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Impacts of global climate change on mangrove forests in Kenya : how can we mitigate them?
M'Rabu, E.; Bosire, J.; Cannicci, S.; Dahdouh-Guebas, F. (2009). Impacts of global climate change on mangrove forests in Kenya : how can we mitigate them?, in: Dahdouh-Guebas, F. et al. Proceedings of the Symposium African Botany in Brussels. pp. 97
In: Dahdouh-Guebas, F. et al. (2009). Proceedings of the Symposium African Botany in Brussels. Université libre de Bruxelles - ULB / Vrije Universiteit Brussel - VUB: Belgium. 120 + 10 annex. pp., more

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 236969 [ OMA ]
Document types: Conference paper; Summary

Authors  Top 
  • M'Rabu, E., more
  • Bosire, J.
  • Cannicci, S.
  • Dahdouh-Guebas, F., more

Abstract
    Global climate change poses a considerable threat to the integrity of mangrove ecosystems as evidenced by periodic episodes of heavy rainfall such as El-Niño rains. These may highly affect mangrove macrofauna, which are residents of mangrove areas throughout their adult life. During the El-Niño event of 1997-98, massive sedimentation resulting from erosion of terrigenous sediments caused mangrove die-back in many areas along the Kenyan coast. One of the most affected peri-urban mangrove forest in Mombasa, was Mwache Creek, where approximately 200 ha of mangrove forest died. We compared functional biodiversity in El-Niño impacted sites to natural reference sites in order to assess the impact of climate change on mangrove-associated biodiversity. We established sea-to-land transects in both impacted and natural reference sites. Along these we measured relevant physico-chemical factors (i.e. salinity, conductivity, temperature, organic matter, selected nutrients, etc...) as well as mangrove biodiversity, the latter of which we considered an indicator of ecosystem change. Mollusc densities and diversity were found not to be significantly different between treatments (impacted vs. natural reference sites), whereas crab diversity was significantly higher in natural reference sites as opposed to impacted sites. Faunal diversity of molluscs in impacted sites was found to be sustained by invasive shrubs, whereas crab densities and diversity was highly reduced by the mangrove die-back. Further analyses are on-going.

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