Friday, 10 June 2011

Save our Mangrove stands

Mangrove tree - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011

Mangroves are the most important part of the coastal habitat, which occur in patches along the intertidal zone. Mangroves play a vital role in the health of the marine ecosystem, because they filter and block sediments from the unstable substrates of the wadi and desert, and preventing siltation of sea grass beds and coral reefs. One of the most important roles of mangroves is to increase oxygen into the marine environment. They also eliminate pollutants such as sewage waste, pesticide run-off, and toxins in waste dumped in the wetlands.

 
To many of us mangroves mean gnarled trees, biting insect and black, smelly, oozing mud. When in fact the quite backwaters of mangrove areas are places where young fish are able to find protection and shelter from large predators. These areas are used as nursery and spawning grounds for some spices of fish e.g. Garfish, Bream, Mullet, Prawns and crabs. In Egypt mangroves are found in sheltered waters with the enclosed soft-bottom habitats described above. The stands are usually protected by headlands, islands or intertidal sand spits, as well as in shallow bays protected by a fringing coral reef.
Reef Heron - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
 Most of the Red Sea mangroves occur her in the southern side of the red sea where the tide range is higher than in the central portions and where there is a wider continental shelf, protected areas and freshwater. Avicenia marina, is the dominant species and is found starting with the area north of Hurgada and continuing south. A number of islands have dense thickets of mangroves, including Abu Mingar, Qiusoum, Safaga, El Qusair and Wadi el Gemal.
Ospery - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Osprey - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Reef Heron - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Crabs - Photos by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Spoonbill - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Spoonbill - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
White-Eyed Sea Gull - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010
White-Eyed Sea Gull - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011

These mangrove stands are important bird nesting sites for Sooty Gulls, Sooty Falcons and Ospreys. Other characteristic birds include the Brown Booby, Reef Heron, Spoonbill, White-eyed Gull, Caspian Tern and White Cheeked Tern.
 The Red Sea mangrove communities have received relatively little scientific attention, although they are notably different from most mangroves in that they are euhaline-metahaline and found on substrates of thin sediment over sub-fossil or raised coral rock in areas with high salinity and limited freshwater. This differs from most of the world's dominant mangrove ecosystems which occur in deep, muddy, brackish substrates with considerable freshwater inflow. The Red Sea is at the geographical limits for mangrove growth.
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
 
Building activity suffocate the mangrove stands - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Mangrove tree - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Salt on backside of the leafs.Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
The flowers are small orange coloured, with characteristic odour that attract insects, particularly bees. 1km south of Hamata, there is scientific project for mangrove rehabilitation and experiments to produce natural honey from mangrove.
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Produced a fruits like a wide orange almond. Seedlings germinate and begin to develop from the fruit while still attached to the tree. These seedlings are capable of taking root before being swept away by winds and tide.
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Wide spreading roots have pneumataphores which are vertical spikes mangroves use to breath air at low tide and store air for high tide use. Do not walk on them!
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011

Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Plastic bags may suffocate the stands! - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Do not conduct water sport activity close to the Mangrove stands! - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
PLEAS SAVE OUR MANGROVE STANDS
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011


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