass meadows and coral reefs exist and that these should have implications for management strategies aimed at the sustainable use of coastal resources. It is expected that the scientific data generated by the project will support and stimulate coastal management in the East-African region from the viewpoint of a functional integrity of the coastal zone. Execution of the project, in addition, implies the continuation and extension of existing cooperation between East-African (Kenyan and Tanzanian) and European (Dutch, Belgian and swedish universities and research institutes.
The programme will be carried out in Kenya (Gazi bay) and in Tanzania (Zanzibar), and is divided into three parts: (1) investigations into the functioning of mangroves as outwelling nutrient sources for adjacent systems; (2) investigations into the functioning of seagrass meadows as sink or sources of dissolved and particle bound nutrients; (3) study of hydrodynamics in the coastal zone as the flow of water in the coastal zone is the vehicle for nutrient fluxes between mangroves, seagrass meadows and coral reef.

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